I Love the 90s? 1990 Mercedes-Benz 500SL

I Love the 90s? 1990 Mercedes-Benz 500SL

Last week Craig looked at a really nice early R129 500SL. Today’s car is another early R129 500SL, but as you can probably tell, this one is a bit different. This 1990 for sale in Orange County, CA comes from an era where you actually had to paint a car to change its color. It’s a rolling piece of 1990s car culture and it hasn’t aged particularly well. I compare it to a nice house that hasn’t updated the kitchen in 25 years. It’s not that the workmanship is low, it’s that time has left it behind. Now of course with any custom car, it’s priced way too high and has some strange things going on with it.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1990 Mercedes-Benz 500SL on Orange County Craigslist

Year: 1990
Model: 500SL
Engine: 5.0 liter V-8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 85,730 mi
Price: $13,995

A unique, one of a kind, customized Mercedes-Benz SL500. This car has new B.F Goodrich tires, rebuilt suspension, all new shocks and struts, new conv. tan top, and all original leather tan interior. This auto was customized by Santini with AMG bumpers and trim, Lorinser wheels, and the PPG Harlequin, Vibrance PPG-VM, green to purple paint that changes color as lights hits at different angles. Custom electronics offer remote starting, door and window operations, and remote convertible top opening.

At first glance, I thought this car was customized basically right off the lot. It has all the period correct items like the chameleon paint, early R129 AMG bumpers and sideskirts, Lorinser wheels and remote everything. But upon closer inspection, this car has the 1996-2002 side vents on the fenders. 1990 to 1995 R129s have three squared slots but in 1996 those were swapped out for two slots that were rounded. So if I had to guess, the paintwork and probably all of the other modifications didn’t happen until at least 1996.…

1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E

1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E

As followers of my posts will know, I love cars that conceal their heightened performance behind austere exterior styling. The 500E is a particular favorite of mine. Around 1,500 of these were imported to the US between 1991 and 1994. Based on the W124 chassis E-class, the “wolf in sheep’s clothing” was the product of a joint venture between Mercedes-Benz and Porsche. The chassis would pass back and forth between the two manufacturers as it was assembled: the car got beefier brakes from the SL, upgraded suspension, a wider track and a glorious 5.0 liter V8 motor. A 0-60 MPH sprint time of about 5.5 seconds, top speed of 160 MPH and total power output of around 322 hp might not sound all that impressive now. But those were very respectable numbers for the time, especially for such a large sedan. By the mid-2000s, the 500E had become somewhat overlooked, passed over by many in favor of the BMW M5. But in the last five years there has been a resurgence of interest in these cars. Values have begun to climb as a result.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E on eBay

1991 Mercedes-Benz 500SL

1991 Mercedes-Benz 500SL

The R129, produced between 1989 and 2002, is a bit of an odd duck. It’s too old for those in the market for a roadster with modern levels of power and convenience. But it’s not yet old enough (or rare enough) to be of interest to collectors or vintage aficionados. The upshot is that a nice example can be had for relatively little money and it might well appreciate in value over the coming decade, following R107 values through the roof. The 600SL was the halo car of the lineup, with a monster of a V12 under the hood. But the 500SL – powered by a 5.0 liter V8 that developed a perfectly usable 320 hp – is where real value for money can be found. Perhaps not as sporting as one would hope, these SLs nonetheless continue in a long line of high quality boulevard cruisers known for their high precision engineering, longevity and classic good looks.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1991 Mercedes-Benz 500SL on eBay

1992 Mercedes-Benz 500E

1992 Mercedes-Benz 500E

The 300k-mile 500E I wrote up last week was a bit of a hot mess. It needed extensive cosmetic work along with who knows what else. But to my surprise, it sold for $7,700. I wish the brave soul who bought it all the luck in the world, whether they restore it to its former glory or use it as a comically powerful beater. The sale price got me thinking: how much would you have to pay for high mileage 500E that wasn’t all torn up? As if on cue, this nice looking example popped up on eBay. The miles are high, but the condition of this Porsche-Mercedes mashup looks great, a testament to the longevity and durability of the W124 platform on which it is based.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1992 Mercedes-Benz 500E on eBay

2001 Mercedes-Benz E430 4Matic Estate

2001 Mercedes-Benz E430 4Matic Estate

For all my fellow American readers, you’ll have to sit this one out today as it’s forbidden fruit — at least until 2026. What we are looking at is a 2001 Mercedes-Benz E430 4Matic Estate. This isn’t all that exciting on the surface as the E430, 4Matics and estates aren’t particularly rare by themselves, but combine all three and it’s far from a common build. Of course, North America was denied this combination but fear not if you wanted a fast all-wheel drive wagon, the Audi B5 S4 wasn’t a bad substitute. This V8 S210, for sale in Japan, is up for sale for a shocking low price and the best part about it is that it’s free to apply for Canadian citizenship.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2001 Mercedes-Benz E430 4Matic Estate on Benz World

