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1997 SL 500 w/Pano, 1999 CLK 320
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598 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My back window has a small crack, not that big of a deal since I store the car in the winter and drive it only on nice days in the summer with the top down.

I did some checking about replacement costs...A shop in Seattle says a aftermarket cloth top is $1000... they want want $2300 for a complete replacement job.

I thought that was high until I called out local dealer...they want $4500 to replace it with an OEM top and $3250 for a aftermarket unit.
I haven't heard from a third shop, but in the past they quoted $1000 just to replace the windows...so $50 for plastic, the rest is labor.

Really?
Any thoughts?
 

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2000 SL500, 2001 S600, 2004 E320
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550 Posts
Last time I asked the dealer, few years ago, they quoted me $8,500 for new original MB soft top. They Would Not install an aftermarket top. At the time I thought they were just replacing the whole Top-Frame assembly, which is about $6,100 these days (part only)… so about $3,000 labour (their cost must be less than 6,099) for job that takes 3-4 hours Max.

https://www.mercedespartshub.com/v-1997-mercedes-benz-sl500--base--5-0l-v8-gas/body--cover-and-components

My local independent shops (Los Angeles West side) would charge about $1,800 plus... for an aftermarket (GAHH quality) top.

I bought my own Top ($600 or so) and drove down to Orange County to have it installed for $350… they did excellent job. This was while ago so I'm not sure about prices today but, if you're interested I can probably dig the phone #… Vacation in So Cal???... could possibly save you some cash on new top.
 

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Premium Member
2002 Black SL500, 2000 Azure blue SL500, 2005 Silver (A209) CLK500
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931 Posts
Been...talked about often...
Try..
German Auto Tops...
Hollywood, Ca...Google them.
Buy the Hartz top... around $700...shipping might be included...
Then you need to do some leg work and actually drive your car to various shops...not necessarily convertible shops....could be upholstery shops.
It's a 12/15 hour job... I paid a few shops over the years and actually did 2 replacements on my own...if shop charges you over $900....they are greedy and ripping you off.
It is not difficult to replace. Only psychologically intimidating.
 

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94 SL320 98 SL500 99 SL600
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943 Posts
Last time I asked the dealer, few years ago, they quoted me $8,500 for new original MB soft top. They Would Not install an aftermarket top. At the time I thought they were just replacing the whole Top-Frame assembly, which is about $6,100 these days (part only)… so about $3,000 labour (their cost must be less than 6,099) for job that takes 3-4 hours Max.

https://www.mercedespartshub.com/v-1997-mercedes-benz-sl500--base--5-0l-v8-gas/body--cover-and-components

My local independent shops (Los Angeles West side) would charge about $1,800 plus... for an aftermarket (GAHH quality) top.

I bought my own Top ($600 or so) and drove down to Orange County to have it installed for $350… they did excellent job. This was while ago so I'm not sure about prices today but, if you're interested I can probably dig the phone #… Vacation in So Cal???... could possibly save you some cash on new top.
I had all three of my SL's done in Orange County for $1200.00 each parts and labor German tops.
 

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1991 Mercedes 500SL, 1981 Mercedes 380SLC, 1980 Mercedes 380SL, 1981 Porsche 911, 1995 BMW 740iL,etc
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31 Posts
I had all three of my SL's done in Orange County for $1200.00 each parts and labor German tops.
I've heard of German Auto Tops in Hollywood and it's all been positive. I spend a lot of time in Orange County and would really like to know the name of the place if you can locate it and any other advice / input you might have. Thanks in advance! :)
 

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94 SL320 98 SL500 99 SL600
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943 Posts
I've heard of German Auto Tops in Hollywood and it's all been positive. I spend a lot of time in Orange County and would really like to know the name of the place if you can locate it and any other advice / input you might have. Thanks in advance! :)
MY tops were replaced by Pete at Westminster Auto Upholstery in Anaheim CA. Check his website

IMG_5615.jpg
 

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1991 Mercedes 500SL, 1981 Mercedes 380SLC, 1980 Mercedes 380SL, 1981 Porsche 911, 1995 BMW 740iL,etc
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31 Posts
The SL500 was $1150. The SL600 was $1350. due to the brown color. Still at least $1500. less than the MotherShip:)
I've been looking for a source for the tops and an installer for a couple of years now. Only read about some places in LA. It is extremely helpful and assuring to hear from someone directly who has a new top installed. I thank you again! :)
 

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Departed 1998 SL500 (and the Pano is in Bogota)
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11,000 Posts
Since you guys are near LA, may want ton take a drive down to Mexico for the install.
 
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