Very rarely do the fine people at Mercedes-Benz perpetrate a major mistake. But when they do, oh boy. Maybe it’s just the nature of the beast of car manufacturing that when mistakes do happen, it’s usually of grand proportion. Today’s car, a 2002 S600, is one of those mistakes. It’s not the sub-par build quality and lack of longevity that makes this car an absolute nightmare, it’s what is under the hood they makes this W220 almost radioactive to any buyer.
Engine: 5.8 liter V12
Transmission: 5-speed automatic
Mileage: 138,599 mi
Price: Buy It Now $3,445
2002 S600 Mercedes that runs and drives but has an oil leak from the top of the motor in back. The motor has 389 horsepower. It delivers it very smooth. The transmission shifts so nice through all of the gears. The wheels are correct factory S600 wheels wrapped in as new Michelin tires. The brakes stop this heavy car easy. The exhaust is all in good order. The battery works just fine and is the big battery. The car goes down the road so smooth. The inside is loaded up with heated, cooled massage front seats, wood all over the place, Suede headliner, leather dash, steering wheel. Heated power back seats with lumbar. The navigation and Bose system is great!! The car has a clean clear title in hand ready to transfer. No extra fees in my auction. The 2 coil packs and the set of xenon headlights are worth $3000 alone!! Make me a fair
This problem with this W220 is the 5.8 liter M137 V12 engine. There is a reason why this engine only lasted for two years in the United States before moving to a 5.5 liter twin-turbo M275. The M137 is notorious for out of round cylinder walls and oil fouling basically making the engine a giant paper weight. The excessive blow-by oil fouls all of the downstream oxygen sensors. So you say, “what’s one or two O2 sensors?” Except there are eight on this S600 which adds up to a total cost of $1,600. What if you damage the cats too? There are six of them at a cost of $8,000. At this rate, you’ll be living on the street with a bunch of real cats.
For this specific S600, the seller comes out and says this car leaks oil from the top of the motor towards the rear. This the dreaded M137 oil cooler issue. There is a long metal plate in the middle of the oil cooler. You need to access this to install new o-rings to fix this leak before you fry your transmission control unit with hot oil also turning the transmission into a boat anchor. The oil leak isn’t something minor when this happens, it goes from a few drops to a quart rather quickly. This job doesn’t sound so bad until you hear that you need to pull the heads to access the oil cooler. It’s only a $350 part but the killer is the many many hours it takes to pull the heads on a Mercedes V12. This entire repair basically starts at a few thousand dollars and only goes up if they find vacuum or breathers hoses that need replaced.
So should you buy a reasonably clean 2002 S600 with runs and drives just fine for $3,500? Of course not! You are signing up to spend thousands of dollars and be potentially be left with parts and scrap value once something catastrophic happens. If I was forced to buy own this car as-is, I would drive it until the inevitable happens then start cannibalizing it, because there are plently of rusty W220’s out there looking for parts.
“It’s more than just a car, it’s a glimpse into the future”. That’s what Jeremy Clarkson said about the W221 S-Class when he first drove one back in 2006. He wasn’t lying. The S-Class has always been the peek into what’s to come for regular consumer cars 10 years later. Options like Brake Assist, Active Blind Spot Assist and a list of other things were standard in the S-Class in 2007 are now part of the marketing campaign touting such features for companies like Subaru. Now if you wanted all these futuristic tech in your car and wanted it paired to a twin-turbo V12 just because…well, why not, you look no further than the S600.
Last week I featured a Mercedes with a giant V12. Today’s car is no different — although with a little more factory flavor. This 1998 S70 AMG hails from Norway in case you even needed to outrun a herd of reindeer. But in all seriousness, this W140 is a rare breed. It was, in typical S-Class fashion, a money is no object car. More importantly, this car continued its life like a money is no object car. So let’s take a better look at this world traveler S70 AMG.
After a change in nomenclature in 1994, the Mercedes-Benz S-class coupe would again see a model name change in 1997. Renamed the CL class, this would be the moniker for the large coupe up until this current model year, when it would once again be known as the S-class coupe. Who knows what the rationale behind these name changes might be, but it’s rather remarkable this big two-door has survived throughout the years, facing economic downturns and energy crunches alike. This 1996 S600 Coupe is not for the faint of heart when it comes to running costs, as the brawny 6.0 liter V12 will certainly eat its fair share of gas and oil, along with the additional parts as compared to its lesser V8 sibling. With less than 50,000 miles on the clock, this S600 Coupe for sale in New Jersey would be great for collectors and those looking to impress at the country club forecourt alike.
