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1984 Production Euro Spec 280CE 4-speed

12131 Views 137 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  MSGGrunt
New to me and just arrived from Texas. September 1984 production 280CE 4-speed, European spec as confirmed by the VIN. 43,193 document miles. I am now the 3rd owner. The story on the car is that the original owner was a Doctor who ordered it and took delivery of the car in Belgium, drove it around Europe while on vacation and then shipped it to Texas. According to the 2nd owner who worked with this doctor he found himself on the wrong side of the law and went to prison for 7 years. The story was told to me that when he was released from prison he drove the car, presumably without checking the oil, and blew the motor. The 2nd owner paid $500.00 for the car, I have a copy of the bill of sale, and purchased a new short block from Adsit, which I have the receipt for, swapped everything over from the blown motor and had it installed in the car.

The Good: The block has only approximately 10,000 miles on it.
The Bad: It is no longer a matching numbers car.

When imported the car was federalized and US spec headlights, taillights and bumpers were installed. And at some point in the vehicles life the front manual window regulators were swapped for power ones.

The car came with its original owner's manuals, complete tool kit, original Pirelli Cinturato spare (I don't think it has ever been out of the car), original first aid kit, and even a mint working Becker Europa radio.

To Do:
  • Swap in Euro headlights (already have a set).
  • Go back to manual front windows (already have the manual regulators and cranks with trim).
  • Swap out US spec bumpers for Euro spec. Low priority right now.
  • The car came from the factory with a rear seatbelt delete option (I found this to be an odd option and even more odd to select it). I am missing and need to source one of the rear panel seat belt blanking covers. Done, I found the second trim piece in a box of spares in the trunk.
  • Replace all the wood trim. I have already ordered a complete set from W123 I am going with burl rather than the original Zebrano as I feel it will look nice with the black/grey interior. 10 to 12 weeks to make.
  • Source a crack free or less crack free dash.
  • Give the paint a good cut, buff and polish.
  • Possibly go back to Euro taillights.
  • Replace shifter bushing.
  • Replace cracked exterior window wiper rubbers.
  • Tune up with new plugs, cap, rotor, injectors with new cups and O-rings, adjust valves and replace all fluids as well as a good cooling system flush.
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Nice car. Even if the numbers don’t match.

Is “return the rocker panels to black” going to be on your list somewhere?

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Ah. Side skirts. Can’t believe I missed that. Those are pretty rare, I believe.
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I have considered switching to burl. I had it in a ‘78 coupe. But the climate control panel always trips me up.

My coupe is an ‘82 with the later automatic climate control. As far as I know, the burl rosewood was only in the earlier cars with the earlier ACC.

That wheel looks mint.

That engine bay looks great. Whether a York would have been original or not, you’re much better off with that Sanden.

Did you manage to get one with no air pump?
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What MSGrunt said. Plus they are noisier. Or have been on my cars.

Still, the York is better than the R4 on the diesels.

Sanden > York > GM R4. IMHO.

That vinyl will be a huge improvement. Looking at the worn covering every time you get behind the wheel wouldn’t be fun.

That looks great!

I like the sound of a straight six when it’s wound up. My Euro M110s were great. So was an N52 I once had in an E90 BMW.

That 280 is sweet. The fuel injection makes a huge improvement, I’m sure. I’m glad to know that option is out there.

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