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Discussion Starter #1
I've begun my search for a 95 E320 or E420. I really like the styling so I've decided to buy one if I can find a good one, though my lease ends Jan 09, I think I should jump on one now if I can find the right one. This will be my first used car, so I have some concern. I definetely plan on getting the car inspected by a dealer or a benz specialist but that doesn't always indicate future issues. That's where the questions come in, I've read a number of threads here with the similar question, but haven't really found the answers.

Some things I'd like to ask the experienced owners;

1. Which of the two would be cheaper to maintain?
2. I've seen a number with around 160km and then 230km, should I not bother looking at ones with the high km's? Or are those better because they are cheaper and have probably had work done on them.
3. What are some maintenance costs on these vehicles?
4. If anybody is in the Toronto area, are there any dealers I should watch out for?

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated as I hope I'll be more comfortable with a purchase. Thanks in advance.
 

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I think maintenance cost is about the same, by the time you amortize the 320 head gasket. Both fine cars - can't really go wrong if you find a good one and take care of it. You should drive them both, somewhat different driving experience, and you may prefer one or the other.
 

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As the happy owner of a 1995 E420, I say go for the V8. You will never regret it. You won't be beating this as a daily driver, so the gas mileage won't matter as much. But the power will...

bt
 

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OK, as to your questions:
1) this will vary according to the individual auto that comes your way. If one needs A/C evaporator repair, and the other does not, that takes out a lot of other fixes/maintenance.
2) always favor lower mileage, absent mitigating factors (flood, wreck, salvage e.g.)
3) what in your wallet? $200 for distributor caps and rotors for the V8... did you want a Mercedes or just a transportation appliance?
4) Atlanta area, maybe I have an opinion.

As ever, my opinions are worth what you paid for them.

bt
 

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Don't purchase one from rustville, what ever you do. You may have to come into the US to get a really good example with no rust. Get one with the lowest mileage/kilometers you can find. With each successive mile or kilometer the car is getting one step closer to the end of its life. If you want something to drive for a long time, then get the best one you can possibly afford. CA will have the highest number of excellent rust free examples and is worth looking at.
 

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Getting a dry southern/western U.S. car is a great idea but it really isn't practical to import a U.S. car into Canada until it is 15 years old based on the date of manufacture. But that's not too far off for getting a 94, which is virtually the same as a 95. For example my 94 E420 was made on July 1, 1993, so it's importable into Canada in about 4 months.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
As the happy owner of a 1995 E420, I say go for the V8. You will never regret it. You won't be beating this as a daily driver, so the gas mileage won't matter as much. But the power will...

bt
It'll end up being my daily driver this time next year.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Don't purchase one from rustville, what ever you do. You may have to come into the US to get a really good example with no rust. Get one with the lowest mileage/kilometers you can find. With each successive mile or kilometer the car is getting one step closer to the end of its life. If you want something to drive for a long time, then get the best one you can possibly afford. CA will have the highest number of excellent rust free examples and is worth looking at.
I definetely hear you on that one, I've actually looked online at CA vehicles, many to choose from. Unfortunately upon looking at import regulations, CDN goverment says to refer to Mercedes-Benz and when I did, I found that in that model year the E320, 420 are not qualified to be imported into Canada. That really sucks, would have been a nice drive from CA.
 

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I definetely hear you on that one, I've actually looked online at CA vehicles, many to choose from. Unfortunately upon looking at import regulations, CDN goverment says to refer to Mercedes-Benz and when I did, I found that in that model year the E320, 420 are not qualified to be imported into Canada. That really sucks, would have been a nice drive from CA.
See post #6. The only difference between 94s and 95s is the wheels - 94 is painted/clearcoated, 95 is polished/clearcoated. In my experience the painted 94s seem to hold up a little better.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Getting a dry southern/western U.S. car is a great idea but it really isn't practical to import a U.S. car into Canada until it is 15 years old based on the date of manufacture. But that's not too far off for getting a 94, which is virtually the same as a 95. For example my 94 E420 was made on July 1, 1993, so it's importable into Canada in about 4 months.
I haven't read anything that mentions age and admissibility Where did you read about that rule?

