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Discussion Starter #1
I'm kinda testing the waters here. My theory is that most of you young lions almost immediately go to custom rims on your 124's.;) That being said, there should be a fair number of decent factory rims stored here and there?

Early this winter after I replaced the pressure transducer in the 4matic valve and bled the system, I went out for a spin in the neighborhood when there was a decent amount of snow on the ground. I was testing the system and it was working as normal. However, I hit a patch of ice while screwing around recklessly (the 4matic lures you into thinking you can do anything on snow & ice) and the vehicle swung over and hit the curb...hard. Only hit the right rear wheel and at first I didn't see any damage. But I was determined to find some because of the hit. Well, I cracked a rim. I had them swap the tire and put it on the spare rim and tossed the broken rim.

I'm still deciding what I want to do....use my four factory rims and mount snow tires on those and run with some decent looking custom rims. Or....buy five factory rims; replace the broken spare and mount snow tires on the four used factory rims. Cheaper of course to buy the used factory. I don't hate the factory look, but those AMG styled rims I saw on a wagon once were bad to the bone! But those are gonna cost....

So.....who has a set of factory rims (must have all the paint, look nice and be true)....five would be the ideal if I do this?

Kevin
 

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I've found all my MB rims on craigslist. They were 16" and 17" from later models. I once bought some 500 mile 17" "take-offs" from a new '06 C230 Kompressor for $600, which would probably just buy the tires if I bought them new. Great deals out there if you look hard enough. I recommend at least 16" for your 4Matic. 17" look kinda funny if you don't lower it a little.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I've found all my MB rims on craigslist. They were 16" and 17" from later models. I once bought some 500 mile 17" "take-offs" from a new '06 C230 Kompressor for $600, which would probably just buy the tires if I bought them new. Great deals out there if you look hard enough. I recommend at least 16" for your 4Matic. 17" look kinda funny if you don't lower it a little.
What about the speedometer and what about rubbing with the 4matic/16"?

Kevin
 

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I think I remember a post on here a long, long time ago about aftermarket wheels interfering and/or causing issues with the transfer case in the 4matic system. I think it's probably best to stick with factory rims on any 4matic.

On a side note, I'm strongly considering selling my 18" Carlsson rims that came on my new W124 wagon. The ride quality on these low profile tires is not what I want and is interfering with the cargo hauling duty of the wagon since it's my work car. No rubbing issues, just doesn't ride like a classic MB.

So if anyone's got a good set of stock telephone dial rims with tires in So Cal, let me know. Will consider swap + cash.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I think I remember a post on here a long, long time ago about aftermarket wheels interfering and/or causing issues with the transfer case in the 4matic system. I think it's probably best to stick with factory rims on any 4matic.
That would definitely be my concern with taller wheels......

Kevin
 

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(the 4matic lures you into thinking you can do anything on snow & ice)
Not really, MB's 4matic is more of a driver aid (like ASR) than anything else especially in the W124 4matics. Perhaps MB should have called it AWD 1.0

Compared to Audi's Quattro system, 4matic pales in performance, traction, durability, serviceability.

I think MB got 4matic right in the MLs, but in the sedans it's always been a compromise even today.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Not really, MB's 4matic is more of a driver aid (like ASR) than anything else especially in the W124 4matics. Perhaps MB should have called it AWD 1.0

Compared to Audi's Quattro system, 4matic pales in performance, traction, durability, serviceability.

I think MB got 4matic right in the MLs, but in the sedans it's always been a compromise even today.
I couldn't disagree more...I get by in the winter in severe snow/ice on hwy tires and I have/had 4wheel drive trucks and military vehicles throughout my life. Except for the low clearance, the 4matic cars are remarkable on snow & ice. I also go to various ski resorts where the roads really suck a lot of the time.

Whether Audi's Quattro system is better I can't say...never drove one. Considering the 4matic has three different stages of traction control and is working with a computer in microseconds, it does a great job. I'm not saying it is the best, present traction control out there, but to malign it is ridiculous.

Kevin
 

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Try any Audi Quattro, preferably an S4/A4 and go mountain carving with it. You'll be amazed. Quattro can also take power add-ons very easily, I've seen them go over 700HP without any drivetrain changes.

