1996 Mercedes-Benz C36

The first Mercedes-Benz to be tuned by AMG after the division became an official Daimler-Benz subsidiary was the C36 AMG. A little over a year after the 190E replacement arrived, the C36 was revealed. It featured a 3.4 liter, 276 horsepower inline six mated exclusively to a four speed automatic transmission. With front brakes from the SL600 and rear brakes from the E420, stopping power was upgraded substantially, along with a lower, tauter suspension. Sixty miles per hour could be achieved in 6.3 seconds, a respectable time for any sports sedan of the era. Other than modified lower body cladding, dual exhaust tips and larger, staggered 17” AMG Monoblock rims, little would tip you off into informing you this was anything but an ordinary C class. One turn of the wheel, however, would tell you differently. This C36 for sale in upstate New York is a very clean example of the genesis of AMG as an in-house brand.

1996 Mercedes-Benz C36 on eBay

Relisting my C36 due to the winning bidder not following through with the sale. I can assist with being available for your shipper to pickup the vehicle, or I can pick you up at Albany International Airport.

I’ve been a car collector and enthusiast for over 20 years. My focus has always been German steel with a strong leaning towards BMW’s, Mercedes and Audi’s of the 1990’s. In my opinion, this was an era when cars had more verve and character than a lot of what’s out there today. If you’ve been thinking of cutting back on lease payments yet still want to drive an iconic high performance sports sedan the C36 does it better than anything in my experience. Its a timeless look, and speaking of look, this car still turns heads at gas stations, Cars and Coffee gatherings and at a recent outing to Lime Rock race park this car garnered more looks and questions than the BMW 335i parked next to it.

The fit and finish and overall quality is something we no longer see. I will never tire of the sound of a bank vault when you close the doors. This is the first official production Mercedes AMG vehicle ever and was hand assembled at Affalterbach. AMG took a plain-jane Mercedes C280 inline 6 motor and massage it to 3.6 liters with forged lightweight pistons, a forged and balanced crank and other heavy duty drivetrain components, the end result was a very grunty 270hp powerplant mated to a 4spd transmission that came from an S class and brakes from the SL.

With one of the last lightweight chassis’s Benz ever put out ( 3300lb curb weight ) the C36 had performance stats equal to V8’s of the day, and even by today’s standards the C36 will run with some of the sports sedans . The car will do 0-60 in just under 6 secs and runs the 1/4 mile in 14.2 ., all this while turning 24-25 mpg. This car actually handles very well in the twisties., and this is with stock suspension. My previous C36 had full Koni suspension with Vogtland Cup coils and lightweight BBS wheels and that car was on-par with a BMW M3 I once owned.

This car has been owned by Mercedes Benz fanatics, all adults over 40. It is un-molested. 100% stock, nothing is changed or missing ! Very rare to find in this condition as most of what I’ve come across has been lowered, or modded to some effect. This car was also featured a few years ago in the Mercedes Benz Club of America’s ” Star” magazine by its previous owner who regularly writes for auto magazines. The article was entitled ” Living with Rivals” . It was a comparo between the C36 AMG and the 97 BMW M3, which at one time the owner owned both.

One of the reasons why I strongly feel that this is THE best condition C36 in the USA is that all the major issues that potentially plague these cars once they hit 100K miles have all been addressed already with invoices from a Mercedes only facility. As robust as the 3.6 motor is, they all succumb to a headgasket failure due to a somewhat inferior gasket that AMG used at the time. A few years ago, an updated gasket was made available and once the change has been made its pretty much a lifer.

So in 2011 this car got the headgasket job and the head was re-surfaced, matched and new head bolts were utilized. Also, at the same time and shop, the timing cover, tensioner, pads and VC gasket were done as well. The job was perfect as the car has gone about 10K miles since then and its dry as a bone everywhere!

