1990 Mercedes 230TE w124 added to the fleet

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You might ask how can you go from 6.0L V12 to a 2.3L dull station wagon? Good question! This car will be a workhorse car for all year use, hauling trailers and transporting stuff.

It’s a bit scruffy looking when you get up close and have the impression of standing outside too long without a decent polish.

Lets start with the pros:

  • It’s a Sportline version – Oh yes Sport with 132 HP
  • It has ADS (automatic differential lock), so usable in the Norwegian winter
  • Mechanically the car runs fine, engine and breaks etc.
  • No significant rust to speak of
  • The black metallic color is quite nice and more easy to sell than for example green
  • No electric windows, so less things to break
  • AC seems to work OK
  • It has an electric sunroof that can be opened and closed
  • Comes with a DAB radio – FM is obsolete in Norway
  • It is face lift 1 – looks better than the 85 original and does not have the rust paint problems of face lift 2

And then to the negatives:

  • No electric windows – I need to please my luxurious ego
  • The sunroof tilting function is not really working at the moment – not the end of the world
  • There is a leak from the hose of the rear window washer reservoir – needs to be fixed
  • The cables and vacuum hose of the right front door have been cut
  • The driver seat is quite worn and needs a new sitting pad
  • Door check straps needs to be changed
  • Switch for the rear wiper needs to be replaced
  • Front plastic bumper has cracks – needs replacement
  • Fabric interior, where is the luxury?
  • Ugly unoriginal rims – Needs to be changed for sure. Good thing I have some original w126 rims that can be bolter straight on
  • Worn winter tires
  • The key for the door and ignition are different

So is this a lemon car? Not really, but not a show car either. It has some issues and the age shows. The price also reflected that. The mileage is not low either at above 350.000 km, so at least its driven in properly.

Many of will might ask how I can drive 3 cars simultaneously around. Well obviously I don’t. Mostly my father will use it as his daily driver. I can though see some nice articles come out of it. And having the opportunity to drive a classic w124 can be fun!

This is just a quick teaser. A full review will be posted at the end of the summer! So stay tuned.

Cheers, Robs out

Why the not so Sporty or Leicht (SL) R129 is the next car you should get

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Why is the R129 SLs so cheap these days and the R107 SL so expensive in comparison? The R107 has already become a true classic since it started production back in 1971. The oldest R129s are already passing 25 years and becoming old. But they are ridiculously cheap compared to what you get. This is a common trait among luxury sedans aged between 20-30 years old before the prices start to go up again, but the SL is supposed to be a sports car and it is a convertible. These types of cars normally have quite higher prices than the aging luxury sedans.

The funny thing is that you can get a V12 SL600 fully equipped for just around 15k Stirling pounds. That’s crazy for a car that nearly cost 100K£ new back in the olden days, especially considering the inflated currency and the value of money back. Why would you even consider buying  new car when you can get this luxury three pointed star of rolling ludicrousness for absolutely less than a single cruise holiday to the Caribbean? Also if you want one R129 in red, they are the most expensive ones, not many came in red and for some reason they are highly valued.

The R129 SLs are also reliable cars where the bigger engines have super strong dual overhead cam axles. Buy it, drive it and don’t bother opening the hood in between services. The only major thing you need to take care of here is the soft top that will deteriorate quicker than the rest of the car. But you probably have a garage right? You can even get them with a hard top which can be used for other seasons than the summer, perfect for northern Europe. Although my personal opinion is that you should avoid driving around in a convertible with the hard top on, what if the sun comes out!?!?

The styling has become timeless yet still feels modern even though it’s a 30 year old design. I have never heard anyone said that the R129 SL looks bad, and in the end that’s what matters right? To drive around in a cool car is first priority. Power, speed, comfort and reliability usually comes second when having a 2-seated mostly unpractical convertible. If you get the R129 you will get all of these except the practicality. Although you will probably fit your unused golf clubs while impressing your business friends that most likely are not good at gold either. (I would rather hang my muddy mountain bike off the back, throw in my diving gear in the boot along with the boots and back pack for hiking, but that’s just me)

So what are you all waiting for? Get out there and buy a cool R129 and drive it!

