1994 Mercedes 500E / E500 with RENNtech mods

One of our favorite Q-ships, the 500E picked up the torch for Mercedes in 1990 to continue their tradition of the high output V8 in an otherwise stately yet sedate four door.

1994 E500 with RENNtech mods on eBay

This particular car is the last year of the Porsche built special. As a 1994 its official company designation swapped with the rest of the lineup to E500 from 500E. This car comes debadged for added stealth, though the bulging wheel arches are an easy distinguishing factor from a more average W124 model.

Mercedes and Porsche really did the 500E right, it wasn’t just a big engine stuffed into a chassis that wasn’t prepared. The engineers and designers took time to carefully consider what they wanted as the outcome for the 500E and as such made proper modifications to other systems.  One can not say this enough: The 500E is not a 300E with a 5.0 liter engine.  Giving the car special handbuilt construction gave Mercedes an extra marketing point, it gives the 500E itself a hint of the uniqueness  that harkens to earlier days of coachbuilt classics.

Owners paid significantly for the pleasure of driving the 500E new. Prices topped out at just about $90,000. To put that in perspective, at the time, a BMW M5 would set you back only in the mid $60k range and you could just about buy two Audi S4 models for the price of one 500E.

A total of apx. 10,300 500Es slowly rolled out of the factory, those aren’t big numbers, but they aren’t as rare as other Merc sleepers like the 300SEL 6.3 or the 450SEL 6.9.  It is important to note that the 500E is not an AMG model, this is sometimes confused. The 500E came at a time when AMG was still not fully under control of Mercedes and these were 100% factory cars. AMG did produce the awesome E60, which was a 500E with a 6.0 liter powerplant.

When you inspect a 500E up close it is rare to find problems in build quality, more often any problems are do solely to owner neglect.

The car featured here comes into us through a reader at RENNtech (we get giddy if we pop the hood of a Benz and see those trademark carbon fiber intakes.)

This 500E has covered 80,000 miles and looks great in fitting Mercedes brilliant silver. Though, there is at least one black 500E out there that has been “murdered out” that caught my eye in the past. (I split the difference with my 70 250C, black roof, silver body) Other than paint the exterior of this 500E is complimented by proper 18″ AMG monoblocks. More importantly its looks aren’t hampered by the ugly sunken U.S. sealed beam units previous model year U.S. market cars had. E-code headlights on earlier domestic 500Es is almost a must in my book.

Other mods on this 500E are ones you like to see, appropriate and tasteful. Those include over $7,000 worth from RENNtech. Thee first gear start valve body is a popular addition for Benz from this era and allows for longer, spirited, pulls in first, without losing streetabilty under regular driving. Combining that with the traction control defeat switch will allow for some tail happy adventures. Keep the car out of the hands of teenage drivers to avoid unneeded transmission/driveline wear and tear.

A few extra ponies are added to the stock 320 with the addition of the RENNtech carbon airbox, chip, and stainless exhaust.

The seller states the car has been serviced for the past decade at Mercedes Benz of Memphis. There isn’t a lot of description in the ad, but perhaps it isn’t needed. Those in the 500E market know what they are looking at and the ad appears to be a simple, honest presentation of a solid specimen. We unfortunately have become quite cynical with our experience in the world of vintage cars so we get a little nervous with brief car ads and always make sure to ask lots of questions about what works, what doesn’t, what’s missing, service records etc.. With a vehicle that could be purchased for potential collector value we’d encourage a PPI, particularly at this $25,000 ask.

You can get a 500E for less than this one, but top quality low mile collector candidates can bring $40,000. Without knowing more about this particular car I don’t find the ask unreasonable and can see it being considered well priced a few years from now, but it may take several listings on eBay before someone takes the plunge. In the world of eBay bargain hunters it may be better to start with a lower ask to try and get a couple seller’s in the competing mood. When you look at what $25k will get you in terms of classic German iron I feel that if the seller knocked a couple thousand off the price a few more potential buyers will show up.

Great car.

~Evan

1985 Mercedes 190E 3.6 AMG

We try not to give attention to seller’s that have poor ads for their cars, hence this one not getting written up earlier. However, as the auction winds down to the last couple hours I felt this car warrants a quick note.

