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2003 SLK230
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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,
I don't own an SLK, but I would very much like to. In fact, I'm in the process of shopping for an '01 or '02 right now and wanted to see if I could get some input from current owners on what to look for in buying a used SLK? Also, is an extended dealer warranty is a good idea and what a reasonable price might be?

Specifically, I've been looking at a silver 2002 230 Kompressor with 30,000 miles:



It seems to be in nearly mint condition and was originally a leased car, which, according to Carfax, appears to've been maintained (by the original leasing dealer) on a regular basis. The car was recently traded into another (non-Mercedes) dealer, who has it tagged/priced (on the windscreen) at just under $17,000. I'm wondering what the true value would be so I can figure out what a reasonable offer might be?
 

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2003 SLK230
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653 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Thanks, that's what I was thinking. Or, possibly, even $12k, considering the current economic hard times for the auto industry?
I'm sure the price displayed on the windscreen isn't what they actually expect most to pay for the car. But I'm not the greatest price negotiator, so I'm wondering how low I should expect they'd go?

Also, a friend-of-a-friend who owned a 2000 model mentioned that while she loved the SLK, she thought the engine was underpowered and noisy. I'm definitely not an aggressive driver and I've spent the past 25 years driving a '79 Nissan 280ZX (definitely neither fast nor quiet by today's standards!), but I was wondering if this is a commonly held opinion?
 

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2000 SLK 230 manual, original owner
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227 Posts
I have a 2000 230. Underpowered? Not high enough into the rev band. Noisy? It's a sports car! Actually, if you cruise around at low rpm, it's very quiet. But, if you're on a twisty 2-lane road, it can definitely scoot. The car can be whatever you want it to be, which is one of the joys of owning it.

--Larry
 

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PROUD OWNER! 2002 slk32 AMG
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i piad under 17 k for my slk32. in this market cash is king. if you are able i would offer 10k cash and let them stew on it. i bet you get a call! dont forget to look at the 320 version and the almighty 32 amg.
 

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2003 SLK230 USA model, Auto Transmission, Stock, Firemist Red
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The 2003 230 slk is listed at 192hp, the 320 is 215, slk32 amg is 349. My 230 has plenty of pep. 192hp in a 2 seat lightweight roadster is adequate for some fun romps through mountain curves, and speeds that can exceed 140mph.
 

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2002 SLK 32 AMG, bone stock. 1987 190E 2.3-16 valve (destroyed). 2005 E320 new toy.
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According to Kelly's Blue Book:

Dealer's sale: $16,740 .

Private party sale: $14,140

Trade in value: $11,875

You can probably do better, but it's more along the lines of how long have they had the car, and how bad do they want to get rid of it.... :D
 

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1998 SLK230 240,xxx Miles
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7,704 Posts
Ask how many keys there are, and are there manuals for the car, a car cover?, or wind screen. Check out the spare tire and check for the air pump, tools and shorter bolts for the spare.
The manual is the most important, there's a lot of info on the car if you run into problems.
 

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2003 SLK230
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Discussion Starter #9
i piad under 17 k for my slk32. in this market cash is king. if you are able i would offer 10k cash and let them stew on it. i bet you get a call! dont forget to look at the 320 version and the almighty 32 amg.
I just returned from the car dealer's and I did just that (offer $10k cash). The salesman spoke with the sales manager (the usual procedure) and returned with a counter offer of 15.5k, which I declined. I then offered $12,5k, which they also declined:crybaby2:. At that point, I left my number and told them to ring me if they can come closer to my offer. Maybe I'll get lucky and get a call:confused:...
 

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2003 SLK230
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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
The 2003 230 slk is listed at 192hp, the 320 is 215, slk32 amg is 349. My 230 has plenty of pep. 192hp in a 2 seat lightweight roadster is adequate for some fun romps through mountain curves, and speeds that can exceed 140mph.
Good points.
Having lived with my 280ZX's 2800 lb weight and 145 hp, the 230's 192 horses'll probably be adequate.

According to Kelly's Blue Book:
Dealer's sale: $16,740 .
Private party sale: $14,140
Trade in value: $11,875
You can probably do better, but it's more along the lines of how long have they had the car, and how bad do they want to get rid of it.... :D
Yes, I saw the Kelly numbers and they've had the car (according to the salesman) for about a week and a half, and the dealership was empty both times I was there. So I guess it all comes down to how eager they are to deal...


