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After years of basically being too poor to own anything decent im finally able to get my benz i've wanted since childhood, its a black 2002 s500 with light gray leather and wood wheel and wood shifter. You guys seem very knowledgeable and any info would help.


My first question is about the tires. I want to put wheels on it that will look just right. I like the dropped look where the car sits right on top of the rims- could i get something similar by just putting 20" or 22" wheels on it? Also, how easy is it too drop a car yourself? Beyond changing tires and oil i know absolutley nothing about cars. How much does it usually cost to allow a shop to do the job right?

Also, any recommendations on cleaning tips would be appreciated ie., wax , soap.

Suggestions for any aftermarket modifications would be nice as well.

I would also love to see pictures of anyones 500.

Thanks in advance guys
 

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The 2002s are out of warranty so you really should consider whether you have the money to own this car. Most S cars have airmatic issues at some point.

C
 

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I have had tons of airmatic issues, last time cost about 1800, my suggestion dont go any bigger than 19" wheels, if you want it lowered, kleemann makes a module that can adjust air ride settings, but after a few costly experiences with air ride, id suggest no bigger than 19" and leaving it alone
 

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95 E320 (Sold!), 06 ML350, 03 S430, 00 Pontiac Formula WS6
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Congratulations - these are amazing cars....While I have an 03 S430 - I have owned several MBs and would pass on a few comments -

-- Changing out wheels is pretty common (I would stay away from anything larger than 19 or 20) but I would be very cautious about attempting to lower the car yourself or do anything to the suspension. These cars are just so over engineered that even the slightest change can cause problems. As an example - in the E320 I used to own - I could tell from the way the car was driving whether one of the front tires needed just a few pounds of air. It was all that sensitive and finely engineered.

-- You have to be really cautious when it comes to working on these cars yourself. I have a Pontiac WS6 Formula and I have done all sorts of mods to it (suspension, exhaust, audio, etc). Some of the projects I have done, I have gotten in a little over my head, but the parts are cheap and Napa is right up the street, so I always figure it out. I don't have a desire to do the same to either my S or my wife's M. While I'm sure with some homework I could get smart on how the car is put together - the consequences of mistakes can lead to very expensive parts that have to be ordered from Germany.

-- The service (A and B service which is how you do routine maintenance in the MB world) can be expensive. A few hundred for an A (which is more or less an oil change) and more for a B. You can look around for a good independent shop that works on German cars and often get better service at a lower price than at the dealer - but be prepared to spend some money on routine maintenance and if something breaks along the way - be prepared to spend even more. They are awesome cars and a joy to own - but unfortunately - they can also be expensive to own - so make sure you take that into consideration when you make your purchase. I would never discourage anyone from buying one - but I would encourage them to do some research around these costs (as it appears you are doing) so they don't have regrets. Good luck with your purchase.
 
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