Also some other key services were performed in the last 16 months:
-Throttle body actuator was rebuilt ( $ 800 )
-New AC condenser ( $ 600 )
-New oem Fuel pump ( $ 300 )
-New spark plugs & coils ( $ 350 )
-transmission fluid service w/ oem fluids.
-Brakes F/R new pads, rotors OEM
-tie rods bushings, tie rods
-strut mounts in the front
-New Goodyear GT tires 225/245’s ( they have about 3K miles on them now )

So to sum it up, this car is good to go for the next 100K miles. It pulls very hard, very smooth and the car goes down the road like a new C36 probably did. No noises, clunks , thumps or anything. No warning lights. AC blows ice cold, all gauges work and illuminate at night. No burnt out bulbs. All windows , power door locks and remote keys work as they should. 2 key fobs are included. The interior is in excellent to mint condition. No funny odors. The C36 smells amazing due to the combination of hides and MB tek materials from that era.
The paint is a solid 8+ condition. All original except the very bottom of the front airdam which I had resprayed to get rid of all the typical road pits from years of driving. The silver paint looks fantastic ! I can only see 2 very miniscule pin size dings. Its very hard to spot them as the car is silver.

Only a garage kept car can attain this preservation as this car was spoiled. I have the clear NY state title in my possession as well as the last 5 yrs worth of service invoices. The original owners manual folio is complete as in includes as are the 4 very rare and always missing C36 AMG floor mats. All this car needs is gas. No stories, and nothing but big smiles to its next owner/caretaker. Pick it up and drive it to California and then some….it won’t flinch at the trip.

Normally, I’d be averse to buying a high performance from the Northeast with over 100,000 miles. However, the owner of this C36 should be commended for maintaining this car to a level which makes it appear like a car a fraction of its age. Average values for a C36 these days tend to run in the $6,000 to $8,000 range. Given the owner’s level of care and maintenance items attended to, anything around $8,000 or so should be just about right for this car. If the mileage was well under 100,000, there might be the room to return even a bit more in terms of resale. Only 5,200 of these understated beasts ever left the factory. I’d say that statistic makes this German hot rod well worth preserving. Good luck to the owner in the sale this time around, as this car deserves to find a good home.


I’ve Got The Itch: 1996 Porsche 993 Cabriolet For Sale

I have had this thing going on in the back of my head, my wife calls it “the voices.”  Well they have been strong and they want another Porsche.  I am guessing it is a 993, preferably a soft top, you know because Oregonians get so much sun.  Something a little like this…

1996 Porsche 993 Cabriolet:

From the seller –

“Stunning 1996 993 Convertible Low miles, Rebuilt Engine less than 1K miles ago, Rare Color combo.

Very nice paint and super clean Chestnut Brown Interior.

Beautiful 1996 Porsche 993 911 C2 Convertible. Polar Silver metallic with Chestnut Brown leather interior. Only 77,XXX original miles. 6 Speed manual transmission, AC with climate control, keyless entry, 18 turbo Chrome twists wheels, cruise control Porsche, 6-CD changer aluminum gauges star shield on hood supple leather seats. Includes Manuals, Receipts and service records, Original Tool wrap, Air Pump and chestnut brown Convertible to Cover.

Engine was rebuilt less than 1K miles ago, Runs excellent, Fresh brakes and Clutch.
Rebuilt included, all new bearings, full head job including guides, chains, rails, ect.

$37,000 obo

911, 930, 993 trades welcomed.”

Neat car, I love the interior but this is coming from someone that owned a SLK with a similar color treatment.  It looks to be in wonderful condition and will treat the new owner very well.

The question I have is, why did the motor go at 76k miles?  I know it is a Porsche and there really is no rhyme or reason to these sorts of things.  But the fallacy is that the air cooled motors are more reliable than those new fangled water cooled engines.

Guess not!

All things being equal I would rather have a rebuilt motor than one in questionable shape I suppose.  At $37k it is no bargain but it is one of the last of the air cooled 911’s with a rebuilt motor, in a rare color combination, in very nice shape.

This does nothing to calm the voices.


Big Bird: 600 HP 1996 Porshce 993 For Sale With No Reserve

There are gobs of built Porsche 911’s out there, some are done well and others… not so much.  This Big Bird is one of the nicest builds I have seen in some time.  600 hp and no stone left unturned.  Buy the buyer’s estimation they have $300k into her and it is up for auction at no reserve.

1996 Porsche 993 Twin Turbo Twin Plug:

From the seller –

“Selling my ultra custom 1996 Porsche twin turbo-twin plug 3.8 liter powerhouse with over 600HP… aka BIG BIRD.

This is an amazing car and hope you enjoy reading about it as much as I have enjoyed driving her.  She was last on display at the Legends of the Autobahn meet in Monterey California summer 2011. See the PCA spotlight video below with PCA president Manny Alban featuring the car.