Year: 2001
Model: E430 4Matic Estate
Engine: 4.3 liter V8
Transmission: 5-speed automatic
Mileage: 146,035 km (90,741 mi)
Price: $4,000 CAD ($2,961 USD)

For sale is my 2001 S210 430 4matic 145,000km.
Silver on black leather interior. No sunroof, auxiliary heater
Close to mint condition.
New Mobil1 oil change, fleece filter, air filter,
fuel filter, front and rear brake pads and hoses, front and rear diff oil, roof antenna rubber, lower windshield moulding, windshield washer pump, rear nozzle, blower motor resistor/regulator. Transmission fluid and coolant and water pump changed 20,000km ago. Needs nothing.

For what I can gather, this is a really nice example even with the 90,000 miles. W210s aren’t regarded as being the most durable cars Mercedes has ever rolled out but this one looks like it’s held up just fine. Inside, this car looks fairly well-equipped with the Comand system and power folding mirrors but no sunroof or parking sensors. The most important thing about this wagon is that it doesn’t appear to have any rust because once you start seeing rust, it’s a losing battle.…

1992 Mercedes-Benz 500SEL

1992 Mercedes-Benz 500SEL

It has been a while since I featured a nice W140, but this example outside of Detroit has given me a perfect excuse to check out another one. This 1992 500SEL in Arctic White with the outstanding Saffron leather interior has everything you would want out of an early W140 and a few extras that I think are great additions. Of course, all this comes with a price tag.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1992 Mercedes-Benz 500SEL on eBay

Year: 1992
Model: 500SEL
Engine: 5.0 liter V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 104,898 mi
Price: Buy it Now $8,000

1992 S500 Immaculate. White over Palomino. All options including self closing latches on doors, power rear view mirror, self closing latch on trunk . . . . . . . . . . The vehicle has never been driven in the winter and has been kept in climate controlled storage. The car has never been through a car wash, only hand washed. I bought it with 99,000 a decade ago, and now it has 104,898 miles on it. It has been a summer Sunday driver. Living in MI does not afford me the opportunity to enjoy the vehicle as much as I’d like to which is the reason for selling the car. As a Benz aficionado you would know that all big body big engine Benz’s were 500SEL’s in 1992. In 1993 they became S500’s. The second owner, a physician in Myrtle Beach SC, bought the 20 inch AMG wheels and low profile tires you see on the vehicle in 1996. He also had the fascia’s on the front and back bumper and side fascia all pained white to match the rest of the car, and re-badged it an S-500. Since the wheels came out in 1996, and the all one color “Euro” look came out at the same time, most think its a 96 car or later.

High mileage 1992 Mercedes-Benz 500E project

High mileage 1992 Mercedes-Benz 500E project

The product of a collaboration between Porsche and Mercedes-Benz, the W124 500E was a worthy competitor to the E34 BMW M5. Powered by a 5.0 liter V8 motor generating 322 hp and equipped with beefed-up suspension and brakes, these stealthy Q-cars have languished on the used market until relatively recently. Finally receiving the attention they deserve, over the last decade values have steadily risen, with mint condition examples now commanding $30k price tags. Cars at that end of the market will likely stay tucked away behind closed doors. But what if you want to just drive a 500E, and not worry about every ding or scrape it gets in the parking lot? The courageous and open-minded might want to take a look at this forlorn-looking example. With a bit of attention and light restoration, this could turn out to be a steal. Or a money pit. Only the brave need apply…

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1992 Mercedes-Benz 500E on eBay

1995 Mercedes-Benz ‘E420’ Cabriolet

1995 Mercedes-Benz ‘E420’ Cabriolet

I’ve been big admirer of the W124 Cabriolet because of the massive design and engineering project it was. Like I mentioned a few months ago, making this car wasn’t just chopping the roof off the coupe, sticking a soft top in the trunk and calling it a day. But sadly despite the huge undertaking and investment, you were only left with one engine choice in the 3.2 liter M104 straight-6. It wasn’t under powered by any means, but it wasn’t exactly a speed demon either. Besides, if you want a fast Mercedes convertible, you ponied up for the SL500 or SL600. I’m going to assume that if they offered the M119 V8 in the W124 Cabriolet,  the price would have been even greater than already high $79,000 (and that’s in 1995 money!). The price point probably would have been right at the edge of the $87,000 SL500 and it probably wouldn’t of sold very well at all. Plus, you are factoring in even more engineering and cost to a project that like mentioned, was very expensive.

