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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-14-2007, 05:13 PM Thread Starter
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Vehicle: 1984 500 SEC AMG
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Unhappy Real AMG?

How do I know if I have a real AMG? Traded for a 1984 500 SEC, it has AMG in the steering wheel, in the wheels,on the air filter top, but not on the title. The emblems are missing from the rear deck lid. This is my first Benz, don't know much about them other than what I have seen on the internet.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-14-2007, 05:25 PM
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Check that it was manufactured in Affalterbach, Germany.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-15-2007, 08:11 AM
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Nah, it would be manufactured same as any other Mercedes.

If it then went to Affalterbach for custom modifications, that is good.

Modifications added elsewhere mean not authentic.

Very few AMG left Affalterbach without engine modifications, which was the point. The point was NOT cosmetic addons.

Kent Christensen
'07 GL320CDI
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-15-2007, 09:53 AM
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Is there an AMG engine under the hood? If not, it's not an AMG, if there is, there you go.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-15-2007, 10:12 AM
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pictures would help. engine modifications might not be as obvious. some of the engines were still normal looking SOHC motors with larger displacement and/or cams etc.

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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-15-2007, 10:54 AM
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1984 was a booming year for the gray market, and quite a few AMG modified SECs from that year made it into the USA.

AMG was an aftermarket tuner, so its name would NEVER show up on the US title from any state.

If it was modified at the German AMG factory in Affalterbach, a good sign it was an AMG car would be the factory metal AMG build plate you might find on the driver door jamb or on the front radiator support. Though not EVERY one had them.

Many were modified by authorized American AMG tuning shops AFTER they got here from Germany. AMG West in Richmond Calif. Richmond Mercedes is the last one standing, but at one time there were many, AMG of Missouri, Beverly Hills Motoring Accessories, AMG in Westmont Illinois, and others.

Each AMG car was modified "a la carte" either engine, suspension, transmission, interior, wheel, ground effects, or other accessories, as the customer ordered, so few were ever alike.

The basic rule was that any three modifications entitled you to the AMG trunk script, butit was not strictly followed. If what you say your car had on it was really AMG original mods, it sounds like it qualifies as an AMG car.

Undeniable AMG providence is supplied by the actual paperwork from the AMG factory or the Us tuning shop, but since the latter from 1984, all but one are gone, and the AMG factory has not kept records from those years, the chances of tracing an AMG pedigree on cars that old is slim to none, at this point.

You can call your car an AMG. Go ahead and buy an AMG trunk script, but get the period correct one, that looks like AMG and not the new ones, that look like ///AMG. They are on ebay, and some are Asian knockoffs, but the real ones would be in a shrink wrapped package from the German factory with the Affalterbach name and address on the back of the cardboard package they are in. They typically go from $130- $150.

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-15-2007, 11:59 AM
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-15-2007, 12:31 PM
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I concur with the above post regarding pre-merger AMG cars . . . virtually no records were maintained to verify builds, particularly the cars that were modified at authorized AMG sites worldwide.

As such, just because a car didn't go to Affalterbach, does not mean it's not authentic. Authorized shops in the US, Canada, Europe, Japan, and the Middle East did conversions, including the engine swaps, suspension and transmission modifications and the like.

An AMG engine tuned engine from this period should have the AMG serial number stamp on block, either near or at the same place as the original MB serial number. However, if the tuning was merely the installation of different cams, valve springs, etc by a dealer/authorized shop, then it may not bear the AMG serial number.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-15-2007, 05:54 PM
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If the car was imported from AMG Germany (most likely the case for a "real" AMG in 1985), there'll be Classic Motors or an AMG distributor name listed on the door jamb sticker. Running the car through the VIN decoder will not tell you if it's an AMG, btw. If it doesn't have that door jamb sticker, then it probably was a 1985 500SEC that someone put some AMG bits on it.

The most important thing to be AMG'd is the engine - does it have an AMG plate on it?
Does it have a circa-1985 body kit?

Only three ways to know if the car was a "real" AMG or if it was a standard 500SEC and the AMG bits were added:

1) You have the original paperwork that shows the AMG heritage.
2) You have the door jamb sticker.
3) You have an engine plate that says "AMG".

If you have none of those, odds are you have a standard 500SEC with AMG bits added. By whom? Who knows. Post some pics.

- Brian

1989 500SEL ECE
1966 Mercedes 250SE Cabriolet
1958 BMW Isetta 600
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-19-2007, 07:32 PM
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I have a similar 500SEC here right now which everyone assumed was just another " body kit car" .
It has been running really rough,so the owner has asked me to wasn't until i removed the cam covers and spotted few things different( such as an early head casting date,AMG marked cams,mechanical cam pivots etc etc ) that it was revealed to be the real deal.
It only takes a few minutes to pull the covers off and ,with the aid of a flashlight and small mirror, check the end of the cams for markings.If it is an AMG modified engine,they will be marked"AMG 5,0-1" or similar.
Apart from the spoilers etc and the AMG badge ( Painted brass) there is NO indication that this was ever a real AMG conversion.No body or engine plates anywhere on the car.
All paper work for the car has been lost over the 23 years so there is no indication to be found there either. From a first glance the engine looks just like any other M117-963 ;

but as can be seen here from a AMG brochure,they all looked like that.
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