sl500 buying advice please

nick7nick7

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hi, i have just joined the page as i am after some advice.
i am looking to buy a early 2000's sl500 (i think),
i was chatting to mechanic (not auto mechanic), he said the best ones are with the 7G gearbox as the 5speed couldnt handle it.
now im no mechanic, so i dont really understand it all.

any advice would be greatly appreciated.

nick
 

Gkinghorn

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a lot depends on yur Budget as well. Are you talking th R129 or the R230 - ie old shape or newer (until recently)
 

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To get a 7G gearbox you would be into 2004, R230. To suggest that a 5 speed box cannot handle the power/torque is not correct.......it does so most adequately.
The early 7G boxes had some reliability issues and many had to be rebuilt.

Mic
 
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nick7nick7

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a lot depends on yur Budget as well. Are you talking th R129 or the R230 - ie old shape or newer (until recently)

it would be the r230, budget wise about 8k, then a couple spare should i need it.
 
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nick7nick7

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To get a 7G gearbox you would be into 2004, R230. To suggest that a 5 speed box cannot handle the power/torque is not correct.......it does so most adequately.
The early 7G boxes had some reliability issues and many had to be rebuilt.

Mic

hmm, what would you suggest? wait it out till i can afford to get a 7G?
 

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Good luck finding an R230 for £8k ! If you do I suggest you put the same amount to one side for the repair bills that will come with it !
 
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nick7nick7

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Good luck finding an R230 for £8k ! If you do I suggest you put the same amount to one side for the repair bills that will come with it !

iv seen a few! only just in my budget tho to be fair. Are they prone to faults?
 

Mic

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hmm, what would you suggest? wait it out till i can afford to get a 7G?

My SL is a September 2003 car and has the 5 speed box which is robust, tried, tested and perfectly adequate. To get the best car possible on your budget you will have to target a 2002/3 car.......the gear box is absolutely fine and not something that you need to focus on.
When viewing potential cars you need to be aware of the effects of possible storm water ingress.....have the seals been ''fixed''. What if any of the potentially expensive elements been replaced eg sbc pump, abc pump, hydraulic struts......if they have.....fine......if not......possibly also fine but go in with your ''eyes wide open''. These are great cars but my advice is purchase for the long term and budget for some early years expense.
Some of those who have purchased with their eyes wide shut have had to bail out prematurely.
£8k will possibly get you a £70k car but definitely with £70k running costs.

Mic
 

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I think your mechanic has the boxes the wrong way around, they didn't fit the 7G boxes to the AMG models as they couldn't handle the additional power initially. As per above, remember it's a £70K car with £70K running costs...
 

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At £8k you could run into issues with any or all of the 3 pumps, braking, suspension, roof etc. Budget £1k ish for each. Then there are front suspension leg ball joints at £1.2k each. Then there are roof seals at anywhere from £50 diy to £2k MB dealer. It is vital you check the boot for wetness. They can leak badly and that knocks out a lot of the expensive electrics in there. Ditto with the front passenger floor.
Then there is all the routine stuff, tyres are not cheap. 16 spark plugs, suspension bushes and parts and thats before you run into electrical gremlins ! This forum can help you minimise some, but not all of those costs. Used PSE pumps are as rare as rocking horse poo on ebay and still cost upwards of £650 for example before fitting. SBC brake pumps simply time out although there is a way an independent can extend that. Replacement is now not covered by MB (read forums here on that) and will cost you £1.2k.
Budget £180 for an ATF change on a high miler.
The thing to remember is that you will be running and repairing an £80k car not an £8k car.
I recommend a very thorough inspection on a cheap one. The lowest prices on Pistonheads seem to be around £10k for a 2002 with 100k+ miles.
Having said all of that they are fabulous cars when working well. Quiet comfortable and fast enough.
 

Clkrichard

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I think your mechanic has the boxes the wrong way around, they didn't fit the 7G boxes to the AMG models as they couldn't handle the additional power initially. As per above, remember it's a £70K car with £70K running costs...

The 7g box is ok but then there is the valve block ....... I read on another forum though of a way of cleaning them ....
 
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nick7nick7

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My SL is a September 2003 car and has the 5 speed box which is robust, tried, tested and perfectly adequate. To get the best car possible on your budget you will have to target a 2002/3 car.......the gear box is absolutely fine and not something that you need to focus on.
When viewing potential cars you need to be aware of the effects of possible storm water ingress.....have the seals been ''fixed''. What if any of the potentially expensive elements been replaced eg sbc pump, abc pump, hydraulic struts......if they have.....fine......if not......possibly also fine but go in with your ''eyes wide open''. These are great cars but my advice is purchase for the long term and budget for some early years expense.
Some of those who have purchased with their eyes wide shut have had to bail out prematurely.
£8k will possibly get you a £70k car but definitely with £70k running costs.

Mic

ok, thanks for that advice. is rust an issue? i'm going to see one tomorrow, its just starting to show on the rear arches, should i run away? its a 12 year old car, so its to be expected?
 
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nick7nick7

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The 7g box is ok but then there is the valve block ....... I read on another forum though of a way of cleaning them ....

o eck, its starting to get a bit complex now. should i retrain as a mechanic?
 

Mic

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ok, thanks for that advice. is rust an issue? i'm going to see one tomorrow, its just starting to show on the rear arches, should i run away? its a 12 year old car, so its to be expected?

Rust on the rear arches is not a surprise.......most of the rest of the body panels are aluminium......check the corners of the roof......a couple of Posters on here have experienced corrosion in these places. Rust should not really be a major issue if addressed sufficiently early.......if not DIY a good local body shop should be able to sort it for only a few hundred £s.

Mic
 
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nick7nick7

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Rust on the rear arches is not a surprise.......most of the rest of the body panels are aluminium......check the corners of the roof......a couple of Posters on here have experienced corrosion in these places. Rust should not really be a major issue if addressed sufficiently early.......if not DIY a good local body shop should be able to sort it for only a few hundred £s.

Mic

ok thanks mic, is there any other issues to do with the roof that i should check?
 

Mic

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o eck, its starting to get a bit complex now. should i retrain as a mechanic?

Spend some time reading and understanding the the enormous amount of information I put up on my album.......easily read at 65% zoom.

In nearly 10yrs. of ownership and 87+k miles my biggest extra-ordinary expense has been a replacement ABC pump but who knows what ''tomorrow'' holds?

http://forums.mercedesclub.org.uk/album.php?albumid=373

Mic
 

Clkrichard

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ok, thanks for that advice. is rust an issue? i'm going to see one tomorrow, its just starting to show on the rear arches, should i run away? its a 12 year old car, so its to be expected?

I think rust is way down the list of worries with an R230 and the advice above is spot on. I have none on my 2005 model. How many miles on the one you are looking at ?
 

Mic

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ok thanks mic, is there any other issues to do with the roof that i should check?

Not really.......but as with any used car make certain that EVERYTHING works as it should.......especially the roof.......and that there are no dash lights warning lights/messages of any kind.

Mic
 
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Clkrichard

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Guys do we know an Indy in Lincs we can steer Nick towards for an inspection ?
Olly at PCS only charged me £60 for an hours check up and then absorbed that in the the work that followed. That was £1,800 though but well worth it as the car wasnt expensive to buy.
 


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