So it makes total sense why there was no V8 W124 Cabriolet. But of course it doesn’t stop someone from building one which is exactly what we have here today for sale in New Jersey. What started life as a 1995 E320 Cabriolet has been transformed into a “E420 Cabriolet” and it even has a few other interesting details.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1995 Mercedes-Benz ‘E420’ Cabriolet on Hemmings

Year: 1995
Model: ‘E420’ Cabriolet
Engine: 4.2 liter V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 56,921 miles
Price: $69,999

ORIGINAL PAINT, ONE OF ONE E420 CONVERTIBLE

OVER 160000 DOLLAR INVESTED IN PROFESSIONAL CONSTRUCTION,

$199 Dealer Fee

Price: $69,999

From the looks of it, this swap was done by the people at Wolfgang’s Inc., a Mercedes- Benz specialty facility in Tenafly, New Jersey.…

1993 Mercedes-Benz 400E

1993 Mercedes-Benz 400E

A little over a week ago I looked at a great 1992 Mercedes-Benz 400E for sale in California for only $2,000. Not surprisingly, that car sold soon after. But in case you missed out on that awesome budget V8 W124, you are in luck with today’s car. Another 400E, this time a 1993, has come up for sale for in California for, once again, only $2,000. Unfortunately, this one comes with a little bit of a catch.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1993 Mercedes-Benz 400E on Orange County Craigslist

Year: 1993
Model: 400E
Engine: 4.2 liter V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 280,000 mi
Price: $2,000

This 1993 Mercedes-Benz 400E has been a wonderful car for several years, but has just now stopped going into 4th gear. The car runs and drives very well, and I still use it every day in “3” mode. It is perfectly usable, but will need transmission work to get good gas mileage again on the freeway. The condition of this car is very good, especially the interior/upholstery. The headliner is sagging, but otherwise very clean.

– Rare 4.2 liter V8 32v DOHC M119 engine
– All routine maintenance is up to date: spark plugs, air filters, engine oil, etc
– NEW BFGoodrich tires
– Wheels were refinished with OE color powder coat
– Euro spec headlights (USA ones included)
– Original stereo and genuine Mercedes trunk-mounted CD changer
– Many extra spare parts included
– CLEAN TITLE in hand

Much like the 1992 from over a week ago, this one also has well over 200,000 miles on it but fear not, this W124 looks like it comes from a loving home home as well based on what the seller is presenting in the ad description. What’s the catch then? Well, sadly this 400E won’t go into fourth gear anymore.…

1992 Mercedes-Benz 400E

1992 Mercedes-Benz 400E

Lets get this out of the way from the start. This is a really nice 1992 Mercedes-Benz 400E for $2,000. No catch, no disclaimers, no ”just needs (insert part) to run”. Just a clean, V8 W124 for $2,000. This car even has Pirelli tires on it. You don’t put Pirellis, not even cheap ones, on cars you don’t care about. Yes, this W124 has over 215,000 miles, but for $2,000 I don’t care how many miles it has. So what are you waiting for? Go buy this car.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1992 Mercedes-Benz 400E on San Francisco Craigslist

Year: 1992
Model: 400E
Engine: 4.2 liter V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 215,688 mi
Price: $2,000

*Check engine light is now fixed and off*
I need to sell this car quickly. Price is OBO
I am selling this 1992 Mercedes 400e in great shape. It has lots of power and is very smooth. The interior is in very good shape with no tears in the leather. The tires are almost brand new with plenty of tread.
There are not many of these cars left on the road and is a wonderful car.
Please call or text me of you are interested.
Thank you,
Luke

It’s pretty clear this W124 has been loved. A quick peek in the garage shows that this car comes from a Mercedes loving family and looking at the interior only solidifies it. The leather and carpets are all really clean while the wood and dash are crack free. The exterior looks awfully fresh and even the grill was painted black to freshen it up. What is even better is that this car has the European headlights and I also spy the OEM warning triangle in the trunk lid that wasn’t available for North American cars.

