I got a tip of a W115 up in Portland Maine supposedly in good running condition. Was told the oil pan leaked and needed a new window switch, a little TLC and that's that. Those were the only pictures the seller posted and I thought why not? The car was Ruby Red almost maroon and I was determined to make it mine.
After trying to come in contact with the guy for a week he finally replied and to my responce the only time I could make it (Friday morning) was perfect for him. Everything seemed to be working out perfectly. The Mercedes gods alligned to make this happen. Found a garage that would inspect it, I was stoked. Left the house a little before 7am to make it in time. Upon arrival driving over the train tracks the Mercedes started to appear in all it's Red Glory. This was my first time seeing a W115 in person and it sure looked amazing. The interior didn't look half bad either. The guy explained that he can't own the car anymore, that he doesn't have time to work on it.
I thought I really found it. Then I noticed something wrong. The seat was stuck, wouldn't adjust. I looked underneath the rugs and what I saw hit me like an on coming train. RUST! Man it was unbelievable how rusty it was. Almost the entire floor was rotted out. Under the rugs were soaked with all the water trapped underneath. Something that the seller "forget" to tell me on my 3 hour drive up there was both front windows were left open for 3 years as the car sat outside in New England weather. How sad someone would let this happen to such a beautiful car. A serious question I have is why the owner continued to leave the soaked rugs in there rotting out the car? I then opened the trunk to see if moisture was getting trapped inside seeing it was kept outside for 3 years. Sure enough trunk, completely rotted out. The engine was still growling I'll give it that. The owner quickly informed me how "easy" it was for a mechanic or even yourself to weld in new floor panels.
Noticed the seats were coming apart too
At this point I knew already I wasn't going to buy the car. I was pleasantly surprised when the seller told me he had to leave for 25 minutes to run a few errands and left me with the car to test drive. Of coarse the car wasn't registered but who cares, it's Maine! This was my first time driving an older car but it's exactly how I pictured it. No ABS Brakes, now this was a car! Braking wasn't sharp, nice and smooth. Steering was not too sensitive and handled quite well at high speeds. Reached up to 60mph and tested the brakes. Car began to glide to the left and I knew that was a tell tale sign the brakes were starting to go. The noise from the engine didn't bother me at all. Love noisy cars in the sort of way motor heads like a loud bike. You were proud to be driving it, proud that something this old and beat up could still be driving down the road. Testing all the electronics lights worked, wipers did not, didn't even want to try the AC and have whatever mold was in there blow in my face, and radio was pulled out.
Overall I enjoyed my first experience. I may have not come home with a car but I really got a feel for what these Mercedes are all about. I can definitely see myself owning one. The quest to find my W115 continues!