Where do I start? The motor is probably the most fascinating part of the car and is a crowd pleaser. The car was designed and engineered by S-CARGO racing in San Rafael,CA.   They are one of the top Porsche air cooled specialists in the west coast. Known for building unbelievable air cooled Porsches. Twin plug conversions along with custom fabrication and design are their forte. Thank you Rob and Mark and the entire S-Cargo staff for putting in the hard work and building this masterpiece. The car was built so that it would be reliable enough for daily driving and simple enough for another Porsche shop to work on if needed.

Now more about the car. It started out as a completely stock 1996 Porsche C4S.  So much has been changed, upgraded and modified that the car is far from stock. The car was meant to be a dream car build and everything done first class with open check book.

Over 300k has been invested in this beauty with records and documentation of build. The motor is a completely rebuilt twin turbo 3.8 with twin plug (12 spark) conversion. It has 2 plugs firing per cylinder. Essential to achieve optimum power for high performance engines. Since high compression ratios are used, twin-ignition allows all of the power benefit to be gained from the increase. Twin-plug equipped 911 and 930′s run much crisper and cleaner with lower cylinder head temperatures and improved throttle response. Plus, a twin-plug 911 is much less prone to plug fouling with today’s fuel.

Besides the damage to one’s bank account, there isn’t one drawback to installing this system and enjoying the benefits in throttle response, power and great drivability that twin-ignition adds to any 911. Quite a difference!. In some cases, it is a necessity to realize the maximum gains from a complete set of engine modifications.

Over 100k alone was spent on the motor build and modifying it not including the cost of the initial motor (about 30k). The turbos were replaced with massive Garrett GT30 custom polished turbos.  The ECU was programmed by Protomotive.   The heads were port and polished. GT3 oil pump was added and an additional oil cooler was added in front bumper for extra cooling.

The transmission was dissembled and upgraded with Guards GT4060 limited slip differential, and viscous coupling, high performance clutch and completely resealed.   The real beauty of this build is the specialized fabrication and fitment of the parts. The heater box, headers, and exhaust were all carefully crafted for this car. Even small details like the turbo inlet tubes made of plastic were replaced with custom fabricated aluminum lines for reliability and performance.  All of the work is beautifully done and very expensive but well worth it.  She is a rolling work of art and people love to see and hear it run.

She is not hard to miss. The speed yellow paint is gleaming bright. All bodywork done by UACC in Burlingame,CA. The body was professionally refinished in its factory color Speed Yellow and rain gutters have been shaved just like the real Yellowbird RUF Porsche.  Paint job and custom body cost over 20k.  The RUF body kit(not obtainable any more) was carefully fit to the body. Recaro A8 seat backs and roll bar were color matched and installed.  Immediately upon completion it was sent to S-Cargo racing for its transformation.”

So much to like about this car.  It is one thing to built a spare no expense car but to do it in such a way that blends with the overall purpose of the car is truly extraordinary.  It’s all here, motor, paint and body, interior, brakes, clutch, transmission were all addressed.  This is important because if there were a weak spot the 600HP motor would find it.

The best part is this 993 is offered at no reserve.  Current bidding sits at $73k with a few days to go.  I think a final bid in the $85k area would be appropriate and fair for all parties involved.  It takes a great deal of courage to sell a car such as this with no reserve, kudos to the seller on building such a fine 993.


Not 508 Compliant: 1996 Volkswagen Golf Harlequin VR6

I love odd cars. Everything from the Citroën XM to the NSU Ro80 gets me going. So anytime one of these wildly colored Volkswagen Golf Harlequins come up for sale, I take note. I loved and miss my MkIII GTI 2.0 to this day. A much better drive than the subsequent MkIV I owned and chuckable in a similar manner that my Cooper S is (albeit with less sharp steering and suspension reactions). Here is what could possibly be the only VR6 equipped Harlequin for sale up in Massachusetts over on VW Vortex.

1996 Volkswagen Golf Harlequin VR6 for sale on VW Vortex

The seller states:

Hi Everyone, after a lot of debating with myself I am selling my harlequin. I have owned it for 5 years and during that time i have basically gone through and done everything (including many upgrades) that ever needs to be replaced or breaks. Everything was done the right way, no shortcuts, I had planned on keeping this car for the long haul but i don’t have the time to enjoy it like it should be. The Car has been put away for the past 8 winters in dry storage, oil changed every 3k or yearly whichever comes first (I have hardly put 2k on the car for the past 2 summers.)