I don’t know how many more ways to explain how great a deal this is.…

Feature Listing: 1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E

Feature Listing: 1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E

The term “Q-ship” is an antiquated phrase dating from the WWII era. Originally used to refer to merchant ships carrying concealed weaponry, among car enthusiasts it’s been repurposed to describe fast, brawny, and exotic sedans that hide their performance beneath conservatively styled exteriors. German manufacturers excel at producing these kinds of cars, and while the E28 M5 might have been the OG “wolf in sheep’s clothing,” the 500E may be the more interesting. The product of a collaboration between Mercedes-Benz and Porsche, and based on the confidence-inspiring W124 chassis, it got a 5.0 liter V8 motor making 326 hp, beefier brakes taken from the R129 SL, upgraded suspension, a wider track and Recaro bucket seats. The saga of assembly of these beasts was a heroic undertaking; Porsche had the capacity on its dormant 959 production line, so a deal was struck where bare chassis were loaded at Daimler-Benz in Unterturkheim and shipped across town to Porsche in Zuffenhausen. There, the revised and widened fenders were mated with the R129 500SL 16-inch wheels and brakes. Porsche also installed the all-aluminum V8. Mercedes-Benz then repatriated the partially complete cars to paint them, but Porsche completed finally assembly. Around 10,000 were completed in this back-and-forth manner.

Sold between 1991 and 1994/5, the 500E could make the 0-60 MPH dash in under 6 seconds and topped out at a limited 155 MPH. Those were very respectable numbers for the time, especially given the size of the car. From the outside, the 500E was virtually indistinguishable from an ordinary W124, the flared fenders and slightly lower stance being the only tell-tale signs.

Year: 1993
Model: 500E
Engine: 5.0 liter V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 66,300 mi
Price: $39,500

1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E, 66,629 Original Miles, 4 Owners From New, Perfect Running Condition

VIN: WDBEA36E4PB886196

This 1993 500E is fantastic example of one of the most important Mercedes Benz models produced and represents an era of collaboration between Mercedes-Benz and Porsche cars that will never be seen again.

Slippery When Wet: ex-Jon Bon Jovi 1994 Mercedes-Benz S500

Slippery When Wet: ex-Jon Bon Jovi 1994 Mercedes-Benz S500

New Jersey: Strip malls, used car lots and Bon Jovi.

Somehow these things lead me down a convoluted path to talk about a 1994 Mercedes-Benz S500. What’s the connection?

From the title, you’ll know of course this is not just any W140. It is a W140 once owned by Jon Bon Jovi, and now it is for sale in New Jersey. At a secondhand used car lot, across from a strip mall. Bingo!

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1994 Mercedes-Benz S500 on eBay

1989 Mercedes-Benz 560SEL

1989 Mercedes-Benz 560SEL

The nice thing about the W126 platform S-class is that you can still find a car suit to suit every budget. A quick look on local Craigslist throws up several examples in various states of repair for a few grand. And some of them look pretty clean. But of course, as the old adage goes, there’s nothing as expensive as a cheap Mercedes. And cars at that end of the market, particularly the V8s, are likely to need some costly repairs at some point or another, just as a matter of course. But what if you were in the enviable position of having an unlimited budget and a desire for a W126 in almost brand-new, showroom condition? What kind of money would you have to spend, and what would it get you? Perhaps this mint condition, range-topping 560SEL with an incredibly low 39k miles on the odometer is the answer.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Mercedes-Benz 560SEL on eBay

1990 Mercedes-Benz 420SEL

1990 Mercedes-Benz 420SEL

Readers of my posts will know that earlier this month I was on the brink of swapping my E34 5-series for a short-wheelbase W126. But the vicissitudes of life have a way of intruding into even the best-laid plans, and at the last minute I had to pull out of the deal. Both the buyer lined up for my car and the seller of the W126 were saintly in their understanding, for which I remain grateful. So I continue to daily drive the 525i. Since I’m going to hang onto it for a while longer, I decided to do a bit of tidying up, replacing the sagging headliner and refreshing some front suspension components. Meanwhile, I continue to keep a watchful eye on W126 market. A short-wheelbase 300SE was top of my list, but closely followed by the 420SEL. With these, you get the additional torque of the 4.2 liter V8, but without the costly-to-repair hydro-pneumatic suspension that comes on the 560.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1990 Mercedes-Benz 420SEL on eBay

1993 Mercedes-Benz 400E

1993 Mercedes-Benz 400E

The rare, high-performance Porsche-Mercedes 500E continues to garner increasing recognition on the collector’s market, pushing prices for nice examples toward $40k. But if you have champagne tastes on a beer budget and want a V8 in your W124, you’d do well to consider a 400E instead. Produced between 1992 and 1996 (it would be rebadged as the E420 and lightly facelifted in 1994), Mercedes intended for the 400E to sit underneath the 500E in the model range. They created it by dropping the 4.2 liter, 32v version of the M119 block into the W124 chassis, beefing up the brakes and suspension while leaving the exterior identical to the more humble 300E. Power output was a healthy 275 hp. While the car was not in the same league as the 500E, this proved more than adequate for high-speed autobahn cruising, which is what these cars do best.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1993 Mercedes-Benz 400E on Atlanta, GA Craigslist