Ask how many keys there are, and are there manuals for the car, a car cover?, or wind screen. Check out the spare tire and check for the air pump, tools and shorter bolts for the spare.
The manual is the most important, there's a lot of info on the car if you run into problems.
Boy, I wish I'd seen your post before I left the dealership. I checked the car out (mostly the undercarriage and functioning of the hard top) after I test drove it, but I never thought to check for any of these things. I'll definitely add those to my checklist for the next SLK I look at (or if I get "The Call" from this dealer).


Also, for whatever it's worth, the car was a trade-in from the original owner, a woman in her late 60s. She brought it in shortly after her husband passed away and traded the SLK in with her late husband's Cadillac. I also looked up the car's history on Carfax and, aside from the regular scheduled maintenance, she had the "Tail light assembly replaced" 3 times: once in '03, again in '05 and, finally, in '07. Is this a known issue with SLKs? If not, I wonder if the woman may've had a proclivity for backing into things?
 

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PROUD OWNER! 2002 slk32 AMG
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if they only had the car for a wek or so they wont be hungry yet. check autotrader.com expand your search to a 2000 mile radius. plane tickets are cheap and m/b inspection will find most issues
and as a side note make an offer once if it doesnt go leave. make them realize they want to sell the car more than you want to buy it!
 

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2003 SLK230
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653 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
So I shouldn't counter-offer their counter-offer?
Unfortunately, I don't really have the time to visit distant dealers, which is probably a good idea otherwise. I'll check autotrader.com. Thanks for the tip!
 

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PROUD OWNER! 2002 slk32 AMG
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its just my .02 but i would pass on this 1. there are many out there and the way to fund the right 1 is to not be in any kind of a hurry. i spent 6 months looking for mine and ended up with a 32 that listed for 23k and paid 16750. so patience is the key
 

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2003 SLK230
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Discussion Starter #14
Wow! I wasn't aware that there was (ever) that much leeway in used Mercedes pricing!

I'm really trying to keep the total cost below $14k, but if I can find a 32 for $16k, I'd certainly have to consider tossing a couple grand more into my car kitty.
 

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PROUD OWNER! 2002 slk32 AMG
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the benz market is just the same as any other car market. if you stay within the dealership lot cars you are going to pay much more. i found a private seller who also had a m5 and a porsche along with a toyota xb, all financed. needless to say he was VERY motivated! a initially i had a deal at 19k before the m/b inspection. the car needed approx 2700 in repairs so i dropped the price to 16k and renegotiated. finall price and i used the savings to buy the parts online and did the work myself. the 23k is kbb bluebook. he was asking 21k. basiclly he settled for what he owed on it because the market is very slow. having said all this i was also dealing with m/b dealer in hickory nc and they came off 4k on their 32 but it wasnt enough for me so i passed
car has all manuals 3 keys 2 stereos and 2 sets of rims. 36k on the clock when i picked her up.
all in all i am very satisfied, but again the key was patience and having the cash to make the deal
 

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2003 SLK230
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Discussion Starter #16
That's definitely a nice deal even if deals like that tend to be few and far between. Unfortunately, I don't really have the luxury of spending six months searching. But point taken.
 

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PROUD OWNER! 2002 slk32 AMG
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i agree not everyone can wait. i have a old pickup and a old buick which i drive everyday. this car is a replacement for my 06 harley which i sold to buy this car. after 40 yrs of riding bikes i wanted a change and so this is more of a weekender ride
 

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2003 SLK230
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Discussion Starter #20
i agree not everyone can wait. i have a old pickup and a old buick which i drive everyday. this car is a replacement for my 06 harley which i sold to buy this car. after 40 yrs of riding bikes i wanted a change and so this is more of a weekender ride
Interesting history and I'm coming from something similar. I sold a Sportster many years ago and bought a Yamaha that I've been driving since '75. I've also got a "toy" car for nice weekends. The SLK'll be replacing my 30 year old Nissan ZX, which has developed too much structural rust to be reliable for daily transportation.

this has been for sale for over 6 months
Cars For Sale: Car Details - AutoTrader.com
Thank you for the links. I actually did see this car and would've looked into it if it were closer (I'm in the DC area) and not black, which is one of the few colors I'm not turned on by. But, mainly, I just don't have the time to do alot of traveling in search of cars right now. At least, not long distance traveling.

This one would be very interesting, especially since it's low mileage and the right color, but, again, too far away.:crybaby2:
 
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