The car is an absolute blast to drive and turns more heads then a ferarri (no lie). Car is very reliable and ready to go!

Here are the specs:

1996 Golf Harlequin #19/264
Pistachio Green Base

o VR6 Swap with ~138K
o Recent Timing Chain Service with All Hardware, Water Pump, Thermostat <10K o Mk4 Metal Head Gasket o Gruvenparts Crack Pipe o Yarrowsport Billet Belt Tensioner o Autotech 10lb Steel Flywheel o Black Forest Industries Stage 1 Poly Motor Mounts Trans o 02A Rebuilt with New 1st, 2nd, and Reverse Syncros. <10K o TDI 5th gear (for highway cruising) o Clutchnet Stage 2 Clutch (375 ft-lb) o Peloquins Differential o New Empi Driveshafts <10K o Black Forest Industries Stage 1 Poly Trans Mount Suspension o Complete VR6 Suspension Swap o Koni Yellow Adjustable Shocks and Struts o H&R Race Springs o R32 Front Control Arm Bushings o All Suspension Bushings Replaced <15K Exterior o Euro Bumpers o Hella Dual Round Headlights o OEM Fog Lights o New OEM Front Fenders o New OEM Hatch Brakes o Mintex Red Box Pads <10K o New OEM Rotors <10K o GAP Braided Stainless Brake Hose o ATE Super Blue Brake Fluid Wheels/Tires o VW Monte Carlo 17” rims o 205/35/17 Falken Azenis RT615 Tires (less than half worm) Im sure there are more things i have forgotten. Asking: $10500 OBO

The seller is pretty honest and lengthy in his description and the car does look to be in good shape for the mileage covered and the fact that it is a Northeastern vehicle. $10,500 is steep for a MkIII Golf of any sort. If it was more around the $7,500 to $8,000 mark, I’d be tempted. The market for these outside of the Volkswagen community seems to be thin from what I can gather, but I’m sure there are folks out there who are eager to get their hands on what was an interesting marketing stunt by one of the world’s largest automakers.


1996 Mercedes-Benz C36 AMG

The C43 and C55 W202 Mercedes-Benzes were popular enthusiast hot rods, mainly because they matched massive V8 power in a small, relatively unassuming package. They also tend to overshadow the first collaboration between AMG after it became an in-house tuner, the C36. Packing a bored out, 3.6 straight six good for 276 horsepower. Here’s a clean example for sale up in Wisconsin with a relatively low 72,000 miles.

The seller states:

This is a very limited edition, ultra rare 1996 Mercedes-Benz C36 AMG, 72k miles, silver metallic with black leather, brand new tires just installed, all serviced up and ready to enjoy or put it away and let it appreciate!

This car is impossible to find ESPECIALLY with such low mileage. It is right out of the owners personal collection and is very hard to find, especially with such low miles! Only a couple things to note; A/C blows warm, will need a charge and some of the wheels have some clear coat peeling. Everything else works as it should. Comes with 1 key and remote.

With only 5,200 C36 AMG models produced, you surely won’t see yourself coming and going in this car. Then again, for not much more money, you could have the later V8 version. But it won’t ever have the title of being the car that started the AMG craze that has been going strong for the last 15 years.


1996 BMW Z3 007 Edition with 16 (yes, 16) miles

Didn’t get a chance to buy one of the first BMW Z3s when they first arrived? Well, here’s your shot. Made famous by the James Bond film, Goldeneye, the Z3 roadster was one of the hottest introductions in BMW history and of its time. This particular example has to be one of the lowest mileage 1996 Z3s in existence, outside of what is housed in BMW’s museums.

The seller states:

This is a badged “007 James Bond Roadster” with only 16 miles. This rare BMW roadster comes with power seats, wood grain interior and tan leather seating. This car is in perfect condition. It is a local California vehicle and belonged to a love of all luxury and classic vehicles.

