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1988 Mercedes 300E NO RESERVE 106k miles, clean title, great driver, very clean

106,000 MILEAGE
Sedan BODY TYPE
3.0L 2962CC l6 GAS SOHC Naturally Aspirated ENGINE
Automatic TRANSMISSION
Gasoline FUEL

1988 Mercedes-Benz 300-Series Base Sedan 4-Door Description:

Up for NO RESERVE auction is my 1988 Mercedes-Benz 300E (W124 chassis, 3 Liter V6 M103 engine), in Light Ivory (paint code DB623) with Palomino interior, WDBEA30DXJA683925.

Here's the short description:

  • Only 106,000 actual miles, looks great, runs great, NO warning lights, working heat and AC (see notes below)

  • Very clean and original inside and out – original paint still shines, no serious rust (see pics), and the MB Tex interior is in very good condition.

  • Lots of recent maintenance including new tires, distributor cap & rotor, spark plugs, OVP relay, voltage regulator, radiator, spark plug wires, serpentine belt, fuel filter and fuel hoses, tie rod ends and steering damper, AC/heater blower motor and relay, and more (see full list below).

I originally bought this car for my kids and put a lot of money and effort into making sure this was safe and reliable, but then my wife decided to get a new car they got her late-model Volvo. My loss is your gain - the car is 100% road worthy, and I wouldn't hesitate to drive it cross-country.If you are within ~100 miles of Frederick, Maryland, I can deliver the car for a nominal fee.

Open this link for LOTS of additional pictures:
https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipPFCTiu9IqKPDLFTr7dBpI0AkUKfFI2hMPV6IxCn0B9MnlDF3wEJ3dRrggzdhuxEg?key=SWRCUS1UVmNfX2NPdGhwU2d3RWMtYXNPSWF0QmR3

Video of the engine starting and walk-around:
https://youtu.be/Dmf5vrYstDk

If you want to arrange an inspection and/or test drive, you can contact me by email (feb2@cornell.edu) or call me at 301-458-0454 - so I can avoid scammers, please leave a voicemail and I will return your call.

FYI: I think eBay's "AutoCheck" has the count of total owners wrong - looks like they counted a dealer's title transfer. I think I am the 3rd owner, but I can't guarantee that.

Here are the details:

When I bought itin July, the 300E had just 105,000 miles on it – remarkably low mileage for a 30-year-old car. It's in great condition for its age. The original paint has few flaws and shines well. Under-carriage looks very clean (see pics). The MB Tex upholstery is a little sun-faded but has no splits or cracks. No cracks in the dashboard. I refinished the wood trim around the shifter, but the trim around the climate control switches have some minor cracks in the polyurethane finish. The carpet and floor mats are in very good condition for their age – good color and no stains. All the glass is good (no cracks or scratches), and with the exception of the passenger-side rear, all the power windows work. Sunroof also works.

In addition to getting new tires/wheel alignment and catching up on regular maintenance (oil change, new fuel filter, new serpentine belt, new spark plugs), I also had to take care of some problems typical to a W124 of this age:

  • new overvoltage protection (OVP) relay and voltage regulator

  • new distributor cap, rotor, and suppression plate

  • new spark plug wires

  • new radiator (inc. coolant flush and re-fill)

  • new crank shaft seal

  • new inner & outer tie rods and steering damper

  • new AC/Heater blower motor and relay

  • new rubber fuel lines (both tank-to-pump and fuel filter-to-hardline)

I have receipts for all of the above (about $900 in total), along with some receipts from the prior owners, including the original Mercedes maintenance book and other documents (see pics).

The full-size spare has never been out of the trunk and it still has the original (30-year-old) Continental tire mounted. While the tire looks fine and holds air, this should be replaced due to its age. I am including an extra good used tire with the car.

Issues:

The car starts, runs, and drives well, but that said it is 30-years-old and has a few minor issues.

  • No structural rust, but there are 3 small dents/scratches that have just started to rust (see the walk-around video).

  • There is a dent in the rocker panel just behind the driver's side front wheel – I think someone (not me!) tried to jack the car in the wrong spot. It's in an inconspicuous spot, so it doesn't look too bad.