The seller of this car doesn’t seem to know much about what they are selling. It is a 190E that has a 3.6 liter inline six, seller calls it a V-6, stuffed under the hood by AMG. This isn’t the only one of these out there, several folks have figured this conversion out as well as the ones that were done at the factory by AMG or by Brabus. The seller says the car has extensive documentation, but doesn’t provide any of it in the listing. The seller doesn’t even include a picture of the rear of the car for badge identification. The car does appear to have blacked out tailights to compliment the blacked out grille, which looks good.

The car has 27,000 miles and a 5 speed, which make it very attractive. Without more info though, this seller’s $35,000 ask price will never be met.

 

~Evan

1990 Mercedes 560SEL AMG & 1988 560SEL Lorinser

Fans of the big body Benz W126 models are in luck with two special models on eBay right now.

First off is a 1988 U.S. spec 560SEL decked out in the Lorinser kit with 110,904 miles. The seller states this is a two owner car that has been well maintained. They have the original sticker with the car and its price is listed as $70,160, not including the $12,000 that the Lorinser body kit and rims added. There isn’t much more info about the car, but it does come with some spare parts. The car looks pretty good, it has tinted tail lights which, along with the color matched rims and grille, help the blacked out effect. There are white face gauge set on the inside with red accents, which stand out. The Lorinser kit is subtly different from the AMG kit; this car comes with the original Lorinser Sport Service badge. The car is begging for someone to toss the sunken U.S. spec headlights. Bidding sits at $3,550 with three days left and the reserve not met.

 

If you like the 560SEL above, but it just doesn’t quite fit the look you like in terms of your Miami Vice style Benz sedans then this following car shows a bit more refinement. This 1990 560SEL AMG is close to the peak in terms of the W126 sedans. Hat tip to reader Andrew for noticing this on Canadian eBay. Comparing this Euro car side by side with the U.S. Lorinser model above you can see how its lines are smoother and the AMG package just seems a bit tighter. The air dams and rocker aero package are a bit better sculpted, the Euro headlights make for a smooth front face, and the blacked out effect is completed with more success with the chrome around the doors being body color as well, though the AMG three piece wheels do retain a chrome lip.

This car has 64,178 miles and a long list of proper modifications. The Japanese market AMG logo “ducktail” spoiler mounted on this car, never all that appealing to me, I prefer the more traditional third brake light AMG straight spoiler, is a rare option. Again comparing this 560 to the one above you can really see how the AMG suspension components this car has gives it a lower wider stance. The seller lists this car as being a 9.8 out of 10 on the outside, with new clear coat and a 10 out of 10 on the inside. The 300 km/h speedo and white face AMG gauge set struck my as different and it took me a second to figure out why. The reason is all the yellow needles have been replaced with blacked out pieces, attention to detail there. The whole car does look fine.

Other parts on this car include the power rear sunshade, the heated power seats, and the 2.65 limited slip diff with second gear start switch, this can be swapped to a numerically higher diff, AMG offered several, for more sporting stop light performance, but you will lose some of the long haul highway munching characteristics this car is built for.
The seller lists the AMG parts as:

AMG paint scheme ( blacked out chrome finish )
AMG suspension [springs and shocks with stamps on them]
AMG complete exhaust system from the down pipes with AMG catalytic converter
AMG spoilers [ Japan version front and the so called “ducktail” ]
AMG 3 pc. 17″ staggered rims
AMG transmission with higher shifting points
AMG steering wheel
AMG cluster with 300 Km with correct reading of speed
AMG door thresholds on all 4 doors
AMG center wooden console
AMG wooden shift knob complete with logo
AMG authentic sticker on glove box wooden trim

I also note there is an AMG badge placed on top of the period car phone. A small Mercedes trophy sits in the console perhaps from a car show the seller took the car to.

This car won’t sell cheaply, but will not bring the same amount as an AMG engine modified car. Heavy bidding has it at $12,000 with reserve not met and five days left.

If you have your own 500 or 560 and want to add some life to it, there is a set of genuine AMG headers for sale right now on eBay for $2,300.

