Last post on May 11, 2010 at 11:16 AM
You are in the Mercedes-Benz E-Class
What is this discussion about?
Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Sedan
#5936 of 6720 Re: should i buy mb e320 1997? [abd2]
Sep 28, 2004 (3:01 am)
Again, I would just point out that there are other alternatives for a "second car" than a cheap to buy, but potentially risky to maintain 1997 E320.
For example, back in 2001 I bought a new Honda S2000 for $32,000, drove it for 2 1/2 years and 19,000 miles and traded it in for $22,000. If I had wanted to go through the hassle of selling it privately, I likely would have gotten $24,000+. My maintenance over that period of time was under $300 total (Mobil 1 oil changes every 4,000 miles, etc.).
If you think you can't afford to buy something like a new Honda S2000 as a fun car, then you might reconsider the wisdom of buying an $8,000 Mercedes that could have a couple of multi-thousand dollar repairs (engine, transmssion, suspension) if you're unlucky. While I would certainly hope not, it is entirely possible that the "net" cost to you over the next 2.5 years on an 8 year old 100K+ mile Mercedes could approach what the Honda S2000 cost me. I was prepared to spend $10,000 on a third car for 2.5 years, especially since I turned it into my company car and got some tax savings that reduced the actual cost me by over 40%. But, in general, I think unnecessary second or third cars are a questionable purchase if you are on anything resembling a limited budget.
Certainly not trying to tell you how to spend your money, just suggesting you evaluate all angles before making your decision. Good luck whatever that is.
#5937 of 6720 RE Gasoline Octane
Sep 28, 2004 (5:03 am)
Thanks! I rented some cars for the weekend...a Cad. DeVille and put regular gas in that V8, nothing happened. It drove fine. Since my lease is only a couple years left, I'm thinkin about letting the gas tank empty and then going to 87 for my E320
#5938 of 6720 Re: RE Gasoline Octane [martye320]
Sep 28, 2004 (8:00 am)
I've driven 2 E-320s, a 98 and my current 01. Both perform better on 91 than 87 octane. You won't hear knocking on 87 due to the on board computer adjusting to it, BUT, why give up performance. If you can afford an E320 get the performance you deserve.
OTOH, my wife's Lexus RX330 drive great on 87.
#5939 of 6720 Contemplating 98 E
Sep 28, 2004 (10:00 am)
An acquaitance is selling a 98 E320 sedan, 65K miles in near cherry condition for around $18K. Some elements of this forum scare me. Especially talk of tranny problems. Is reliability a problem with these vehicles? I keep my cars a long time, and have always thought MB could go for the long haul. Any thoughts? Thanks in advance
#5940 of 6720 Back to the 97 E320 by "abd2"...
Sep 28, 2004 (11:55 am)
Think long and hard about whether you want to pay big bucks within the next 20K-30K miles for a lot of maintenance items as well as the possibility of a head gasket for that engine. I kept my 96 until 140K and from 115K to 125K it cost me almost $4000 for the head gasket and various maintenance items such as shocks (approx. $700), serpentine belt ($125), rotors and pads (approx. $800), water pump ($400), and the head gasket ($1400). There were a few other smaller repairs also. Once it was all fixed up it probably could go another 60K or more miles without any significant maintenance money except for brake pads.
The 97 is the last year of the straight six for the E and it (as well as the 2.8 liter in the C-class) are notorious for requiring head gaskets (oil leaks) in the 120K-150K mile range. The price I paid was the lowest of three quotes, with other dealers being as high as $2000..
On the other hand, $8000 cash (not my dealer) is what I got from a dealer for mine at 140K miles and it was a year older than the one you're looking at. But he knew I paid for all those repairs..
And yes, it got regular and frequent oil changes, etc..
My "new" 2001 will get sold within a month of when the Starmark wararanty runs out at 100K miles. No more big repair bills for me..
#5941 of 6720 Re: RE Gasoline Octane [r1_97]
Sep 28, 2004 (1:08 pm)
I'm going to time some 0-60 mph runs and see if I can detect a difference in performance between 87 and 91 octane. I'll let you know the outcome in a couple of weeks.
#5942 of 6720 Re: Contemplating 98 E [stvjef]
Sep 28, 2004 (5:21 pm)
A 7 year old E320 for $18k doesn't seem like a very good price, at least in my area (DC). I've seen 2001's going for the low to mid $20's. As I've posted, I am not disputing that Mercedes can last a long time if properly maintained. I'm just pointing out, along with others, that repairs and maintenance will be a much bigger ticket than a Toyota or Honda.
#5943 of 6720 Re: Contemplating 98 E [stvjef]
Sep 29, 2004 (9:50 am)
I had a '98 E-320 which had to have the entire transmission replaced, fortunately, under warranty. Otherwise cost would have been over $5k. Other than that, only a few minor problems - breaks, electrical - nothing major.
Be advised, out of warranty repairs and ordinary maintenance are expensive. You can expect more maintenance problems than with a Japanese car but the driving experience is worth it, IMO.
#5944 of 6720 My 2000 E430
Sep 30, 2004 (8:37 am)
My "E" has been a really good car so far. But, I only have 28,000 miles on it. In October, I will have owned it 5 years.
When I traded my 1991 560SEL for the "E", I had 82,000 miles on it and had spent about $8,000 in repairs the last couple of years I owned it. The car looked like brand new (Black with Palomino leather) but the repairs were getting tiring. The transmission and air conditioning were still original. The repairs included new fuel injection $2,000 (done twice, second time free), power steering gear box $2,000, new radiator $600, two rear window regulators $300, new taillight $300(the other just started holding water), drivers side sunvisor $225, left rear tire would not come off for tire rotation.. had to have the bolts drilled out $600 (this was the last straw), I traded it in 1999 for $16000 towards the new "E".
#5945 of 6720 Re: RE Gasoline Octane [boiler1]
Oct 10, 2004 (12:09 pm)
hey thanks! let us know what 87 does.