I'm not trying to malign 4matic, I have the same opinion for BMW's xDrive. I like 4matic (a lot) in the MLs, for example. It's just that in a car platform, Audi has been doing AWD longer & far better than MB & BMW. Audi has won many a rally races with Quattro, even before the W124 was born. On the W124, AWD was more of an afterthought and/or expensive option. The service & parts availability aspects on the 4matic definitely brings this out.
 

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Back to the wheel question, I think rim size is less important than ending up with the same diameter, so 16s w shorter tires seem within the expected tolerances.

HOWEVER, as has been noted, larger wheels on a tall car don't look great and after briefly running 17" monoblocks on mine, I reverted to stock 15s for the last 2 years of ownership.
 

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Back to the wheel question, I think rim size is less important than ending up with the same diameter, so 16s w shorter tires seem within the expected tolerances.

HOWEVER, as has been noted, larger wheels on a tall car don't look great and after briefly running 17" monoblocks on mine, I reverted to stock 15s for the last 2 years of ownership.
Yeah, that's been my experience as well. I think 16" rims are a nice compromise if you want to update the looks a bit, and they tend to perform better due to a reduction in flexing from the shorter sidewall. Use this tire size calculator to determine what tires you'd need to install on larger diameter rims in order to keep the speedo accurate. I think the only other caveat would be to ensure that whatever rims you get for a 4Matic aren't staggered--wider in back than front.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Try any Audi Quattro, preferably an S4/A4 and go mountain carving with it. You'll be amazed. Quattro can also take power add-ons very easily, I've seen them go over 700HP without any drivetrain changes.

I'm not trying to malign 4matic, I have the same opinion for BMW's xDrive. I like 4matic (a lot) in the MLs, for example. It's just that in a car platform, Audi has been doing AWD longer & far better than MB & BMW. Audi has won many a rally races with Quattro, even before the W124 was born. On the W124, AWD was more of an afterthought and/or expensive option. The service & parts availability aspects on the 4matic definitely brings this out.
We have all manor of 4WD here because we live at the base of the Blue Mountains. I can keep up with anything and even push snow. The only thing holding the wagon back is that it's conceivable to high center it. My neighbor next door has a newer 4WD Subaru wagon. I have pulled this vehicle out of deep snow on three occasions. Granted, she's probably not the best driver in snow, but I've driven the vehicle myself and am not impressed. When we had that brutal snow siege here in 2007, my wagon and I became a 'taxi' for anybody wanting to go to town and get back safely.

If you know anything about the entire design of the first gen 4matic, you'd know it's more than a "afterthought and/or expensive option". Obviously, they didn't hit it perfectly with the troubles in the TC etc. The last thing in the world I would want, would be some neon-boy-racer Audi Quattro to squeeze myself into, or try to win rally races with it. The wagon does everything I ask of it and more...always has. Never said it was the best 4WD vehicle in NA, just that it performs well and seduces you into liking it.

Kevin
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Back to the wheel question, I think rim size is less important than ending up with the same diameter, so 16s w shorter tires seem within the expected tolerances.

HOWEVER, as has been noted, larger wheels on a tall car don't look great and after briefly running 17" monoblocks on mine, I reverted to stock 15s for the last 2 years of ownership.
I'm pretty sure I'm gonna stay with the 15's.....unless I got a deal on 16's and I knew for sure there would be no geometry problems with the 4matic. But I would think that if I had the same profile with 16's it would be OK, as you say.

I just put high speed Toyo's on, so I would be reluctant to re-rubber another set of rims-except with snow tires. I don't mind the factory painted rims, because the rims I see that really interest me are crazy expensive.:rolleyes:

Kevin
 

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Yeah I like my car to be original looking as possible.

Mines a 89' black on black. 130,000 miles. Looks like new, ESPECIALLY inside. Emergency kit untouched etc.

Personally, i want it to look normal. Classy. Including the rims. I still have the originals, but i would like to update them to mint new ones.

Are 16"s okay? Same 89' style... I think mine are 15's don't really know for sure.
 

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I think the early R129 came with a 16" version of the 15" 15 hole alloy rims that were found on most early 124s, but I'm pretty sure the offset is different.
 
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