560SL, SL500 or SLK? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-02-2014, 06:35 PM Thread Starter
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560SL, SL500 or SLK?

I want to buy a used convertible but have not decided on which model to buy, still researching (budget $20K). I have read many posts in this forum and learned quite a bit about these cars. The vintage 560SL with its square back and round headlights is beautiful but I worry that the many parts will need to be replaced soon, being 25-26 years old. I am also interested in the 97,98, 99 and 2000 SL500's. Their design line is smooth and the drive train appear very reliable. Would prefer the 98 over the other years. I've seen most of these selling for around $10-14K or so. The drawback, at least in my mind, is the non-retractable hard top. The newer generation of SL500 has retractable hard top but the ABC problem scares me. Is this problem really serious, affecting most cars? What year(s) should I avoid? The SLK's are very nice but too small to fit one large golf bag and a pull cart in. But it's still an option.
So basically I want a fun car that I do not have to take it to the shop every month. I hope to receive your suggestions as well as information regarding the reliability of these cars, and the one thing I should look out for. Please do not recommend Japanese cars since I currently have Acura RDX, TL, Nissan, Huyndai, MB E320 in our family.
Many thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-11-2014, 06:52 AM
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You probably should also consider 2005 CLKs - very nice cars.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-11-2014, 07:10 AM
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Moving to California 20some years ago - convertible was high on my list, but it never happen.
Several reasons but I hope you made your mind and know what you are going for?
No experience with models above, but aging convertible can be money pit just because of top.
I guess you had SBC on mind asking. Don't be scared. It is high-tech system and it has build-in counter that after some pushes calls for replacement.
High-priced maintenance item, but still nothing comparing to tops and lately much cheaper rebuilds hit the US market. Have the count read on SD at PPI.
Good luck on your search.

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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 11-11-2014, 01:43 PM
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Test drive a slk55 AMG before you make your final decision. We owned a slk230 for a number of years and it was a great vehicle.

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