Mercedes-Benz Forum banner

1 - 20 of 136 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,401 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I just totalled up all my repair receipts and thought it might be helpful for those considering purchasing an older benz. Since I purchased the TE in Feb of 2004 I have paid my indy $11,741 for various repairs. Most were done early in the process as I purchased the car for $3200 without records but after having done a PPI which allowed me to knock $3000 off the asking price. Major repairs include head gasket ($1200), trans rebuild ($1600) , fuel pumps, new pushbutton unit, water pump. We have put 35,000 miles on the car during this time. About 40 cents per mile driven. I have no regrets about the purchase but had I to do it over again I probably would have looked for a newer TE with about 150,000 miles instead of the 209k it had when we bought it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,982 Posts
I've spent over 10K in the past 3 1/2 years but drove 72K miles for a total of 14 cents a mile (in repair costs alone). Don't anticipate many more expensive repairs (although tranny and evaporator are original).

Sergio
'95 E320 187K miles
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29,576 Posts
With the big ticket items that you list hitting around $4K or so, what else have you had done in two years that ran that up to almost $12K? They don't have pole dancing at your service center do they?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,401 Posts
Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
new 02 sensor, reseal power steering box, motor mounts, radiator, thermostat, liftgate shocks, one rear wheel bearing, a/c service, 3 window lifters, new air cells, left tail light assembly, 10 oil changes, timing chain, 4 brake pads + one sensor, EHA fuel distributor. Sadly no pole dancing. This is Utah after all.

By the way, labor rate is $75 per hour.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,492 Posts
mine has come up to about $3000 in 3 years and some. just needed a cylinder head rebuild. no real issues other than maintenance. only the waterpump which i did myself and a hole in the exhaust.

ive put an easy 50000 on it in the three years but i cant be too sure since my odometer is broken. my commute is 30 miles a day to work. school is a further 40 miles butive only done one semester with this car. my cousin commuted from half moon bay to san francisco for 6 months (40 miles each way) and i play rugby which entails travelling to away games (las vegas, santa barbara, san diego etc) half the season and all the rugby tournaments in summer (san diego, san luis obispo, vegas, santa barbara.) my mom lives in phoenix and ive gone there at least 5 times, plus further up north to arizona to see a friend in flagstaff. ive driven to colorado to hang with friends.

im pleased as punch with my purchase. my next (modern) car will be a 124. or an E30 M3. (i prefer oldies so id probably buy another BMW 2002 but an early round taillight one.) im buying a BMW R1200GS adventure later this year though. definitely my next vehicle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
100 Posts
noob's..
i've had my 300e for about 6 years.. spent around $2500.. oil changes done myself, major fixes done myself using new parts. mercedes repairs are 90% mental, and 10% physical. just try!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
34 Posts
I am with dababor on this one. Just like any other older car, it will be expensive to operate if you take it to a service center for every little hiccup. Unless you have a bunch of money you don't mind spending and have a thing for 15 plus year old cars, then by all means don't ever pop the hood yourself!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
953 Posts
" $ 2000 a year average was a standard " if you let the dealer do the "Normal work ". This is over say 10 -12 yrs , that's why you find a lot of 2-3 yr old Benz cars on the dealers lot they are perfect the first 5 yrs with the warranty .

My neighbor has an 05 E-320 that has had engine sensor problems , transmission shift -leak - issues they replaced it , this was all free with the warranty . Just the towing , loss of use is irritating .

My 94 E-320 needs a tranny in a while , but most of my DIY work about $1500 -2000 over 5 yrs it had 87K when I bought it with New paint - new wiring harness.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
676 Posts
i think with the right driver and the right parts you shouldnt have to do more then 500 dollars worth of work... in a year... per car.

if your putting more then that down for repairs... find a new car... and dealers rob you and so do independents! thats what i've learned even for my S class and any other car i change brakes, air filters, oil, spark plugs, rad fluid, etc... at my own house. not because i am cheap or i love getting dirty... i just dont trust to many people with the car. because when i do it I DO IT RIGHT.

the harness and head gasket was replaced with the previous owner... trans = original and 108, ooo miles on the odometer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
310 Posts
I agree with omairtheman. There are so many things you can do yourself on these cars. I dropped in a new radiator in about 45 minutes. Cost $125 for the part. Dealer price for job $650. I guess I have been lucky- I have never had to put a head gasket in any of my 3 W124's. Overall repair costs have been quite reasonable. I do brakes and oil changes myself.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
953 Posts
Even a do it yourself owner can take a hit on parts - $280 mass air flow sensor - $300 - 400 air pump for smog - $200 stock muffler . But yes its much cheaper than than having the dealer do it and some can be found a junk yards . I never bought a used muffler or O2 sensor .

