new member, new to the world of benz. 77 450SEL 6.9L - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 12:46 PM Thread Starter
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new member, new to the world of benz. 77 450SEL 6.9L

Hi guys,
I am mike and live in Little Rock Arkansas (native of New Orleans but here for 9 years now).

I just found a 77 450sel with the 6.9L engine literally sitting in a guys yard. Now the adventure begins, I was hoping for some guidance on locating parts, good shop manuals, etc.. I have the haynes manual, but its not very detailed. i know its total cosmetic, but both front headlight lenses are smashed. so I was wandering around the web and it seems rather hard to find these, or at least for someone who does not know where to look. I will also need engine parts, upholstery, suspension, etc..

Thanks in advance for any help.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 02:14 PM
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Mike welcome to Benzworld, lots of good people here.

Got to say, you've taken a breath taking leap of faith to make this your first Benz.
These are awesome cars, the top of the line of all Mercedes back in 1977, were over $50,000 new back in the day, that a lot. It's seen in the movie "Ronin"

The had the dry sump engine, (I think 12 quarts of oil for them) and a VERY problematice and extremely expensive air suspension on them, if the car is a bad one you'd do well to invest in underwater financial scuba gear.

A great place to ask specific questions for this car is below on the W116 section.
Also, in the technical help section of MercedesShop - Mercedes Benz Parts and Technical Information

Curtis (username: " Diametricalbenz " has a couple of these cars and is a real expert on them. Also, Chris Munday in Australia is another great guy, who has just restored a gorgeous one to show winning condition. Use the search function on those to sites to see what he has wrought, and the photos. It took close to two years to make that one perfect.

As to the headlights, are they "Euor" headlights (clear rectangular glass piece)
or US version (Four quad sealed beams)? Look on the internet and see which you'd rather have. The Euro lights are actually better as to their beam pattern and light output, and offer better performance.

Junkyards and ebay could yield them, but there are sites on line that sell them, Capitol West in Sacramento,, etc. but the best place to start would be to search the threads on benzworld and mercedesshop or place your own thread asking, the people here and at MS are true enthusiasts, and I'm sure Diametricalbenz or someone else can help you along.

Do you have pictures of your car? It is a European model (Possible velour interior, oblong headlights, slender bumpers, plastic dark wind deflector on roof) or US style (Railroad tie bumpers, round quad headlights, leaqqther interior are clues)

There isn't a significant difference in hp and emissions equipment between the two cars, except the US car will have a catalytic converter on it.

Be sure the car has no rust especially at the jack points and on the rockers, these W116 cars were prone to rust, check the airconditioner also, another point to watch on these.

It's obviously not a turnkey driver, so undertake carefully what you need to get her back on the road.
Be waqrned, if the caqr is a basket case it will cost a LOT of $$$ to bring it back.

It'll turn out to be a stunning performer when it is sorted. Good Luck

Last edited by cascade; 01-24-2007 at 02:17 PM.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 02:28 PM Thread Starter
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thanks for the advice.. here is a pic

not great quality, more to come.
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 02:48 PM
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mmmm, very rare in that color. It looks like it is a euro version (by the bumpers) with US style headlights.
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 04:11 PM
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It might be worthwhile to check with mbusa re. tech. literature. The W126 forum has the link in the DIY on top .
Another source might be ' The International M-100 Group

Welcome to the forum and congrats. Nice car.

You can also type your question into the 'search this forum' box on the top right. It will get you all archived post re. your problem.

You might try the Russian MB site. Don't put in a mod. or vin, click on cars and scroll down, until you get to yours. Ê*ò*ëîã ç*ï÷*ñòåé MB

Good luck
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 05:20 PM
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Pic is kinda fuzzy, but they look like Euro headlights to me. We keep new lenses in stock.

