Have narrowed my 500 SL search to a 1998 and a 1999. All other factors being roughly equal, which should I favor?
Appreciate your thoughts! Many thanks.If all other factors are equal, you can’t really go wrong with either. Aside from the engine difference, The 99 will have an updated gauge cluster (chrome rings, oil temp instead of oil pressure), tail lights, steering wheel, stereo head unit. As for reliability, if both have been taken care of well, both will be equal. The forum is split on the merits of each engine and you can’t go wrong with either.
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Thanks. I've had Jaguars and a BMW 850. I've lived in the land of pricey parts. Scary place to be!Also take a look at this site to get an idea of how much parts will cost you
The #1 Online Source for Genuine, OE, & OEM European Replacement Car Parts since 1986. Lifetime Replacement Guarantee, Free Shipping, and Unlimited Returns Call: 1-860-388-9001www.fcpeuro.com
That is a great site. So are Pelican Parts and Auto Haus AZ. I have been very successful with ebay as well for random interior and exterior tidbits that I needed/continue to need.Thanks. I've had Jaguars and a BMW 850. I've lived in the land of pricey parts. Scary place to be!
Have to agree myself, and I know this seems like trivia, but on the M113 motor, they made changing the oil filter easier than any other motor I've ever worked on. The filter housing is up front and on top, just so easy to replace the filter. An Engineer must NOT have designed it, I think a Mechanic must have created this design... Engineers love to bury everything and make at least 1 bolt inaccessible...lolI’d go for a 1999+ for the updates and easier to work on engine. If I were you I’d specifically look for 01 and 02 cause sport package is standard on those years
on the headlights, yup, the std headlights are not in any way a headlight, more like a parking light. I upgraded to the euro headlights and they are FAR FAR FAR better than the std headlights. Actually make the car driveable at night. Still not up to several other cars I have, but better than some others I have owned. Probably not up to the Xenon lights, but at least adequate.If it's a matter of just two specific cars, (not the years), then it's overall condition, mileage, maint history, etc. between the two cars.
After owning 3 of them now, without a doubt, I would not buy any 129 if it did not have the Xenon headlights, or Euro headlights. or the cars price is low enough to upgrade the headlights as soon as you buy the car.
The standard 129 headlights are extremely anemic, to the point of being unsafe in my book. My 2000 Sport has Xenon, my wife's 99 non-sport does not, we don't drive her car at night anymore, the difference is incredible. The Xenon lights are really superior in every way, lighting up the road almost as far as you can see. The std lights on her 129 have you driving at 30-40 mph on dark roads and you can't see all that far, not just aiming the lights, they are normally dimmer, a lot dimmer... Not many owners talk about this, and they should. Mercedes should not have sold $80K plus cars with headlights with so little performance.
The Xenon lights are not a cheap date to purchase and have installed. I have seen posts where SL owners in the US have purchased the Euro version headlights, which they claim are very bright, for less money that Xenon's
But make it easy, buy a good condition 129 with Xenon's, any year, doesn't hardly matter which year, (accept I would stick with 97's up just to get away from the bio wire insulation mess in general)....
my 2 cents...