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1992 300TE 4MATIC
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9 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone.
a friend of mine has a 300TE wagon with a inline 6 4matic that he is going to give to me, im not sure of the year but i know its a W124 the body and interior are perfect. i have only sat in this car and i have already fallen in love, i had a 82 300D wagon two years ago and was always impressed with the overall build quality and style of these cars. my question to all of you is that the 300TE has transmission problems. he says that the trans shifts fine for about an hour of driving then starts to slip. he asked a shop how much to rebuild it and they told him $4000 (haha) im not a stranger to working on my own cars and i have no problem buying a used trans and swapping it out. but i am wondering if its something easier to fix then a trans swap which would be almost anything haha. any ideas? i really want to drive this car for many years, i dont plan on getting rid of this one. any other things i should check on the car? any info would be greatly appreciated. :D
 

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2005 E320 CDI, 1992 300TE, 1999 Porsche 911 Cabriolet
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368 Posts
These cars have a common problem with the shift modulator which can allow the transmission to flare (like a slipping clutch) on shifting. Alternately, they can shift pretty hard.

However, what you are talking about sounds more like slipping bands in the transmission. I paid $2500 for a rebuild on mine about 170,000 miles ago. If mine started doing what you are talking about, I think I might first try to adjust the bands, just in case there was more life inside (more friction material on the bands).

The TE also has a slightly different transmission than the regular 300 in that it starts in first gear rather than second. I don't know whether the rear end is lower to compensate because mine is a slug pulling away from a stop light. The bottom line is that a regular 300 transmission might not be a good source for a used tranny.

Since yours is a 4-Matic, there are a boat load of other issues to deal with as well. I would definately shop around before I paid $4000 for a rebuild if and when I needed one.

Good Luck,
Peter
 

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Premium Member
About a dozen 1988, 1989, 1990, and 1991 sedans, wagons, 4Matics and 1 coupe
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5,466 Posts
The TE transmission starts in 1st gear? Not on my 88s. And TEs (the early years) had 3.27:1 gears vs the 3.07:1 found in 300E sedans. I find the TEs to be snappier off the line and more responsive when already in motion. If later years TEs start in 1st gear I've never heard anyone mention it on this board.

To the OP it does sound like a transmission overhaul is in your future. YOu can drop the pan and see what's in there and what the filter looks like. That will give you a better idea of where you stand.

As for swapping in a trans on a 4Matic -- well good luck with that. Everything related to or near the transmission on a 4Matic is just plain awful. Really awful.
 

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Fuck you
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116 Posts
The TE also has a slightly different transmission than the regular 300 in that it starts in first gear rather than second. I don't know whether the rear end is lower to compensate because mine is a slug pulling away from a stop light. The bottom line is that a regular 300 transmission might not be a good source for a used tranny.
My '88 300TE started in second.
 

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1992 300TE 4MATIC
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9 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
thanks for all the response. ill be getting the car monday, so ill have more info then. how much work is it to tighten the bands?
 

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W124
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5,179 Posts
If it shifts fine for the first hour I would suspect a filter clog. Its an easy step that just might solve the problem
 

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2005 E320 4MATIC, 1994 E320, 2000 Ducati M750
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135 Posts
These transmissions are pretty simple really and you can always rebuild it yourself without too many problems. The parts aren't even $200, and the worst part is removing it from the car, which isn't too hard to do if you have any mechanical ability at all. There are great resources online that cover the whole precedure, check out w124zone, which has not only a good writeup but also copies of the factory service manual
 

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80 280SL, 85 300SD, 87 300TD, 90 300TE 4Matic, 90 300D 2.5 Turbo, 92 300D 2.5 Turbo, 92 300TE 4Mat
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1,469 Posts
The 4matic wagons actually have a 3.29:1 ratio. It is about the only recent MB with the set up. Replacing a speedo cluster is particularly difficult because of it.

Sometimes the transmission fix is a easy as replacing the fluid with OEM spec.

Mine starts in 2nd by the way.
 

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1992 300TE 4MATIC
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25 Posts
My 1992 300TE 4Matic always starts in first, always has since I got it three years ago. I know that the 4Matic wagons are geared lower (I'd assume the same for the 4Matic sedans, though I'm not 100% sure).
 

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1992 300TE 4MATIC
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9 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
ok so just drove the car and the guy was wrong about the problem. its not slipping. the transmission shifts perfectly until it warms up then it refuses to shift to third, it shifts from first to second then just holds second and wont shift. any ideas?
 

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Mercedes 300te
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1,970 Posts
As i read it was one of the spring kits you need to replace... Let the experts who have done the fix to chime in..
 

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W124 Moderator
86 190E 2.3L 16V, 2 95 320TE's, 02 S500
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12,760 Posts
where is a good place to get that spring kit?
Before you start pulling apart a complicated (4matic) transmission to replace parts that may or may not be bad, I suggest doing the simple inexpensive things first.

Most likely, your car starts off in 2nd. gear so from your post, it's not shifing into D (4th). Purchase a new filter and pan gasket. Drain all the fluid, including the torque converter and refill. Using the search function of this forum, look for "bowden cable adjustment". Read, read, read. Also, carefully go over all the vacuum lines and their connectors.

Good Luck with the "gift"

Jayare
 

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1992 300TE 4MATIC
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Discussion Starter #16
i was planning on doing the easy stuff first (duh) but i would still like to know where to get one in case i need to :)
 
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