Cars seem to hit spots in their lives 100K - 150K - 250 K miles , where you throw money at them like your building a camp fire with $20 bills . In between its good .
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
120 Posts
I've owned a 300SEL (W126) and my mother has owned her 300E (W124) for three years or more now. My 300SEL had 164k on it, now has 152k. Her 300E had 120k on it, now has 165k on it. Ignoring tires, brakes, and oil changes, spark plugs, wires, ignition cap and rotors, since they are all regular maintenence, my total 3 year cost of ownership on both cars is: $0. Neither car, over the past three years and combined 133,000 miles of driving, has ever needed anything besides regular maintanence. I've been extremely lucky - and I consider these the best, most reliable, cheapest to drive cars I've ever owned in my life.

-KPY.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,401 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
I think you mean you now have 252k on your sel, not 152.

And you have been lucky. My TE has been a learning experience but in going through my repair statements yesterday we haven't had it in the shop since march and before that sept of 2006 so hopefully we have hit the sweet spot for a while.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
128 Posts
I've spent rather a lot on parts and servicing over the past couple of years, since buying my elderly father's '86 300E. I've put money into detailing the interior and exterior and generally making it nice again, so that it is good enough to make up the numbers at Club Concours, etc., but nowhere near good enough to win. I don't clean under wheel arches... I have obviously also put money into mechanical reconditioning, along with scheduled servicing and maintenance. I know it makes little cold economic sense, but when all is spent and done I have a handsome, elegant car, the appearance and styling of which belies its age. Its performance is still quite respectable as well. There are those who would dismiss it as just an old Mercedes, but they are possibly the same people who would condemn a building for being old without knowing it was by Frank Lloyd Wright or Marcel Breuer. I wear many 'old' clothes which, because they were of high quality, are still smart, comfortable, and (so I'm occasionally told) fairly impressive.

How much would you have to pay for a new car which has the same amount of 'presence' and substance as a W124, or any other M-B of a certain age? Also, if you drive an older M-B there is a stronger chance that you might actually own the thing, rather than swanning about in something acquired with other peoples' money.

Just my personal slant on things.

Enjoy those cars, everyone.

Peter Webb
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
505 Posts
Sure, old cars can be expensive.

Hello, Alex.

Close to $4,000 per year seems to be the high end in this thread, with near-zero being the low-end winner. Most folks will land somewhere in the middle. The idea that a 12 to 20 year-old luxury car should be sensible, cost-efficient transportation is probably not something most people here would agree with. Personally, I like driving a unique car and don't mind paying the extra costs that will certainly come with it one of these days. So far, I haven't done anything but normal maintenance items, so I'm near the low end of ownership costs after about 30 months and 48,000 miles (87,000 total).

Cheers,

Dave
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
243 Posts
In the last year.

Front Brake Pads (?)
Rear Multilink Suspension 700 (Half remembering that one)
Expansion Valve + Refill & Dye 600

I drove 20,000 miles in that period. So perhaps $1,500/20,000 Miles... which comes to 8 cents a mile.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
well im a noob to MB motoring, however im no noob to working on cars. I have had my 300ce for about 6 months and so far all i have done to it is a seal under the distributor, a battery and alternator totaling about 500 dollars (200 was the battery) I went with a optima mounted in the trunk in addition to my other battery. upgrade alternator for more subwoofer amp power and my seal was just leaking LOL. I say if you have the tools then use them. I am a professional automotive technician and for me to pay a shop to fix my car would be taboo. not to mention the cost of parts on these cars alone could break the bank of the average Joe Q public. my car needs a windscreen, dealer COST $600+labor. Installed by aftermarket (Glassmasters) $145. Spark plug wires: dealer $325+$150 labor, DIY $125... these are simple repairs, if your paying to have them done please come see me, ill be happy to take your money....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
182 Posts
Haven't totalled it up accurately but I have less than $1000 in repairs and only paid $2000 for the car 20 months ago. I've put on 22k miles since then.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,115 Posts
I think the real 'value' in this series is the look & the drive. I don't like the newer series look anywhere near as much as this one. Show me a beautifully kept, dark 500E and it takes my breath away. It's difficult for me to get excited about cars anymore since they basically became generic in appearance, due to engineer's CAD programs and finding the best 'economy ' shape etc. Used to be you molded a design out of clay and then mocked up a larger design in clay. Working on a design with your hands and feeling the lines of the car itself as you go, is WAY different than CAD for economy/bottom line shapes. That's why many cars were actually artwork.

I think few here would argue with the notion that there are better used cars out there for the practical sort.....but they're not the look & the drive of a w124 MB. But agreed, the real fun and satisfaction of owning these cars for many of us, is succeeding in good repairs ourselves.:thumbsup:

Kevin
 
1 - 20 of 136 Posts
Top