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2005 Crossfire SRT6, 1986 560SL, 1964 TR4
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Discussion Starter #1
...an SEC coupe. I'm thinking a 560 for engine performance. I am currently considering a 1986 560 SEC with 64,000. I would like to know if this class has typical issues and what I need to look for. I bought a Jaguar XJS on impulse, then did the research and I could not sell that car fast enough. The issues were great and many from what I read about that particular car. Thanks for your help.
 

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1966 200 Diesel; 1985 500 SEL (wrecked); 1991 420 SEL; 1979 280E (Home Market); 1993 190E 2.6
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If you didn't want to deal with an XJ, you probably don't want to deal with one of these, or any classic for that matter.
 

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'87 560SEC: '86 AMG 560SEC: '87 560SEL - PAST: Heckflosse 190 & 230S
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typical issues

...I would like to know if this class has typical issues and what I need to look for.
Try starting at the top of this forum section - where it says:
*** Attention NEWBIES... FAQ for w126 cars ***
There you'll notice the 2nd bullet item titled:
I am about to purchase a car, what should I look for? - with a link to pointers/advice.
 

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2005 Crossfire SRT6, 1986 560SL, 1964 TR4
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Discussion Starter #4
Try starting at the top of this forum section - where it says:

There you'll notice the 2nd bullet item titled:
I am about to purchase a car, what should I look for? - with a link to pointers/advice.
Thank you MrBits. That was exactly what I was looking for. There seems to be no inherent engineering flaws like the XJS I had. Thank God they didn't appear or I would be much poorer.
 

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I have both jags and mb, it's all about getting the right model

The 6 cylinder xjs from 94-96 was 100x better than the problem ridden v12s

Same with mb- a 1990 560sec is 200x better than a1993 600sec

But even so , these are old finicky cars and will have issues- things you would never thinknof replacing on a Japanese or American car seem to be regular maintenance items on these cars

And compared to your srt6 these are going to feel like old granny cars
 

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'82 500sec euro, '95 Ford F150
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I have both jags and mb, it's all about getting the right model

The 6 cylinder xjs from 94-96 was 100x better than the problem ridden v12s

Same with mb- a 1990 560sec is 200x better than a1993 600sec

But even so , these are old finicky cars and will have issues- things you would never thinknof replacing on a Japanese or American car seem to be regular maintenance items on these cars

And compared to your srt6 these are going to feel like old granny cars
I owned a 96 XJS 6cyl. Last year of the old bodystyle. Bought it w/ 2500 miles wrecked, but non salvage title. After rebuilding it I put close to 30K miles on it. It never gave any problems, as it had all Bosch and japanese electronics instead of the old Lucas nightmare.
Sweet engine and transmission, but never felt like it had the "substance" of the Benz.
 

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2005 Crossfire SRT6, 1986 560SL, 1964 TR4
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Discussion Starter #8
I have both jags and mb, it's all about getting the right model

The 6 cylinder xjs from 94-96 was 100x better than the problem ridden v12s

Same with mb- a 1990 560sec is 200x better than a1993 600sec

But even so , these are old finicky cars and will have issues- things you would never thinknof replacing on a Japanese or American car seem to be regular maintenance items on these cars

And compared to your srt6 these are going to feel like old granny cars
Exactly. I am looking for 6 cyl. and several other cars that are on my radar. The SRT is a hoot to drive, except for the A/T. Why A/T are put into sports cars is beyond me, but the ride of a Jaguar is incredible. I remember driving it home the first time. I had to do a double take, because I thought some bumps had been fixed in the road. That Jag gobbled them right up. I expect the same from this MB chassis.
 

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1986/1990 W126
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These are quite firm i'd say. Meant to be for better stability at speed. You really notice it at high speeds. But at lower speeds the car is feeling the bumps. I havent been in one with the hydro-pneumatic suspension though. I should think thats great.
 

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1966 200 Diesel; 1985 500 SEL (wrecked); 1991 420 SEL; 1979 280E (Home Market); 1993 190E 2.6
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584 Posts
I owned a 96 XJS 6cyl. Last year of the old bodystyle. Bought it w/ 2500 miles wrecked, but non salvage title. After rebuilding it I put close to 30K miles on it. It never gave any problems, as it had all Bosch and japanese electronics instead of the old Lucas nightmare.
Sweet engine and transmission, but never felt like it had the "substance" of the Benz.
After 1988 a Jag isn't a Jag, and some might say that really 1984, after the dissolution of British Leyland and subsequent privitization of the company by the Thatcher government, was the end of Jaguar Cars. Comparing a Ford era Jag to a 126 is not really equitable in my mind. They are apples and oranges.
 

