My experience of the Restoration & Modification of a 2001 S203


New Member
Apr 3, 2013
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Your Mercedes
C220 S203 modified to 175 PS
With occasional help from members of this Forum, I have had a lot of fun and considerable reward investing time and esudos in a 12 year old C220 CDI Estate that a friend offered me 'for beer tokens' due to its high mileage.

But the engine was clearly fabulous and not sounding or feeling any older (at 173k) than my old Mondeo TDCi did at 70k. Knowing the previous 2 owners were "good news", I went for it.. signs of miles-age being reserved mainly to stone chips and rust patches.

For anyone considering doing something similar, this is what was done (with any comments)... The aims were 1. to create an exterior image that fitted the concept of "smokey" (the existing window tints generated this line of thought) and 2. a wolf in sheeps clothing" performance wise.

1. Rust removal, re-build/inhibiting (with fibreglass coating) Repainting + ditto to faded Bumpers. Much elbow grease with T Cut and Autoglym multiple times to get body colour to match new paint on bumpers and rust fixes.
2. Replace 15" wheels (+ spacehopper tyres) with 17" offset AMGs, restored and painted to my own mix (Silver 95%, Black 4%, Copper 1% see pic)
3. Re-fitted with Bridgestone Tyres - RE070 fronts - (a race legal OEM Imprezza tyre for 225 45 17 rims). RE050 245 40 17 rears.
4. AMG Anti Roll Bars @ £75 ea + fitting and drop links
5. Bespoke Remap (Black Code, to replace commonrail booster. Much smoother and more natural. +31PS and cost < £300)
6. K&N Panel Filter
7. Cleaned out EGR valve and flushed auto gearbox and filter
8. New Engine Oil fully synth
9. New Cabin Filter - what a difference!!!
10. Reset Throttle
11. Electrics and Vacuum Checked by Auto Electrician
12. Upgraded (slight drop) springs to adaptive damping. Smoother than Merc OEM springs on straight, sports-car solid at speed in bends. And v reasonable price. Ventura brand, through Performance Wheels' Ebay sub-site. Best investment together with remap
12. CKS Performance 4 fin grille, sprayed matte black (emblem in wheel colour) all with matte lacquer
13. Chrome Headlight trims, painted and lacqured matte black, together with "flying" emblem.
15. Chrome twin straigtening tips for the rather taxi-like OEM exhasust downpipes.

A few pictures from various stages attached if anyone is interested???

Total cost inc car... what I sold my 53 plate TDCi Mondeo for! Result: A first time MB nut!:D



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Senior Member
Mar 13, 2007
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West Berkshire
Your Mercedes
1998 CL420 C140
Did you use Plastidip (spelling?) on the grille?


Senior Member
Nov 16, 2007
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Your Mercedes
S class
How did you happen on the new Derry no. plate

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