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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking to buy a C280. Can someone clarify if it's a straight 6 or V6? I know older models were straight 6 but kbb.com tells me the 99 model is a V6. I'm confused. I know the straight 6 had fairly common head gasket issues. If the 99 model happens to have a totally different motor (V6) did it have any common major issues such as head gaskets problems?
 

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'01-E320 & 02-ST2
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1998 introduced MB's first modular V engines, the M112 and M113 to the NA market. The 113 V8 was initially the 4.3L, while the 112 V6 was available in 2.4, 2.6, 2.8 & 3.2 liter displacements. These were commonly known as the 240, 260, 280 and 320 and placed in many chassis and marketed around the globe.

To date there have been no significant/internal problems with the modular engines. Of course it's important to have proper maintenance records to prevent those kinds of issues. ;)

Happy shopping.
 

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I'm going to look at a C280 tonight with 96k miles. What, in particular, should I look for on this car that are possible problem issues? These could include mechanical, electrical, etc. I just don't want to miss something that might be obvious. I'm just not familar with MB vehicles. I'm mechanically savvy but want pointers. I assume these V6 engines have timing chains like the earlier C280 straight 6's?

Thanks for any comments or pointers?
 

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1999 C280
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Yes, timing chain not belt.
Check out tranny closely. The seems to have a life of 125k and then need a full rebuild.

Mark
 

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Shocking. This 99 C280 has the 5 speed auto correct? Only good for 125k as the norm? Wow. What is the best way to verify the tranny is ok? I mean if it shifts well and doesn't slip in this 105 degree Texas heat how else will I know if the tranny is sound?
 

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Shocking. This 99 C280 has the 5 speed auto correct? Only good for 125k as the norm? Wow. What is the best way to verify the tranny is ok? I mean if it shifts well and doesn't slip in this 105 degree Texas heat how else will I know if the tranny is sound?
The problem with the 722.6xx transmission is that it was originally marketed as "maintenance free/sealed for life" and too many people bought into that marketing hype.

If the AT is serviced, it will last a long time. There are plenty of them over 200K miles without problems. So basically you want one that has service records and ideally the AT was serviced before 75,000 miles, that would be great.

Now, given the tenor of your questions, you seem not to be very familiar with MB, so I'm going to offer you a nickel's worth of free advice (bonus points if you ID the reference). ;)

Before you purchase a used MB, get a PPI ("pre-purchase inspection") through an indie shop that is familiar with MBs of the generation you are considering. The few hundred this will cost will result in one of three things:
1. There are serious problems and you should just walk away;
2. There is nothing significantly wrong, just a few maintenance items to tidy up; or
3. The car is basically sound but there are some significant issues that need attention (this gives you leverage to negotiate a better deal if this is the car you want).

If you don't get a PPI, you are just rolling the dice. And no matter how many generic questions you post "timing chain? Transmission? Engine type? Head gasket?" that will tell you NOTHING at all about the specific car you are looking at.

Besides which there is a laundry list of possibilities as well. Unless you are well familiar with the model and year you're looking at, you're not qualified to make a sound judgment about it.

A satisfactory PPI will give you the confidence to know you're buying a sound vehicle and you'll know whatever needs to be taken care of, and the peace of mind that will give you far outweighs the cost.

Good luck.
 

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2010 C200 CGI /W203/SLK230/W202/230E/280SE
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Check out tranny closely. The seems to have a life of 125k and then need a full rebuild.
Garbage! - bad information.

The 722.6 5 speed is a good transmission fitted to many MB variants - as stated above, you just need to see evidence of an ATF and filter change earlier in it's life.

Oberoi
 

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1999 C280
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Oberio, my experience is that these transmissions have a limited life.

BS that it is bad information I gave. Re-read my post. Search this forum and talk to owners and I am sure the #1 big ticket issue is the trans.

I have seen several of these cars over the years and in talking to my mechanic who owns the BEST exclusive MB shop in Albuquerque, he said he has rebuilt more trannys on these cars than he can count.
AND HE HAS NEVER SEEN ONE LAST MORE THAN 175K MILES REGARDLESS OF SERVICE HISTORY.

I love my W202. My trans was serviced at 45k and again at 85k and that did not stop the need for a full rebuild at 128k.

Mark
 

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2.3-16 | A3 2.0T | 986 Boxster
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HE HAS NEVER SEEN ONE LAST MORE THAN 175K MILES REGARDLESS OF SERVICE HISTORY.
Rubbish! Mine is pushing 200,000 miles with 2 fluid changes in it's life. Last one was about 140,000 miles, the original owner did the first one at 70,000 miles. I can see the conductor plate being the only real issue in the 722.6 and it won't require a rebuild if it fails.

I'm sure your mechanic has seen his share of 722.6 transmission problems but saying they self destruct at 125,000 miles and he's never seen one go past 175,000 miles is not the norm. There's plenty of W210 diesels with 200,000 and even 300,000 plus miles with the original 722.6 going strong.

To the original poster. Don't be scared away because of one mechanics opinion. I'm sure there have been transmissions that have not maid those milestones without a rebuild but most will be fine with regular service. The best advice here was to find a car, get a pre purchase inspection and go from there.
 
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