Better off in a BMW?

5907

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I'm really disappointed by how slow my E280 (w124) has turned out to be; the Auto box requires constant manual intervention to get any acceleration out of the car, and it just completely lacks power. It's possibly the slowest car I have ever driven. I shudder to think how slow an E220 would be!

It's a very comfortable and good looking car, and the engine is quiet and smooth, but it has no power at all, it's very disappointing. It will get to 100mph, but only if you're patient, making it a chore to drive on the motorway. My last 3.0 24v W124 had no such performance issues.

I've heard that the equivalent BMWs are often quicker than the Mercedes counterpart, maybe a mid-90s 528i or 530i would have more power?

I'm not a quick driver, but I like to be able to climb hills without holding traffic up, and to be able to get past lorries on the motorway.

I have a 300-mile drive to the North coming up soon, and I'm dreading it in this gutless car.
 
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Alex M Grieve

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B Class d200 Sport Premium Plus (66)
I'm really disappointed by how slow my E280 (w124) has turned out to be; the Auto box requires constant manual intervention to get any acceleration out of the car, and it just completely lacks power. It's possibly the slowest car I have ever driven. I shudder to think how slow an E220 would be!

It's a very comfortable and good looking car, and the engine is quiet and smooth, but it has no power at all, it's very disappointing. It will get to 100mph, but only if you're patient, making it a chore to drive on the motorway. My last 3.0 24v W124 had no such performance issues.

I've heard that the equivalent BMWs are often quicker than the Mercedes counterpart, maybe a mid-90s 528i or 530i would have more power?

I'm not a quick driver, but I like to be able to climb hills without holding traffic up, and to be able to get past lorries on the motorway.

I have a 300-mile drive to the North coming up soon, and I'm dreading it in this gutless car.

I am sure there must be a fault here. I remember driving in convoy with a friend in a W 124 220 when I had a Toyota Camry V6 - and that is a quick car. We travelled from Hampshire to the Hague and back, both cars 4 up plus luggage, and he kept up an excellent speed throughout.

Better brains than mine will no doubt offer views, but I am sure your 280 should hit 100 mph effortlessly.

It will be good to hear if you detect a problem and what difference it made.
 
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5907

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I am sure there must be a fault here. I remember driving in convoy with a friend in a W 124 220 when I had a Toyota Camry V6 - and that is a quick car. We travelled from Hampshire to the Hague and back, both cars 4 up plus luggage, and he kept up an excellent speed throughout.

Better brains than mine will no doubt offer views, but I am sure your 280 should hit 100 mph effortlessly.

It will be good to hear if you detect a problem and what difference it made.

Well, Lambda & MAF have both been replaced recently, and it's just had a full engine service. It's also running on 97RON Super Unleaded.

It makes sense to be honest; 190hp is not a lot in a heavy automatic like the W124.
 

mikestrivens

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I had a W124 280te before I part exchanged it for the 320 version. Certainly the 320 is a much faster and more nimble car but the 280 was no slouch either. I regularly took it across Germany well in excess of 125 mph and plenty of gutsy acceleration, with kick down, it was never a problem overtaking . It sounds like there is something wrong with your car.
 

philharve

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Something wrong!

Well, Lambda & MAF have both been replaced recently, and it's just had a full engine service. It's also running on 97RON Super Unleaded.

It makes sense to be honest; 190hp is not a lot in a heavy automatic like the W124.

Hi 5907

My C230K has a mere 193 horsepower, about the same performance as your 2.8L, and it will climb most hills with enthusiasm. If the hill is long enough, 100+mph is easily possible in around 10 seconds. It's even faster on the flat.

Like Alex, I suspect your E280 has some kind of problem. I use VPower in my tank and this keeps the engine in tip-top condition.

Have patience because I suspect another member will provide you with a solution.

REGARDS

Phil
 
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5907

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Hi 5907

My C230K has a mere 193 horsepower, about the same performance as your 2.8L, and it will climb most hills with enthusiasm. If the hill is long enough, 100+mph is easily possible in around 10 seconds. It's even faster on the flat.

Like Alex, I suspect your E280 has some kind of problem. I use VPower in my tank and this keeps the engine in tip-top condition.

Have patience because I suspect another member will provide you with a solution.

REGARDS

Phil

Thanks; but you have a supercharged engine in a much lighter and more modern car, it isn't surprising that it's quick.

I guess I just underestimated how noticeable the drop from 217hp to 190hp would be. I guess I'll just drive this one until it breaks (which could be a long time given it's current condition) then get something more powerful.
 
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5907

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The only possibility of a fault could be the Lambda sensor; When I had it changed, I fitted a new unbranded universal sensor rather than a Bosch / Mercedes one.

It still drives much better with the new sensor and the error code has gone. Not sure if it could still be casuing low power though.
 

Parrot of Doom

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Sorry - I meant to say 20 - 25 seconds. It takes about 10 seconds to reach 60mph up a steep hill.