 

~Evan

1988 Mercedes Benz 560SEC 6.0 AMG Widebody

We have listed some of this seller’s other Mercedes SEC AMG cars before. This one has the big 6 liter SOHC engine. With this car looking immaculate and having only covered 21,500 miles you can expect it to bring a high price. This car has been gone over and has fresh oil, tires, battery, fuel injectors, and rotors. The seller really plays up the investment angle in his ad description and while I don’t think these can really be considered the gullwing of their day, I do agree that prices for these low production, genuine AMG, cars is creeping upward. This one is up over $24,000 in heavy bidding with the reserve not met and 7 days still to go.

 

~Evan

1985 Mercedes 540SEC AMG Rare widebody find

I had only days earlier posted over on another blog about how rare the AMG 5.4 liter engine is and then this one shows up on eBay.

The car is in New Zealand now and has 51,000 miles, which is pretty low. It looks like it had been living in Japan, despite being left hand drive. It looks black in the photos, but the data plate paint code shows blauschwarz / midnight blue.

It has all the right AMG parts, the widebody kit, the fat AMG Penta wheels, the correct AMG 300 km/h speedo, steering wheel, and trunk badge. It even has the AMG exhaust including headers. The widebody kit will catch the average car guy’s eye, but the small blacked out 5.4 badge on the trunk will really turn the head of a Mercedes enthusiast. You will be hard pressed to find many Benzs out their wearing that badge. Interestingly the data plate on the car lists the code for the stock trunk badge delete so it may this car was destined from birth to get the AMG treatment.

The current owner has spent some big time dollars to get the car sorted since his purchase of $21,000 in 2009. He states it has $10,000 worth of new electrics, rubber, paint, and other detailing.

The seller includes numbers for those of you looking to verify:
VIN # WDB1260441A179770
Chassis # 1260441A179770
Engine # 117963 12 084502
Transmission # 722311 02 674399

The car is sitting at $9,300 with less than a day to go.

There is also a video of this car online here:

 

There are a couple of videos of other 5.4 liter AMG engined SECs online:

~Evan

Lust-worthy CLK63 AMG Black Series for sale

No massive back story here, it’s pretty simple: my european car came today featuring a modified CLK63 AMG Black Series and I can’t get it off my mind. I re-watched the unrivaled Top Gear segment and had to live the dream the only way I can: eBay ads. It’s simplicity, audacity, and brutality make it perhaps the most lust-worthy post-1980s car I can think of. I want it, and I want to rage in it.

So how to rationalize this dark fantasy? Well, I certainly can’t in my current paygrade, but if I were in the position to spend $70k or more on a sports car, I would overlook the newer M3, the RS5, R8, CTS-V, GTR, the myriad 911s, etc. etc. as they are positively weaksauce compared to this… this is the kind of unique, raw, incredible German machine that I would choose. It’s badass in a way the Aston Martin Vantage V8 only wishes it could be. All 18,600 of glorious driving miles are at around $50k at time of writing with 4 days left; other buy-it-nows range from $75-90k. I’d give organs to have this car in the garage.

-NR

2005 Mercedes-Benz C55

Beginning in the mid 1990s, the AMG C classes from Mercedes-Benz have proved to be quite popular over the years, with a range of breathed on six-cylinder and V8 models appearing in the lineup. Here we have a clean, two owner, C55 for sale in Pennsylvania.

The seller states:

This auction is for a 2005 Mercedes Benz C55 Sport Sedan. I am the second owner of this vehicle. The vehicle is in immaculate condtion. It has been professionally maintained at a Mercedes Benz dealership since new. It has had all its regular maintence performed (Transmission service, coolant service, brake fluid service, oil changes, etc.). It has brand new rear tires with less than 200 miles on them. Front tires at 50%, front and rear brakes at 50%. The vehicle needs nothing. Runs excellent, looks great. Only reason I am selling is due to the fact I have too many vehicles and its time to get rid of a few. This car is very enjoyable to drive. I will definately miss it!

I sold my 2007 C230 Sport with 27k miles for $20,500 two months ago. Even though this is two years older, prices on the last of the W203 AMGs have finally reached somewhat attainable levels. Anything with 300 or more horsepower in a car this size is a riot to drive. I know this first hand, as I’ve driven several of these over the years. Even considering rising gas prices, a C55 in this kind of condition would be a smart investment in the coming years. I mean, where else were you going to put your money, the stock market?