Transport Canada says to refer to this link

Mercedes-Benz Canada
 

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Getting a dry southern/western U.S. car is a great idea but it really isn't practical to import a U.S. car into Canada until it is 15 years old based on the date of manufacture. But that's not too far off for getting a 94, which is virtually the same as a 95. For example my 94 E420 was made on July 1, 1993, so it's importable into Canada in about 4 months.
Not true, this only applies to cars that were not originally sold to North American specs overseas. I could import a 2006 Mercedes right now, the only stipulation is that the car meet Canadian/Ontario certification standards. The 15 year old importation law applies to vehicles that were sold overseas, but were also sold in North America. You would then have to get that car to conform to its Canadian counterpart, things like daytime running lights and KM/H speedometers.

As for buying a car in Toronto, stay away from Kingston Road!!!!! You'll pay a premium at the Benz dealers, but they're unlikely to sell something that old on a Benz lot anyway. Be careful of the dealers around 400/Steeles, there's some good spots out there such as my uncle's dealership on Steeles. I can't remember the name right now, I think it was MJM Auto sales on Steeles right next door to where the old Maranello Ferrari dealer was. It's on the south side of the street, literally just east of the Ferrari dealer. Dunno if he's still doing it, I haven't spoken to him in a while. Watch out for the sneaky Russian dealers in that area, lots of mobsters with garages. Be careful in Mississauga, mostly Indian folks and many of them sell nothing but recycled junk. In Woodbridge, you'll be OK but hard pressed to get a good deal from a fast talking Italian. Yonge and steeles you just might get talked into paying a little much from an Iranian salesman. East of Toronto, such as Ajax/Pickering/Oshawa you might find a good deal and you might find crap. Mostly white folks out there, they're usually straight forward but you never know. In Markham, unless you speak Mandarin or Cantonese you're not going to find out the real scoop on the car you're looking at.
Haha I love my racial breakdown of Toronto. Man I miss that place! Eighteen years is a long time, I hope I didnt offend anyone with my post but having been in the automotive industry for over a decade in Toronto I know all the ins and outs there!:thumbsup:

*Edit* Your 94 would be importable in one YEAR and 4 months ;) if we were going on the 15 year rule, but since your car was originally sold in the US it's importable today!
 

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Not true, this only applies to cars that were not originally sold to North American specs overseas. I could import a 2006 Mercedes right now, the only stipulation is that the car meet Canadian/Ontario certification standards. The 15 year old importation law applies to vehicles that were sold overseas, but were also sold in North America. You would then have to get that car to conform to its Canadian counterpart, things like daytime running lights and KM/H speedometers.

*Edit* Your 94 would be importable in one YEAR and 4 months ;) if we were going on the 15 year rule, but since your car was originally sold in the US it's importable today!
The statement was not that it couldn't be imported but that it wasn't practical to import a 94/95 - because of the relatively low value and relatively high red tape. Once it becomes 15 years old the red tape disappears. And apparently before 15 years you need a letter from MB Canada - and it looks like they're showing this car as inadmissable - for whatever reason. But try a search - quite a few threads on this.

Read the regulations again, and the previous posts - the 15 years is not based on the model year but the manufacture date. My car was made in July 1993, an early 1994 model, and therefore is 15 years old in July 2008 - in about 4 months.
 

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Thanks for the link....what are the details of your vehicle?
1994 E420, smoke silver/creme beige, 98k, 5 yrs in TX, 8 yrs in AZ, clean Carfax, no ASR, very nice car. Nice cars are out there but even in the U.S. sunbelt they are quite rare. Cars with nice paint, clean interior, mechanically sound, clean Carfax, and reasonable miles are maybe one out of 10 cars or perhaps even one out of 20. If you're looking for an original car California is not a particularly fruitful place to look - too many high miles, coastal rust, chrome wheels, big wheels, poor lower cladding paint jobs. If you're looking for a tricked out car it's heaven.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
1994 E420, smoke silver/creme beige, 98k, 5 yrs in TX, 8 yrs in AZ, clean Carfax, no ASR, very nice car. Nice cars are out there but even in the U.S. sunbelt they are quite rare. Cars with nice paint, clean interior, mechanically sound, clean Carfax, and reasonable miles are maybe one out of 10 cars or perhaps even one out of 20. If you're looking for an original car California is not a particularly fruitful place to look - too many high miles, coastal rust, chrome wheels, big wheels, poor lower cladding paint jobs. If you're looking for a tricked out car it's heaven.