On Tuesday of this week, I wrote up a crazy modified Maybach 57S. Beefed up with crazy amounts of horsepower, it was decidedly not understated even though it was dressed all in black. Around the same time, Andrew wrote up a 750Li, talking about how people never give them a second look, but they offer extreme luxury in a very understated package for a modest price. In this vein, I’d like to offer for your consideration this 2007 Mercedes-Benz S600; underneath, it’s the same W221 chassis the Maybach was designed around. That means ridiculous amounts of luxuries and technology at your fingertips. While this model isn’t the nutter AMG S65 model with 600 horsepower (the same drivetain that was in the 57S), it’s still not exactly a wall flower; the M275 was rated at 510 horsepower and 612 lb.ft of torque. If that’s not enough to give you a kick in the seat of the pants, your other ride is probably a F22 Raptor. On top of the Industrial Age power, this particular S600 was ordered with the exclusive “Designo” package in Grapite; it added some beautiful Nappa leather and matte wood accents that really dress up the interior. Outside, while the W221 isn’t the most attractive S-Class produced, I think pulls off the rare feat of looking much better than the W220 it replaced and also better than the newer refreshed W221 and W222 that followed it. And outside, what’s special isn’t that it’s a crazy, slightly overdone AMG adorned model, but a standard S600 – refined, understated, and dare I say attractive:
One of the things I love most about these 10K posts is the breadth of selections and ideas that I dream up to try to pull together. Today’s thought was about practical performance – what’s the most your can buy for $10,000? As a result, we have quite a diverse selection to make it through today, ranging from a 2.0 TDi gas sipper through a 5.5 liter, twin-turbocharged V12 torque monster. In their respective ways, each is a great car (at least, in premise) and probably defines its category. What’s your favorite of this group?
When production of the Mercedes-Benz 600 finally ended in 1981, there was a void for an über Mercedes sedan that wouldn’t be filled until the reintroduction of the Maybach brand in 2002. The introduction of the W140 S-class ten years earlier, however, went a long way towards giving buyers at the high end something special. Enter the 600SEL, which would be renamed the S600 in 1994, with its 6.0 liter V12 engine. If you wanted to distinguish your top of the line S-class even further, you could opt for the four-place seating package, consisting of fully adjustable rear seats, lumbar support and rear sunshade control. A burlwood center console rounded off the look. This four-seater S600 for sale in New Jersey has traveled just under 64,000 miles and is the perfect tool to go play CEO.
It’s pretty amazing when generations of cars come together in value; right now, there are 4 generations of Mercedes-Benz S-class models that all seem to hit market for around the same amount. From the beginnings of the “Sonder” Class Mercedes with the W116 through the W220 cars that are only just over a generation old, there’s a tremendous amount of luxury available in these super sedans and coupes. So what would be your choice? We’ll go by age this time, starting with the W116:
Mercedes coupes have always been an object of desire for me. Sure, they lack a little of the carefree fun factor of their open roofed counterparts, but a lot of the classics coupes have blended the conservative style of the sedans with a bit of verve you would expect with a personal luxury vehicle. A two-door vehicle of this size may seem indulgent, but for me, they are oh so right. One of our favorites here at GCFSB is the C126, more commonly known as the 380SEC and later 560SEC on these shores. For a decade, this car carried the large coupe torch for Mercedes-Benz fairly unchanged and was one of those cars of the 1980s people would instantly associate with the wealthy.
First, let’s take a look at this low mileage 560SEC for sale in New York.
This car is sure to set off some comment chatter. There’s been a lot of talk about what it takes to maintain an upper end German luxury car and whether it is worth it in the end. With the W126 S class rising in popularity amongst collectors, the W140 S class has now entered the gray area of not quite collectable but too old to be on most used car buyers’ radar. This example of the flagship S600 has the rare four seat option and has covered a mere 10,000 miles.
1998 Mercedes-Benz S600 V12
Another gorgeous Mercedes with just 10,000 miles – everything is in brand new condition
and this too was stored in a heated storage facility for many years. The color combination
is a stunning “champagne beige” color both inside and out. The car has every option available.
Even the carpet looks as though no one has ever stepped foot in the car. You can own this gorgeous car for a fraction of the cost to buy one new.
Offered at $45,000
The asking price of $45,000 is way off the map from anything I’ve seen in terms of W140 values, but this could quite possibly be the lowest mileage S600 available, as only a few hundred were made for the 1998 model year. While $45,000 is a mere fraction of the original $132,000 list price, I could not see this car pulling more than $25,000. The old rule of Mercedes sedans (with exception of some AMG models) not pulling as much on resale as coupes and convertibles is in effect here.
One must keep in mind the complexity of the W140 versus its predecessor, the W126. From the oil and fuel consumption to complex features such as a rear view mirror that is electronically actuated, this is neither an easy or cheap car in terms of upkeep.