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A 500 or 560SEC should reside in any collection of fine thoroughbreds :thumbsup:
I know ITs blasphemy to say this in this forum, but I much preferred my newer mb. And jags to the 560sec. My w220 s430 drives far better, so does the xj6. Just my opinion from someone who gas owned all of them, the sec feels like an old granny car in comparison
 

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2005 Crossfire SRT6, 1986 560SL, 1964 TR4
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Discussion Starter #13
I know ITs blasphemy to say this in this forum, but I much preferred my newer mb. And jags to the 560sec. My w220 s430 drives far better, so does the xj6. Just my opinion from someone who gas owned all of them, the sec feels like an old granny car in comparison
Interesting. I can't wait to drive one. I will be keeping the Von Zipper (SRT6) to hot rod around in, so the 560 will be used for hitting the town in and road trips.
 

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1986/1990 W126
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Lol. Its the age old Jag/Merc debate. I had loads of Jags and none of them have even touched on the experience the MB gives me. But then almost every Jag i've had has been pretty much on its last legs. Obviously Jags are everywhere here and £100 can get you a runner.
A newer MB will drive better without a doubt. Not as much fun though:)
 

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Wow you can get running jags for 100 pounds in England? I thought I did good in the states getting my 97 xj6 for $368 usd ;)
 

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560SEL 560SEC 300SEL E320 Cab. MB Metris Van / 300TD 300TE 300SDL, 300D, Unimog 406 (Gone)
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A Jag makes a nice lawn ornament.
 

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2008 E320 Bluetec, 1988 560SL totalled unto death). 1997 Dodge Ram 1500, 1983 300CD
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To answer the original question

The 560SEC uses the fairly common M117 aluminum V8 as several other MB, including my 1988 560SL.

Engine and tranny-wise, they are strong and very long lived. Engine weak points (relatively) are the plastic components in the timing chain tensioning and guide area, plastic components feeding the overhead cam oilers and valve stem seals. None of those elements should deter you from that engine. If the car has 100k miles and has not had the plastic stuff replaced, it is time to do so. The plastic parts becom embrittled by heat cycling over time. A piece of broken plastic coming adrift and getting between the chain and sprocket will cause a valve timing jump with disastrous results in this interference type engine. A broken plastic cam oiler fitting will result in an unlubricated cam lobe.

The timing chain itself is a dual row chain and despite the opinion of some is very robust and seldom fails. While replacing the plastic parts, a visual assessment of the chain can be made via measuring stretch. If it is good, leave it alone. A replacement chain will use a master link instead of the factory endless chain thus offering a weak point.

If you get this work done at an independent MB shop it should cost in the $1000 range. Not too bad. There are NO engine lower end issues with the
M117.

At 100k miles, IF there is an oil consumption issue, that problem is usually solved by valve stem seals, not guides. Despite what some say, this engine should not use oil. I went from 1 qt per 700 miles to no measurable use between 6000 mile oil changes in my 560SL with no more than a valve stem seal replacement. Another $1000 job if needed.


Hope this is useful. When I get too old and stiff to struggle in and out of my SL, I am going for an SEC. BTW, my SL is a daily driver getting about 12k miles per year. Buy the SEC and more importantly, drive Hell out of it. You will be rewarded.

Insofar as other parts of the car, the only issues that seem to be prevalent are those associated with vacuum leaks. They are tedious to troubleshoot but inexpensive to repair once you find the problem. At this age, the rubber vacuum line fittings are considering giving up.
 

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2008 E320 Bluetec, 1988 560SL totalled unto death). 1997 Dodge Ram 1500, 1983 300CD
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Oh, and on the topic of Jags

Over the years, I have had a 1953 Mk VII, a 1966 S-Type and a 1983 XJ6. They all had the classic DOHC 6 and all were unreliable except for the engine which was marvelous.

Despite the reliability problems, I wish I had any one of them back especially the '66. The newer Jags and the 12 cylinder models simply don't have the soul.
 

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85 190e/8v & 89 420 SEL
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...an SEC coupe. I'm thinking a 560 for engine performance. I am currently considering a 1986 560 SEC with 64,000. I would like to know if this class has typical issues and what I need to look for. I bought a Jaguar XJS on impulse, then did the research and I could not sell that car fast enough. The issues were great and many from what I read about that particular car. Thanks for your help.
Hello Fellow Texan. There's a 560 SEC down here you might be interested in. I could go have a look at it and snap a bunch of pictures of it for you if you want. I figure this is the one you're talking about?

European Mercedes Benz

Beautiful imported 1986 Mercedez Benz 560 SEC, imported from spain. Power windows, sunroof, powerseats. Beautiful blue color and barely used engine. 64000 miles only a beautiful fully functional classic. For an appointment to show you please call 210-425-7094 or 210-493-5648.


If you need any help, hit me up. :thumbsup:
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Edit: I forgot. There's a 560 SEC here a few miles down the road that's been sitting there for a little while. I think I could get a really good deal on it. Here's some pictures I took of it as I was driving by. I see it once a week at least. I've been meaning to stop and ask them what they plan on doing with it and if they want to sell it. I might do that this week. Hell I could buy it and fix it or buy it and part it out online. It's worth more as a whole though.




 
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