Date registered: Apr 2009
Vehicle: 1986 300se 5-speed(manual)
Location: Vancouver, Washington U.S.A.
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w126 300se 5-speed
I see this thread is about a year old, but here's my addition.
I recently purchased a euro version 1986 300se with 5-speed tranny.
The car only had 104k miles, documented by all maintenance records.
Manual seats, no cruise control, manual hvac, and seems to have lots of power (for an in-line 6).
Anyway, shifting was a little 'clunky' at first, but I've got it down now.
I love it and probably get better milage than an auto. Also, there's nothing like a quick downshift and acceleration to pass someone. The engine pulls really strong, even in 5th, and I'm glad I held out for a 'stick'.
I happened upon this 300se by luck and probably would have ended up with a 190e stick-shift, if I hadn't found this one. Now I just hope I don't hurt the tranny as I expect that will be a challenge to find/repair/replace.
It's now my daily driver, although it is such low milage and great shape that I almost feel guilty driving it so much. IMHO, it's a much classier car than some of my co-workers whom spent more than 10 times as much on new cars.