"If spending money you don't have is the height of stupidity, borrowing money to give it away is the height of insanity." -- anon
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 07:42 PM
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they are euro headlights from the side they kidna look like us version because of the fog light on the side just before the blinker. i might know somewhere here ingermany you can get some parts. pm me
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 10:06 PM
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Hi Mike, it's a nice score, you have a Ronin-mobile! Jim is right you can spend a lot making this car very nice. Since the car is sitting periodically check on the suspension to see how long it sits until it settles back down. Obviously the longer it stays up the better. The suspension is not that problematic, it's design is simple but the replacement parts are pricey since they are unique to that car alone. The euro motor has more power due to the absence of the smog equipment. 286hp versus 250hp and 405lbft instead of 360lbft when new. They're great drivers when they're tuned up properly yielding a whopping 13mpg on the freeway but be happy if it yields double digit fuel economy and no matter what use the BEST fuel you can find for it. Use premium fuel (not racing or leaded stuff) but definitely not the cheap stuff. It's a big powerful motor and it doesn't deserve anything less.

Once it stops raining inspect the car from top to bottom for rust and make a checklist of everything that doesn't work and we'll go from there.

1977 - W116 - 6.9
1974 - W115 - 240D /8 - 4(M) OM617.910 + Turbo + 300D FW - Completed 7/8/10
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-25-2007, 01:15 PM
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...and BTW it's not AIR suspension ,it's Hydrualic.
If it drops more than 1/2" in a hour the problem lays in the "Central" sphere.Look under the left front fender you will two round ball things.The Top one is the central sphere and it has a wire leading from it.This will be faulty and you can buy them through Ron or other places on the web.
The struts are simple hydro rams with concertina boots on them.if those boots get damaged the road dirt will eat the seals the rams will cause the car to drop so make sure the boots look good and clean.A little bit of oil staining is normal.
The suspension reservoir is on the left with alloy cap.the level should always be between the full and half and should be checked weekly.As these cars get older they will use a bit of hydro oil.John Olsen, sells a high quality suspension fluid cheaper than the proper Merc stuff.
Before you start using the car,Change the fuel filter,it's exactly the same part as any W1083.5,4.5 W116 injected car.So don't be fooled into buying a 6.9 only filter.There is a vast price difference.

When you change the oil you can make life easier for yourself by 1/ putting 500ml of auto trans fluid in the oil tank( right front fender) and let the engine run for while until it's good and hot.(I drive for a couple of hundred miles to let the trans fluid clean the gunk out of mine and after a couple of changes doing this the oil stays cleaner longer)

2/ the tank is drained under the right front fender ,there's a 17mm bolt.

3/ The bottom of the engine has a alloy sump with another 17mm hex(allen) bolt,drain the oil from there.

4/ If your car is a gray market import from Europe it may have the oil cooler fitted on the left of the radiator.On the bottom of the cooler is a drain ,this must be opened and the cooler drained.

5/ replace the filter,do it at every oil change to prevent wear in the tappets ($$$$)

6/ Use cheaper #50 oil and change it often.Don't try and use thinner modern multi-grades etc ,the tappets will drive you crazy and oil pressure at idle will scare you.never ever use Mobil 1,for the same reasons.
When the 6.9 was new the first oil change was 50,000 !! don't try that with an older engine.
7/Replace the copper washers in the drain plugs,if you bought a proper Mercedes filter instead of some cheap generic thing you will get the washers with the filter.

8/ Drain and replace ALL the auto trans fluid.The trans is the same one as used in the earlier 450SLC ( R107) and yes,it's pretty small for a big engine like the 6.9 so look after it.
The torque convertor has a drian so take the time to rotate the convetor and find make sure you get all the old fluid out.The trans should be flushed actauly so talk to a reputable trans expert in your area.
...and get ready for a real driving experience.When new, car testers found these cars ,big as they are ,were as "chuckable" as Mini!.

Last edited by mercmad6.3; 01-25-2007 at 01:17 PM.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-25-2007, 05:27 PM
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I may be able to help you out with the headlights. I have a set of euro lenses and reflectors in pretty decent condition. Drop me a PM.

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