Date registered: Aug 2002
Vehicle: 350SLC, 500SLC, 300TE, 190E2.3 Sportline
Location: Sydney, Australia
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RE: m103 vs m104
M103 for smoothness, quietness, easy "drivability", easier maintenance.
M104 for potent upper rev range and a magic sound when working hard (late HFM version).
I regularly drive both my '90 300TE (M103) and my father's '93 E320 coupe (M104). Whilst the E320 offers good performance (especially with 5-speed auto) and a lovely sound when working hard, it is intrusively noisy for daily driving. Its power delivery is not as progressive and it is possible to feel the points where the camshaft timing and inlet manifold tuning changes. The 300TE, whilst not as potent, offers smooth and progressive power delivery and is almost silent.
107.023: 350SLC, 3-speed auto, icon gold, parchment MBtex, (sold 2012 after 29 years ownership).
107.026: 500SLC, 4-speed auto, thistle green, green velour.
124.090: 300TE, 4-speed auto, arctic white, cream-beige MBtex.
201.028: 190E 2.3 Sportline, 5-speed manual, arctic white, blue leather.
201.028: 190E 2.3, 4-speed auto, blue-black, grey MBtex.
201.034: 190E 2.3-16, 5-speed manual, blue-black, black leather.