Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Hen's Teeth- 1994 Mercedes E320

The W124 is widely considered the last over engineered Mercedes before accountants took over the reigns in Stuttgart.  The W124 E-class drives like a modern car compared to it's W123 predecessor which has a far more antique look and feel. These E-class cars have a strong following within the USA Benz community, but not so much with enthusiasts due to the lack of a third pedal.  Even the Porsche assembled 500E super sedan made due with a automatic transmission.  In Europe, any six cylinder W124 could be fitted with a manual gearbox.  Find this 1994 Mercedes E320 5 speed for sale in New Milford,CT for $15,000 via craigslist.



This rust free southern E320 was bought with a bad automatic transmission.  The seller undertook quite the project by swapping gear box with Euro 5 speed, installing a shorter 3.27 rear end, fixing interior bits, and rebuilding the suspension with sportier components.  The car is said to be in great condition with all options working as new.


The M104 straight six engine is good for 217 hp in USA guise.  The seller claims the 5 speed conversion has transformed the way the engine pulls and that this spec car should have offered by Benz in the first place.  They claim the new Sportline suspension components strike just the right balance between sport and comfort.


The price seems to be pretty optimistic here and clearly into 500e territory.  The seller also advertises his services to convert your automatic W124 to similar spec as this car for an undisclosed sum.  The term Youngtimers has not caught on over here and is how many Europeans refer to newer classic cars from the 80s/90s like this one.


See another Euro car with a non USA-spec transmission? email tips@dailyturismo.com

Cory got nearly all the items on the to-do checklist completed on his 1995 Mercedes C36 AMG this weekend.  The car should be heading back home this Sunday.

9 comments:

  1. 142 K on the odo. Will need a certificate saying what the real mileage is since he changed the odo. 15 K and he didn't even detail under the hood? Gotta figure any guy that can change an auto to a manual transmission should be able to detail under the hood... I really like it, but not 15 K worth.

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  2. I really like these cars and was close to buying one several times until I found out that MB used wiring harnesses with bio-degradable insulation which deteriorates prematurely. A MB wiring harness is not a cheap part! George in GTA. I don't like the Auto tranni in my MB 190E 2.6 it is a 4-speed which starts in 2 and is therefore really a 3 speed auto.

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    1. True, as did many other automakers of the era as well (Volvo for one, don't ask how I know---it's a long, smoke-filled story). The good news is that by now, they will have been replaced, as there's no way in hell one would have lasted this long without failing.

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  3. The engine wiring harness is not a big job to replace on these and they are readily available second hand on eBay. The throttle body actuator has the same crappy wiring and is not replaced as often as the engine harness. If you know what you are looking at, you can determine whether both pieces are original in five minutes.

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    1. I'd rather have a harness made with new TXL wiring or something similar. Fixing a problem should remove the defect instead of merely putting the situation back to where it was before the problem surfaced. I'm not sure how much it would cost to have harnesses made of better wiring, though.

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  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  5. There is not a issue with the replacement Bosch/Delphi harnesses. Anything with a date code after 1998 is generally considered to be safe.

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  6. Matt, the new assemblies are non-biodegradeable.

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    1. Good to know. Intentionally biodegradable wiring has to be one of the worst "green" product decisions ever.

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