While the Z1 holds the title of the first modern day BMW roadster, the Z3 popularized the idea and got production at the Spartanburg, South Carolina plant up and running, along with a few errant 318i sedans thrown in here and there. With about a week left, the car is hovering just shy of $20,000, but there is a reserve. Even though this is a special edition tied to a popular movie, the automatic holds this back from being a truly sporty proposition. Granted, the 1.9 liter four cylinder won’t light your hair on fire, but the 5 speed helps make the most of the power.


1996 BMW 318ti Sport Package

Before the introduction of the MINI Cooper and the 1 series, BMW gave the small car segment a shot back in the mid 1990s with the introduction of the hatchback version of the E36, otherwise known as the ti. Clean, low mileage examples are rare these days, but here’s a clean, original example with the desirable sport package for sale on eBay:

The seller states:

Super clean real nice. Comes complete with all Book’s,Manuals,service records and two sets of remote key’s. This BMW is in excellent condition inside and out! Serviced and 100% road ready. Timing chain. All tuned up. Motor and transmission run 100%. Rotors and pads are new, tires, exhaust, hoses, belts, fluids all good. Front end and rear all good. air condition blows ice cold. There are no engine indicator lights on. I would drive this BMW anywhere! This vehicle is immaculate! always pampered and detailed! Never abused! The engine runs 100% with no problems detected. The under carriage is dry with no visible leaks. The 5-speed manual transmission shifts smoothly through all gears and performs as it should. The suspension is good and the vehicle is responsive to all driving conditions. This vehicle provides precise handling, effortless performance, and an excellent and comfortable ride. The cockpit is well designed with all controls at your finger tips. The acceleration is spirited and fuel economy respectable up to 29 mpg. The previous owner took pride in maintaining the absolute beautiful condition of this affordable BMW 318Ti Sport package hatchback coupe. The paint is glossy with No major blemishes. see pictures! The interior is in excellent condition. The Leather seats are like new and show little wear. The carpets are clean and fresh. Non smoke . No odors. No pets. Two sets of floor mats for winter and summer. The leather steering wheel, Door panels and Dash are in great shape. The carpets are clean and fresh. Do Not let the highway miles fool you this unit runs and looks great! Please do not hesitate to bid. This vehicle runs and looks great!

With 170k miles, anything over $5,000 would be a bit much for this car. $3,500 to $4,000 is probably a solid bet for what would be a good, most likely hassle free and efficient commuter vehicle that would stand out from the herd.


Another Mercedes Renntech SL74, really?

We have seen three of these Renntech SL74 beasts show up for sale this summer, which is pretty unbelievable. Our previous finds:


Sometimes an owner will see another seller claiming to have a really rare car and take the opportunity to show of his own to show the other guy he isn’t the only one. Sometimes following up one rare listing with another lets a seller piggy back on some of the excitement or the initial sale or lets them judge interest or gauge market value. Perhaps that’s the case with this third SL74.
This one is a 1996 in white found by reader Nik. It is a bit more showy than the other two we saw this year. Chromed intakes, vented hood, embroidered logo headrests, big sound system in the trunk, etc. The specs are right inline with the other two we’ve seen. The seller quotes an investment of over $200,000 and lists the upgrades as follows:


V12 engine producing 595 BHP, 605 lbs-ft @4000 RPM. 0-60 is second 3.9 seconds and a top speed of 200 MPH 1/4 times of 11.9


Renntech 7.4 liter engine conversion (stage 4) $49,500:

high performance engine rebuilt, performance intake and exhaust camshafts, ported/polished cylinder heads, larger f1 valves, stainless steal resonator bypass, stainless renntech sports rear muffler.

Renntech top speed removal $1,500

First gear start transmission valve body $1,350

Renntech transmission upgrade with limited slip $7,790

Downpipes all metal catalyzers $7,000

Renntech 14″ brakes $5,760

Renntech oil cooler kit $1,250

New convertible top and brand new wheels and brand new tires.

front 245/35/19

rear 275/30/19

Pioneer DVR

Full AMG BODY Kit includes: side skirts, front bumper, rear bumper and rear spoiler. Also comes with rear seats.

includes: hard top cover

Please check out this link. http://www.renntechmercedes.com/article_files/cnd0898.pdf

With a day left this one is up to just under $17,000 reserve not met. The Buy-It-Now price is $28,900. As with the others I’ll say this again, that is a heck of a lot of depreciation. Unlike the others though this one has actually seen substantial use at 91,000 miles. That’s nice to see.