To be inspired check out these videos about the R129 from Harry’s garage and The Smoking Tire respectively:

Cheers, Robs out 

Views from behind the wheel in a W123

Reading Time: 1 minuteWhat are the things you can see from behind the wheel driving a W123? Beautiful nature, wild animals, interesting architecture, challenging conditions and weather and unimaginable surprises. This is a small collection of stuff seen from going about in a W123.

The road trip is enjoyed best with good friends in a vintage Benz.

Of course you can see the same from other cars, but I found that the whole experience is much more visceral and when having road trips in a vintage Benz. You can maybe even call it cozy behind that big steering wheel hearing the sweet hum of the engine. Somehow you are more connected with the car and the road.

Instead of taking anti depressives or going to the psychologist due to the stress of daily life, take a week with some good friends on a relaxing road trip where the aim should be the trip itself. Go some place you have never been to see new stuff and not worry so much about the destination. There are always interesting things to see along the way. You might even end up some better place if things didn’t go as planned. Take a tent and a sleeping bag with you and you can camp literary anywhere.

Sometimes you need to cross bridges.

w123 over hardanger bridge
Crossing Hardanger Bridge

Sometimes there are optical effects in the atmosphere.

Optical effects

Sometimes you see a field besides a river.

w123 and field view
River valley

Sometimes there will be rain.

w123 and heavy rain
A good dose of H2O

Sometimes there are good winter days.

snow covered field
Winter can be good too!

Sometimes driving in winter is needed.

w123 in winterlandscape
Did you remember to change from summer tires?

Sometimes there are fjords to explore.

w123 and fjord
Fjord country

Sometimes there are wild animals.

moose in the road
Moose in the road, for testing brake performance

Sometimes there are domesticated animals.

sheep in the road
Sheep on the road, for testing the horn

Sometimes there are very cold days.

cold landscape
Frozen landscape, hopefully the heater is effective

Sometimes tunnels are explored.

hardanger fjord tunnel
Wait a roundabout inside a tunnel?

Sometimes you will need to have a break.

300TD in mountains
Pit stop, who needs to take a leak?


Vintage Car show in Cologne

Reading Time: 1 minuteWhile I was in Köln or Cologne as it’s called in English like the fragrance, for an weekend back in 2012, I randomly came across a vintage car show in the streets outside an art museum.  I came across some really nice classic Mercedes that showed up. Worth mentioning is that all these cars came here driving and left driving, and even if they were shiny and clean you could see they are used to be driven, totally my motto with old cars. The paint does not have to be perfect as long as the car is in good condition to be driven. Cars should be driven and not standing collecting dust in a garage!

I made a short video of various cars and explore in more detail in the images under.

Over to the images, mostly Mercedes Benz.

Mercedes Benz w112
W112 300SE

Mercedes Benz w186
W186 300 Adenauer cabriolet, quite rare and expensive.

Mercedes Benz W108

Mercedes Benz R107
The R107, always wanted one of these

Oh and lets not forget the W123s!

Mercedes w123 coupe
W123 Coupe

Mercedes W123 Sedan
W123 Sedan, interesting green moss colour, not my preference in colour choice

Mercedes w123 Wagon
s123 wagon, diesel power

Mercedes w112
W112. Look closely and you will see a w123 wagon too

Mercedes benz interior
Look at all that leather!

Mercedes Benz pagoda
The pagoda, I think it is overpriced compared to the R107 which is much better in performace and handling

Mercedes benz pagoda
Fintail and pagoda side by side

And since this a web page about cars, lets look at some of the other cool vintage cars at the show!

Dodge Challenger
Dodge Challenger

Jaguar E-type
Jaguar E-type

Ferrari 365 GTB Daytona
Ferrari 365 GTB Daytona

Porsche 911
Porsche 911

BMW 2002
BMW 2002

Fiat 500
Fiat 500, timeless shoe box

Renault Alpina
Renault Alpina, one of the more special looking cars out there

Porsche 911
Another Porsche

Willys jeep
Willys jeep, one of them have written Golden Gate ’48 under the windscreen

Messerschmidth, no not the 109 fighter jet. Smallest car on the show!


Porsche 914
Porsche 914, very disliked by many, but loved by a few, I think it looks appealing from behind

And lastly a cheeky pic of me next to the 190SL