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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys new to the Benz forums and Benz world but not car in general. Biding my time to buy the exact w124 with m104 and interior that I want with the plans to manual swap it. Now all the info i can find only suggest a few transmissions 5 speed and some rare 6 speed 716.663. So why no mention of the identical looking 716.652? Its a 6 speed and bolted up behind massive vans with Torqy diesels so id say it could take some abuse. Not to mention they made heaps of them and are super easy to find. Cheers and thanks for the help in advance.

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The original, manual 300-24s were fitted with the Getrag "dogleg" gearbox. Not sure of the part number but someone'll know. Pretty rare these days so like to cost a lot.

RayH
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Yeah I've seen that posted around as well and suspect that has the same part number as the slk 6 speed .663 but could be very wrong. Ill find a pic of each and post it as well. From ehat I can see it might have a dual cable system like Hondas but i could be wrong.


The top is 716.663 and the bottom is the vito 716.652
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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
From further digging it looks like it uses the same single shaft system at the top too just adapted for 2 shifter cables on the side. The big arm at the top does front to back movement and the other twists left and right. Might still have all the mounts for the .663 shifter. Ill have to find a cheap one and do some digging. The cable shifter might even fit the 124s.
 

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Why not just buy a W124 that already has the manual trans factory installed, if row it yourself shifting is your thing???
 

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Discussion Starter #6
There are none here mate (Australia) closest I've seen are some c180s/200s that are 5/6 speed.

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You're not missing out on anything. The auto is the better pick

MB manual trannies suck, especially from this generation. If it has to be a manual, buy a BMW
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Im a manual guy through and through but i think there is potential. I like older mb cars like the 124s its different. starting to see the lack of strength for sure after more research and definitely looking at mating one of our own much stronger 5 speeds. Rennsport make a custom single mass that i might have to get especially with my future power goals in mind. Does anyone have bellhousing to shifter lengths?

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The gearboxes from the W124 generation are agricultural at best. Case in point, the E30 BMW M3 and W201 Cossie share the same Getrag manual trans. The BMW is as sweet as a nut, the MB is numb, and feels like me after a root canal at the dentist.

Not convinced? Try a Mazda MX-5 1st gen from the same era as the W124. The MB manual box is just woeful.

If you're keen on having a thoroughly enjoyable manual, buy a BMW like a E39 5 series.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Yeah the 5 speed i spoke of is neither mb or bmw its actually an odd Toyota made one thats basically the big brother to the r154. We have stupid amounts of these here and they have been seen holding 800+ hp wheel from v8s. The mb m104 engine is super stout and with just a few mods can make some serious power not to mention they sound great. Plus the 124s chassis is awesome and looks good so why not make something work. Always loved the look of a low w124

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Don't know if a Jap box has ever been fitted to a W124. I do remember reading about somebody with a 500E had a manual conversion done using the Getrag manual box from a M5 V8 car.

FWIW, I have a slightly tuned Honda Accord diesel (Euro Accord in Australia) which was sold here in Europe as manual or automatic. The automatic is bulletproof, while the manual is prone to snap ring failure on the input shaft along with a dualmass flywheel that rattles like a [email protected] after about 100K on the clock. And the best part is that a new flywheel is "only" 1500 Euros. No such issues with the auto. Just sayin'
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Definitely haha i dont doubt the toughness. The 722 autos in the 124s can be seriously tricked up to take over 1000hp no problem. Im aware there capable but sorry id rather shift myself and really enjoy the car. Plus i might wanna take it to a drift day who knows. Nothing against autos just really not my thing.
And yeah i havent found anything much about none mb boxes mated up but the bellhousings are very similar so it shouldn't be too hard. I've attached pics bellow of the 716.663(top) vs the ma5(bottom)

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Then you should start searching for a breakers yard with a BMW manual trans V8 OR pave your own way and see what comes of it.

FWIW, the 722.3, 722.4/5 in the W124 definitely cannot take big power. The 722.3 on my V12 W140s have kevlar internals (as fitted from the factory) to keep the box alive. Really big power requires a 722.6 5 speed, which is way stronger than the newer 722.9 7 speed box.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Yeah it definitely could have been that .6 box I was thinking of I'm new to the mb world. Yeah I'm sure I'll figure something out. Does the bmw 6 speed have much of an upgrade path as far as internals? Ive heard they have a similar cap of about 800 wheel like the r155/ma5 I'm looking at. And do you know of anyone with bellhousing to shifter measurement?

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IIRC, the BMW trans (as used in the E39 V8 M5) is the Getrag 420G and is good for up to around 500Nm of pull. The manual box from the 540i E39 is the same as the M5.

The 6 cylinder BMW also used this trans BUT the bellhousing pattern is different and is not designed to handle the torque of the V8 box.

The weak point on these manuals is the internal shift linkages when pushed to the max torque ratings. The internals are not available as separate spare parts, only complete boxes. Just something you should be aware of
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Yeah thanks heaps for pointing me in that direction. After plenty more digging I actually found that the best tranny to use from the bmw side is called the g6s 53dz. According to sweeds this this in factory form is good for 1500nm! 6 speed too with great ratios so this could be the transmission of choice if all goes well.

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Sbaert is full of shit as usual. He's never actually driven a manual MB, he's just regurgetating the BS he read somewhere. The w124/w201 5 speeds (there were 3) are excellent if properly maintained. Most of the ones you find on the road today have never had the shifter bushings replaced. Swap out the bushings and give one a try. It makes the ancient e30 look pathetic.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Haha yeah thats fair. I think given my power goals tho its definitely reasonable to assume they wont hold up very long if at all. I found someone who makes gs6 53dz 6 speed conversions but specifically for om60x engines. now iirc are the bellhousing pattern for m10x and om60x are the same are they not?

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While it's no Miata neither is the 722.4 auto a Ferrari DCT. Even an old rubbery 5spd is better than a shitty old vac/hydro controlled auto in any situation other than stop-go traffic. A guy who owns an e39 M5 rowed through the gears in my car and asked how I got it to feel so tight and direct. It's because I rebuilt the shifter and replaced all the worn rubber bushings with delrin.

Before/After



 

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Discussion Starter #20
Awesome pics man and cheers. The only thing i have to disagree with is the stop and go thing. Ive driven plenty of different manuals through peak hour traffic here. Stop and go only sucks for those who cant really drive properly I never had an issue and loved it all the same.
 
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