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1983 300 D turbo
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Discussion Starter #1
I am looking to buy an SL, most likely from the late 70's to the late 80's. I just like this body style, it is so classic. I am seeking your expertise in steering me to the proper car. From what I have gather in this forum so far is the 280 is economical to operate (fuel & parts), but the 500 is more desirable, and the 380 had some type of engine problem, and most folks avoid them.

I actually found an 83 380 sl with a little over 80,000 miles, very clean, with the hard top. Very few documents as far as maintenance goes, sadly. They want about $10,000 for the car, and the car is about 8 hours from my home.

One of my concerns is I am 6'-5", will I fit. I do not really care about speed as I drive a 300d. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Thank you & Happy Motoring

Lancer
 

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83 Astral Silver 280 SL
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They are pretty roomy, I wouldn't worry about the fit. The 380 you are looking at is over-priced.
 

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1983 300 D turbo
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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for your reply. In your opinion, what is the best sl,that 380, 450, 500 or some other one, and why?
 

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2017 Police Interceptor Utility, 2017 Police Interceptor Sedan
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lancer - 3/30/2005 8:20 PM

Thank you for your reply. In your opinion, what is the best sl,that 380, 450, 500 or some other one, and why?
Go with a 560SL. It's the definitive model of the R107 body style. By the time it came out, whatever could go wrong with the design did and got fixed. That and I have one
 

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78 280sl,65 Mustang Fastback, 05 Chaparral 220 Ssi
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I'd go with the 500. It's difficult to find a 280, as it would be a grey market car. But they're out there. I found one.

Also, I'm 6'3", and fit in the car just fine.

Good Luck,
Brian
 

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A bunch o of 'em - see signautre
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My $.02:

They are all a hoot to drive when they're in good shape...

"Good shape" are key words. Everybody here will strongly advise doing some homework. These are not NEW cars and prior maintenance determines whether or not you have one and keep your mistress or give her up to get and keep the SL in shape.

Do a lot of exploring here, at sl107(.com) and oursl(.com). Leave your heart at home when you go look at candidates too... there are enough available in varying conditions to choose the correct one to suit your plan.

Kevin
 

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1986 500SL
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I am partial, but with that said, a full euro 500SL with small bumpers and euro headlights is the most distinctive of the lot. Original look and fun to drive. They are out there, you just have to be persistent and patient in your search. There are 4 on Ebay right now.
 

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83 Astral Silver 280 SL
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Well, here's the big difference in Euros - my 280SL has the cute bumpers and headlights, in fact if you changed the trunk badge you couldn't tell it from a 500SL, and it has one added benefit - it gets 24 MPG.
 

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86 420 sel,
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162 Posts
IF YOU ARE LOOKING FOR A CAR THAT YOU CAN DRIVE EVERY DAY, I WILL GO FOR A 560, THERE ARE TOO MANY THINGS GOING WRONG W/ 450`S & 380`S. ALSO 380 BEFORE 84 HAS SINGEL ROW TIMING CHAIN, SO YOU HAVE TO BE ON TOP OF THE MAINTENANCE, UNLESS YOU WANT TO BUY A NEW ENGINE. A GOOD 560 SHOULD THESE DAYS BE FOUND FOR AROUND $14-16K, W/ GOOD RECORDS. (KEY WORD)[;)]
I GOT MINE LAST YEAR, AND I HAVE ALL THE RECORDS ON IT. LAST 3 YEARS IT WAS TOTALY GONE THRUE, AND ALL IT NEED IS A PAINT JOB. GOOD LUCK W/ YOUR BUY OF THE ULTIMATE DRIVING MACHINE
 

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83 Astral Silver 280 SL
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ljmauricio - 4/13/2005 5:44 PM

Are we buying these cars for the gas mileage?
It's not as fast as a 500, but it isn't slow either. At 51, my days of wanting the fastest car on the block are over. I want something that is reliable, economical to operate, and still offers enough performance to have some fun when I want to. The 280SL fits the bill nicely. Not only that, as I mentioned before this is the third 280 series car I have owned, and I just wanted one I could preserve in good condition now that they no longer make them. I must say that at $2.50 a gallon and climbing for premimum, a 500 has got to be one expensive proposition these days.
 

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93 400E
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I have an 85 380 SL for sale new top ,paint,Timing chain and valve job ,everything works exc cruise control contact me at [email protected],I fixed it up for my wife last winter and found a 560SL for a good price ,I have about $8500 in it ,I'd like $10K
 

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83 Astral Silver 280 SL
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fjbertrand - 4/17/2005 11:16 PM

280 and 380 use high test, not regular, correct?
Yes, but I've seen no difference in running Plus. Lately I've started using a 1/2 & 1/2 mix of regular and hi-test after a friend of mine who works at a refinery here in Houston told me that the chemicals used in hi-test will also raise the octane of regular gas if it is mixed with it. Ever since I started doing it, it seems I am getting better mileage for some reason as well, and I have yet to here any ping or knock. Put the hi-test in first, then the regular.
 

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Depends on the day!
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Just an FYI, but the 560 has it's own seats that are thicker then the other 107 models. I'm 6'2 and it's a bit tight in there (185lbs). The earlier SL's give you more room..so yes, ideally a 500SL would be the way to go. The 380's (US, euro is a screamer) are woefully slow.

Jonathan
 
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