  • The original AC system (still using r12 refrigerant) blows cold, but there appears to be a slow leak in the compressor. I added 1 can (14 oz) to top it off and it's been working fine for a month, but I don't think this will hold indefinitely. You can either recharge when needed, or replace the compressor and upgrade to r134a.

  • The original Becker AM/FM/Cassette head unit's radio works, but the cassette function works only intermittently. The previous owner had been using a cassette adapter(included)for AUX input - sometimes it works, sometime not. Also, the Hirschmann electric radio antenna has been replaced with a manual retractable antenna.

  • The rear passenger-side window does not work (stuck in up position). Could be a bad switch/connection or bad window regulator. All other power windows and the sunroof work.

Here are a few problems this car does not have, and some things to consider if you are looking for a Mercedes from the 1980s/90s :
  • 1988 was one of the last years Mercedes used single-stage paint. 2-stage paint (base + clear coat) looks great while it lasts, but lots of Mercedes from the 1990s have that awful cloudy/peeling clear coat - this car does NOT.
  • From 1992-97, Mercedes used a "recyclable/biodegradable" wiring harness that (surprise!) degrades with age. The wiring harness can cost $1500 or more (parts only) to replace. This 1988 model does NOT have that problem.

Conditions of Sale:

  • Within 24 hours of auction close, the winning bidder is required to make a $500 deposit via PayPal.

  • Have your financing in order prior to bidding! The winning bidder must pay the balance due in cash or by wire transfer within 7 days of the auction close and prior to taking possession of the car.

  • The winning bidder must pick up the car within 20 days of the auction close – it's stored in my home garage and I need the space! If you do not pick up the car within 20 days, I may have to store the car off-site and reserve the right to charged $30 per day for storage.

  • If you need to ship the car, I suggest you check eBay's link to uShip shipping brokers. I will assist in shipping by making myself available when the car is picked up. If you are within about 100 miles of Frederick, Maryland, I can deliver the car for a nominal fee. Also, check with shippers for “terminal-to-terminal” service – this is usually much cheaper than door-to-door shipping, and there are several terminals in DC/Baltimore/Northern Virginia that are close by.

Disclaimer:

I have made every effort to accurately represent the condition of the car, but that said this is a 30-year-old car. I encourage you to come see and test drive the car and/or arrange for a pre-purchase inspection. I guarantee that I hold a clean Maryland title for the car with no lean, but other than that, there is no warranty, expressed or implied.

On Oct-03-18 at 11:27:17 PDT, seller added the following information:

I got a question about rust and dings on the paint, so I have added several close-up pictures.
On closer inspection, there is really only one spot on the paint showing rust - this is below the driver's side tail light, and is less than 1/2 inch across:
The other 2 spots are scratches but not showing any rust.1st is on the driver's side rear fender:

2nd is a 3-inch scratch on the lower part of the front passenger side door:

Here's a close-up of the dent in the rocker panel, just behind the driver's side front wheel (no signs of rust):
See the Google Photos album for lots of pictures of the undercarriage - there is some surface rust (on the differential, for example), but NO structure rust: https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipPFCTiu9IqKPDLFTr7dBpI0AkUKfFI2hMPV6IxCn0B9MnlDF3wEJ3dRrggzdhuxEg?key=SWRCUS1UVmNfX2NPdGhwU2d3RWMtYXNPSWF0QmR3

On Oct-05-18 at 06:09:37 PDT, seller added the following information:

Links to the "bad spots" pictures appear to be broken, but you can still see them if you open the Google Photos album and scroll to the bottom.

Features:

Item location:Ijamsville, Maryland, United States
VIN:WDBEA30DXJA683925
Year:1988
Mileage:106,000
Make:Mercedes-Benz
Model:300-Series
SubModel:300E
Type:Sedan
Trim:Base Sedan 4-Door
Color:Light Ivory
Interior color:Palomino
Engine:3.0L 2962CC l6 GAS SOHC Naturally Aspirated
Cylinders:6
Fuel:Gasoline
Transmission:Automatic
Drive type:RWD
Vehicle Title:Clear