-Paul

1990 560SEC AMG Widebody

This is a genuine AMG car with all the appropriate markings. The car has 37,000 miles and the seller wants $28,000. That is a lot less than the original cost. This would have been very close to the top Mercedes two door you could purchase when it was new. The ask price is high, but genuine unmolested AMG cars can bring big dollars. The car would get close to $30,000 if it had an AMG modified engine along with the bodywork, but this one retains its stock 5.6 liter V8. The seller seems to have had some confusion as to whether the car had a 6 liter AMG mill. Confusion like that can be a bit of a warning sign because having the original documentation and provenance on a car like this adds a lot to the value. The seller does state he has the original “guarantee” from AMG.
AMG speedometer and interior badges add to the package. Plus very expensive original AMG three piece rims fill out the widened wheel arches.
The description could use some more depth and I really don’t understand why people selling cars like this don’t spend a little extra time getting decent photographs.
As always AMG cars from this era and earlier are collectible and should retain their value well. This one is a bit costly in today’s market, but sure looks good.

~Evan

1995 Mercedes Benz C36 AMG in Red

Not many of the 5200 C36 cars produced were in red. This model with 166,000 miles on it still looks nice and bright. The seller wants $5,000 to take it home. Not a bad price for what some consider the successor to the sporty 190E 2.5-16v. 1997 is the best year of the C36, but the earlier models, like this 1995, were just as exciting under the hood with nearly 300 horsepower from the M3 fighting inline 6. For a car with some hand built AMG craftsmanship the price seems like a bargain, however you may actually have some room to negotiate as high mileage C36s in more standard silver and black do change hands for less. The fact that this car has dealer service records, if they check out, it is worth paying the full $5k ask. The car is on Craigslist LA for $5,500. This C36 also seems to have avoided boy racer add-ons that clutter up the wolf in sheep’s clothes intention. People will look back at the C36 as one of grandfathers of what took AMG from specialty tuner to more mainstream masses.

~Evan

2005 Mercedes CLK DTM AMG

This week for my post representing what would be awesome to have delivered to my garage by Santa the first thing that came to my mind was CLK DTM. I looked for several days and didn’t see what I wanted, after all they only made 100 of these and I want a silver one.
Then call it a holiday miracle one pops up for sale today on eBay.

This isn’t the most beautiful car in the world, but it is guaranteed to catch people’s eye with its muscular stance. The bulging fenders, deep bumper vents, and big spoiler all speak to the purpose of this machine. The supercharged 5.5 liter puts out almost 600 horsepower, more than its namesake Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters race car. The number is deceiving since many AMG cars these days make so much horsepower, and though not a lightweight the DTM does come in on the scale under most other recent AMG vehicle.

The DTM’s weight is partly due to the retained interior comfort features. It does lose the rear seat in favor of an integrated stiffening strut and typical cushy Mercedes front seats are skipped out for significantly racier models with harnesses. A good amount of carbon fiber also helps with weight reduction. Its 220MPH speedometer might help you impress the parking lot crowd. The paddle shift five speed lets you impress those in the passenger seat as you skip to 60 in under 4 seconds on your way to a 200MPH top speed.

The CLK DTM represents some of the rawest most exclusive Mercedes power to ever hit the streets. Not quite on the same level of outrageousness as the CLK GTR, but with far better usability. You can find this kind of power elsewhere for far less money, for instance
with 6000 miles is pushing 645 horsepower and it costs “only” $98,900. You can even spend $100,000 less and still get a brand new top of line AMG, but it won’t be as special as one of these.

This dealer is asking $374,900 for the 3500 mile car. That is a hefty premium for rarity. Plus some people might mistake it for a “typical” AMG car or one of the few boy racer clone DTMs that are out there. Cars like these don’t change hands all that often so sellers can ask whatever they want. Fortunately a new owner would be able to drive the car around for awhile and then name his own price. If you are a convertible driver you can keep browsing the classifieds as they built 80 topless models too, though they have a limited top speed slightly lower than the hardtop. Seeing a car like this with the top down and the giant spoiler looks very odd. All is forgiven with a blip of the throttle and the awesome exhaust note.

I hope Santa has a big sleigh.

~Evan