Thinking about purchasing a w108 or w114 - Page 2 - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-15-2012, 02:27 PM
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Date registered: Jul 2012
Vehicle: 1969 Mercedes-Benz W108 280SE
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From experience, the more maintenace done, the better. The W108 is very very very prone to rust. Since you're in Miami I would advise you to keep her as dry as possible. I never drive in the rain with her, thats my only criticism. I don't know if the same goes for the W114/115 series but seeing as they were built in the same era I would say the same goes for the strich acht. Seeing as the 220D you uploaded has a new paint job be cautious as this may be an indication of previous rust repairs. I dont have a problem with the new paint, I'm just cautious about the workmanship. I own a 280SE I6, its a mechanical fuel injection. The car is currently a non runner because of the mechanical fuel injector. Parts are available but a bit expensive. Well maybe I just don't know where to search. The W108 requires a lot of maintenance but if thats your thing to do it yourself then awesome! Its usually the small little things so its quite easy and cheap to do. The maintenace and work on the car is fairly straight forward, but be advised you'll need a service book before attempting working on the engine. They are however easy to come by, Don't even bother searching for a 240D because as you said, power is not a problem. The 280SE 4.5 is a bit of a gas guzler, heavy on fuel. The best engine in my opinion is the 280SE 3.5 V8. The 6.3 is ridiculously expensive to maintain and I'm not fond of the air suspension. O and one other thing, don't settle for second best, keep on looking for what you want rather than settling for second best.
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-15-2012, 02:30 PM
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The 220D looks awesome. Inspect the trunk and run your hand over the body, it must be even without any dips and sinkages in the paint. Imagine what it would look and feel like when painting over rust.
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-15-2012, 02:41 PM
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Maybe some other memebers can comment on the availabilty of parts between the 220D and the 240D. If the 240D is an upgrade of the 220D because of the discontinuation of the 220D I can understand why, but otherwise not. Any other memebers willing to comment? Sorry I'm not of much use in this department.
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-15-2012, 04:29 PM
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Parts on our cars are not hard to find. The older the car (50's or beyond), the harder they are to find. Parts for the 108s are common. All the cars on your wish list are good, solid cars, all are prone to rust and all are prone to their own mechanical oddities. Parts on many of these cars are interchangeable - the blower motor in my car fits Mustangs as well. The AC compressor is common to Chevies, and so forth.

I wouldn't touch a diesel, but this is because they have absolutely no get up and I hate the way they sound. They'll get you the best MPG though, and are reliable. Their engines are common and not hard to fix. I have a 108 and absolutely love the thing, and have owned a 114 (with a Solex). If you buy that one, the Solex either works well or doesn't. Like any complex carb, it takes a bit to tune them, but after a drive, you'll know whether the carb is in good running condition or not.
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-16-2012, 08:52 AM
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I'm not sure you could select three more DIFFERENT cars to compare. You say you want a nice cruiser. The 115 diesel looks really nice in the picture. Do you care about A/C? Do you drive over 50 mph? If the answer to both is "no" then that's a great choice. It wouldn't work for me. As for the 280 C, I have a 250 C and I think that the 114 coupe is a great car. It's also a gas pig. Do you care? If not, it's a better cruiser than the other choices. As for the 108, bigger and faster and even more thursty. It would be good for driving circles around the 115 diesel.

If you are looking for a "cruiser" then it will help if you tell us what exactly that means to you. They are all good cruisers depending on your definition of the word.

On a related note, I have a 123 turbodiesel wagon, a 71 114 coupe, and a 67/68 108 2.8L gas. The 114 coupe is the nicest to drive.

Currently: 1967 250 SL, 1963 220Sb, 1965 300SE Lang, 1971 280SE parts car, 1972 Alfa GTV, 1965 Alfa Duetto, 1993 BMW R100R
Past: 1971 250 C, 1985 300 TD, 1967 250 S, 1968 280 S,1981 300 D, 1982 280CE, 3 Facel Vegas, Borgward Isabella Coupe, Alfa 2600 Sprint, Volvo P1900 (yes), numerous less interesting Volvos, ...
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post #16 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-16-2012, 09:36 AM Thread Starter
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I'm not sure you could select three more DIFFERENT cars to compare. You say you want a nice cruiser. The 115 diesel looks really nice in the picture. Do you care about A/C? Do you drive over 50 mph? If the answer to both is "no" then that's a great choice. It wouldn't work for me. As for the 280 C, I have a 250 C and I think that the 114 coupe is a great car. It's also a gas pig. Do you care? If not, it's a better cruiser than the other choices. As for the 108, bigger and faster and even more thursty. It would be good for driving circles around the 115 diesel.

If you are looking for a "cruiser" then it will help if you tell us what exactly that means to you. They are all good cruisers depending on your definition of the word.

On a related note, I have a 123 turbodiesel wagon, a 71 114 coupe, and a 67/68 108 2.8L gas. The 114 coupe is the nicest to drive.
Although A/C is a big issue especially in the South Florida heat, i dont care that much about it because it wont be my daily driver. Im young, heat doesnt phase me . However, i could always get the A/C fixed, it needs a compressor. The slowness of the 220d doesnt bother me either again as it wont be my dialy driver and wouldnt ever see the highway except for the 5 hour drive home from where it is located.

As for the 280c, Its nice but i am not a huge fan of the coupe body, i think the rear cabin pillars looks like an old american car (IMO) It is nice though, one owner, all service records. The owner said its in perfect shape except sometimes while cruising, the car will sometimes randomy hesitate and sort of misfire. I just dont want to run into a Solex or cam nightmare. I've got it down to $4,900.

As for my refererance of a "cruiser", I have a daily driver. Just a car to have fun in, cruise around, and hopefully keep all my life as my toy. Drive it more or less 2-3 times a week.

Sebastian Ducaud
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post #17 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-16-2012, 10:05 AM
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If you want a cruiser/toy, then go for the 108. Simple to work on, lots of space in the engine bay, and parts are still plentiful. Lots of power too.
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post #18 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-16-2012, 10:19 AM
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thought the 114 is a gas guzzler, you cant find a better driving experience. having the pillerless windows open on the highway on a beautiful summer day is like a dream.
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post #19 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-16-2012, 10:40 AM Thread Starter
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If you want a cruiser/toy, then go for the 108. Simple to work on, lots of space in the engine bay, and parts are still plentiful. Lots of power too.
Thanks for te input, i really do like the w108 and cant wait to see it in person. However, the only thing that pushes me away from the W108 is costs and this guys comment on another forum:

"The 108 is a great car to drive. There are several areas to be aware of, though.

If the rear end needs service it will not be cheap. These are very durable, but they are almost impossible to rebuild unless you have a lot of special tools. There are also a number of grease fittings on the rear end that are easy to overlook.

One big problem is the Fuel Injection system. There might be a way to replace the entire system, but if anything breaks then none of it is cheap. The distributor has what are called 'trigger points' (a sort of magnetic pickup coil) that cost several hundred dollars to replace. Fuel pumps are also eye-poping in price.

The A/C system on this is also tough to work on. I had a 6.3 which had the A/C fan mounted in the passengers footwell so it was easy to get to, but the heater fan is installed in such a way that you will swear the car was built around it. If the fan is squeaking then they can be replaced, but it might take you two days to do so."

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