REGARDS

Phil

That isn't a bad time for such an old (sorry no offence but mine is old too) motor. Mine will do 0-60 in about 9 seconds and go right up to 135mph without any problems.

The nice thing about a large engine like that isn't the acceleration, its the ease with which it covers long distances.

Maybe it doesn't have the bhp it once did. A rolling road would prove that, but would it be worth it...
 

philharve

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E280 performance

Thanks; but you have a supercharged engine in a much lighter and more modern car, it isn't surprising that it's quick.

I guess I just underestimated how noticeable the drop from 217hp to 190hp would be. I guess I'll just drive this one until it breaks (which could be a long time given it's current condition) then get something more powerful.

Hi 5907

Yes, 27hp is certainly a noticeable difference on the road. I find it difficult to believe you have difficulty reaching 100mph, not that you would ever want to, on a motorway. Would you care to suggest some timings so that other members can judge how accelerative your E280 is?

Lambda sensor of unspecified origin might be the cause.

REGARDS

Phil
 

S80

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Well, an Autocar road test (December '92) reported the 280E as 0-60mph in 8.1s and 0-100mph in 22.1s.

Not sportscar performance levels, but hardly 'gutless' :eek:

Weighed in at 1471kg - the same as a 2005 VW Golf 1.9TDi automatic:shock:
 

Rory

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I guess I just underestimated how noticeable the drop from 217hp to 190hp would be. I guess I'll just drive this one until it breaks (which could be a long time given it's current condition) then get something more powerful.

I know they were wrecks, but I remember a TopGear program where they bought some older cars and checked them on rolling roads and they were all waaay down on their orginal power ratings.

It's one of the wierd things with turbo diesels - they often dyno at higher than the stated power output.
 

philharve

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C230K performance

That isn't a bad time for such an old (sorry no offence but mine is old too) motor. Mine will do 0-60 in about 9 seconds and go right up to 135mph without any problems.

The nice thing about a large engine like that isn't the acceleration, its the ease with which it covers long distances.

Maybe it doesn't have the bhp it once did. A rolling road would prove that, but would it be worth it...

Hi Parrot of Doom

Yes, I can identify with these figures. I've never had the nerve to try to drive it to the limit. I value the mid-range acceleration more than the top speed.

I agree with you suggestion that the E280 may be down on BHP if it has covered lots of miles.

REGARDs

Phil
 

philharve

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E280 performance

Well, an Autocar road test (December '92) reported the 280E as 0-60mph in 8.1s and 0-100mph in 22.1s.

Not sportscar performance levels, but hardly 'gutless' :eek:

Weighed in at 1471kg - the same as a 2005 VW Golf 1.9TDi automatic:shock:

Hi S80

That's what I figured. Not a road burner but perfectly respectable. I'm now wondering if the BHP is down due to a worn engine?

REGARDS

Phil
 

philharve

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Supercars with worn engines

I know they were wrecks, but I remember a TopGear program where they bought some older cars and checked them on rolling roads and they were all waaay down on their orginal power ratings.

It's one of the wierd things with turbo diesels - they often dyno at higher than the stated power output.

Hi Rory

I saw that TopGear programme and the 3 presenters were driving one-time supercars that gradually fell to bits during the making of the programme. I think only one supercar survived all the tasks and I think that might have been driven by James May.

I remember the rolling road tests and one of the supercars had lost of the order on 100bhp. It could barely accelerate. I think this was Jeremy Clarkson's chosen set of wheels.

All 3 examples were basket cases. No, I mean the supercars, not the presenters. But come to think of it ...

REGARDS

Phil
 

iben

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BMW's are generally quicker than Mercs and usually handle better, they are also very well built, but how many old ones do you see on the roads compared with Merc and Volvos. Not many and thats because the majority of them have had the arse raged out of them since day one as company cars driven by suited idiots who should know better.
Try my old W124 300TD, now thats gutless, but you just stick it in drive and let it take you to where you want to go - Radio on, nice, calm and relaxed.
 

turnipsock

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My 320CE leaves BMW's 320 standing!

The only problems I have with my car, at 135mph, is the police and the wind noise from the open sun roof.
 

stumpy

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I would check that you don't have an air leak at the unit in the middle of the inlet manifold. Mine did and felt very flat. Put the hose back on and it is fine again. Also, make sure you have the gearbox in S mode as that makes a big difference. As for figures - I had a race from the lights with an E46 330Ci and it was neck and neck all the way. In fact it seemed as though he was the one having to stir the box. We have a 530 and I think my 280 is a tad nippier in certain circumstances. BMW engines are quite peaky and low on torque.

In short, I'd say yours is a bit sick. Why not try another car for a comparison?
 
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PanzerMcGrory

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You claim not to be a fast driver but talk about how long it takes to get to 100mph :confused:
This old girl is not getting any younger so give her a break or trade her in for something younger and fitter,
Im still talking about cars arnt i ;);)
 

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