I'm more of a passive user on this website, and I utilize all of the great information that there is to offer on here.
For starters, I'm 17 years old (yea yea I know) and live in MA. My father purchased his first Mercedes-Benz right around my birth, either when I was very young, or maybe not even born yet. It was a W126 420SEL, champagne with the timeless burgundy interior. I love recalling my first memory, of the car, pulling on the gear shifter (pre-brake pedal release) and putting the car in neutral. The car started to roll down the hill of the Friendly's parking lot, with the 3 year old me rolling down with it. Dad ran from the ice cream window, to jump into the car and stop it.
After this, he wanted to buy another used Mercedes, a W140 I think. Upon the decision to sell the W126, my mother suggested that he buy a new car instead of used. He went with a 1999 E300 DT, and what a great choice. I remember sitting in the driveway with momma waiting until he pulled in with the car he just drove an hour and a half from the Providence dealership with. We loved the car, and together we took so many trips. He would pick me up early in school and everyone would think i was cool, with the license plate "DADDIO" (our real last name) on either end. The black was supreme looking, and it felt like the last real Daimler-Benz made car that there was. Had the modern, and the classic. The elegance, and the simplicity.
A few years later, he found a 250SL needing a restoration, in a mechanic's back yard. He made an offer, and took the car home. Over the course of roughly half a year, the car was restored back to a respectable Benz. The paint was impeccable, like glass. Chrome parts were replaced if necessary, from Miller's Mercedes one of the Carolinas, leaving some original pieces for originality. I love the car, and mom made me wear a helmet when I drove in it with dad...like that would help. I remember going to the body shop every week or two, seeing the progress, and helping the workers by handing tools, and the like. I loved Mercedes-Benz from then on.
As I began grade school, and grew up a little, my parents began having some problems. Long story short, they separated and divorced, and I lost the comfortable family middle class living style that I knew nothing other than. The classic married middle class business man that my dad once was began to depreciate down to where we are now. He worked for his company for a few more years, than switched to a new stock brokering company. He left there to work at Citizen's Bank, and after a couple of years, moved to work with a small stock business that his college friend and his father started. When the recession got, they downsized and sad lost his job, severing their friendship, and beginning day's unemployment. Although it sounds weird for me to say, my dad had always lived pretty comfortably his whole adult life. He always had a decent car, from a Scirocco, to a e28 533is, to an e36 328i, to the Benzes. He saw his fellow college pals all continue to be very successful to this day, and he seems to be the only one that has struggled. He had to leave all his clients behind when'd mother wanted us to move (1997) to MA to be close to her parents.
Now unemployed for over two years, he is about to lose his home, an ordinary cape that he built about 5 years ago when he was still loving comfortably. He's living on credit cards, and bottom line, the SL has to go. He's always said how it has to be sold, last summer he brought it to my mother's and my house (where he used to live) for us to keep in the driveway on route 123, for thousands of people to see. This past summer, same thing: dropped it off in June, and picked it up in September. Obviously, it didn't sell, mostly because I never put the thing out. I never wanted to get rid of it. I drove it illegally two summers ago before I had my license, and this summer, breaking no legal rules, just my dad's trust, should he have found out about it. I would get in the car, put my Mercedes-Benz sweatshirt on, and find the spirited back roads of my suburban town, where I would feel like I was in Germany, at the peak of the Company's success and reputation. I got my first cad, a W126 420SEL, black on black, this past July. Yea I'm a teenager, but I've done everything it's needed since my ownership myself. Whether it was the mono valve, a sliding jaw, a repaired antenna, trunk light seals, idle actuator, and soon to be brake pads and some front end suspension work, I enjoy the hell out of doing it. When I first got the car, and the problems were brought to light, I had already known the solution, from years of research since middle school of various MB models, hoping to own one when I got my license. I did, and I'm tied to the company for life. Every time I talk about cars my dad tells me stop because he doesn't want to hear it, but I know it's really because he isn't the man he used to be, and he says constantly that he can't believe at one point in his life could he afford a Mercedes-Benz. Now he's baffled at the thought of a new Ford Taurus. It took me 8 months after I got my license to find the car I wanted to pull the trigger on, and went for it. I'm so happy u ended up with a pre-merger car, not to mention of of the most appreciated models (W126 chassis as a whole). At the expense of my early high school grades, I researched all I could about the most in depth, pointless things there was to know about many different MB cars, from W116's to W210, and could rattle off all of the common problems for most all cars between them. I would correct car dealers when they said that the locks were electronic, insisting that they were based on a system of vacuums.
There's too much about the company that's vested in me, so I'm going to try to stop here. Bottom line is that the car is for sale, and I have to cope with hopefully parting with the car, so my dad can live a few more months in his house before he becomes what he tells me (and he tells me never to tell my sister) is next; that he'll be homeless.
For those who do not know all that much about the model:
It's one of approximately roughly 5,000
This one's a 4-speed
Was repainted original color
Has original seats, with new interior carpeting
Original soft top, with hard top that was repainted along with the car.
Almost 168,000 miles.
Nairobi or Nairodi (can't remember the name) three point burl wooden steering wheel, seen occasionally in W113 cars.
Does have a small transmission fluid leak that I was told could be due to an ill-fitted hose clamp.
The transmission suddenly became very loose shifting, in what our trustworthy mechanic told us was just a simple transmission bearing.
Suffers small scale from vapor lock, when a semi warm engine has just a little trouble starting, a rough brining idle, that promptly evens out after a few quick revs.
Clutch is tight
Please post asking all the questions that I inevitably left out. More picture to flow when I get on my computer.
Also, I'm sorry for telling the questionably unnecessary story to you all, but I just want any potential future owners of this car the history and sentimental value which it is supported by.
For those of you who read this promptly, I'll have pictures on within a few hours, once I get to my computer.
Thank you all,
Joseph N. Daddio III
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