There is an E420 here with 236km on it, from the pictures it looks quite good. Of course that doesn't mean it IS good. It just seems that is a high amount of km, I would hope to put another 75-100 on the car I would buy without running into very costly repairs. I may go take a look at the car this weekend, take it out for a spin at the very least.
 

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The statement was not that it couldn't be imported but that it wasn't practical to import a 94/95 - because of the relatively low value and relatively high red tape. Once it becomes 15 years old the red tape disappears. And apparently before 15 years you need a letter from MB Canada - and it looks like they're showing this car as inadmissable - for whatever reason. But try a search - quite a few threads on this.

Read the regulations again, and the previous posts - the 15 years is not based on the model year but the manufacture date. My car was made in July 1993, an early 1994 model, and therefore is 15 years old in July 2008 - in about 4 months.
OK, I misunderstood you then. It is true that it's quite painless to import something 15 years and older, but I dont see why you would need a letter from MB Canada. My friend just imported a 2000 Viper RT10 without ANY hassles whatsoever, and I dont think it has anything to do with the fact that it was manufactured here. Other friends of mine have imported all sorts of Benzes and BMWs without ever needing letters from the manufacturer.
Keep in mind, on the internet everyone has an opinion and relatively few have experience. My experience isn't direct, but it's close enough that I know that none of my friends or business associates needed a letter from the manufacturer.
The only other piece of advice I can offer is this: If you're importing the car yourself, MAKE SURE you give the port of entry 72 hours notice. This means wherever you plan to bring the car into the country, be it Detroit/Windsor, Peace Bridge, Niagara Falls etc you would have to give that port 72 hours of notice along with proper paperwork before you even bring the car there. Otherwise, you get a nice fat $1000 fine! Happened during a deal I made with an American guy, trading cars. He was pissed.
 

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OK, I misunderstood you then. It is true that it's quite painless to import something 15 years and older, but I dont see why you would need a letter from MB Canada. My friend just imported a 2000 Viper RT10 without ANY hassles whatsoever, and I dont think it has anything to do with the fact that it was manufactured here. Other friends of mine have imported all sorts of Benzes and BMWs without ever needing letters from the manufacturer.
Keep in mind, on the internet everyone has an opinion and relatively few have experience. My experience isn't direct, but it's close enough that I know that none of my friends or business associates needed a letter from the manufacturer.
The only other piece of advice I can offer is this: If you're importing the car yourself, MAKE SURE you give the port of entry 72 hours notice. This means wherever you plan to bring the car into the country, be it Detroit/Windsor, Peace Bridge, Niagara Falls etc you would have to give that port 72 hours of notice along with proper paperwork before you even bring the car there. Otherwise, you get a nice fat $1000 fine! Happened during a deal I made with an American guy, trading cars. He was pissed.

If the Mercedes isn't older than 15 years it appears that you need a letter from Mercedes-Benz Canada according to their admissibility page. Under 15 years and the 95 e320/e420 are not admissible.
 

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Keep in mind, on the internet everyone has an opinion and relatively few have experience. My experience isn't direct, but it's close enough that I know that none of my friends or business associates needed a letter from the manufacturer.
In this case the internet "opinions" are those of Transport Canada and MB Canada and they are controlling. If Transport Canada says you need a letter, you need a letter. And in fact they are saying you need a letter on all under 15 year old MBs. And MB Canada site is specifying that the cars in question are inadmissible. Your experience with other brands is not relevant. I don't think you're reading the links.
 

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If the Mercedes isn't older than 15 years it appears that you need a letter from Mercedes-Benz Canada according to their admissibility page. Under 15 years and the 95 e320/e420 are not admissible.
ALL E class Benzes are admissible! Whether it be a 94-95 E320 or E500 or a 2007 E350, they are built to the same specifications with very minor differences (CDN vs US). Some of the earlier cars don't have daytime running lights, but it's all trivial. The only thing I can see being different is the bumper impact ratings, but that should not pose a problem as the US and Canadian cars use the same bumper covers. I am 100% sure on this, if you're not it's time to contact the dealer or MB canada since you'd have to get a letter from them anyway.
 
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