willie shaw

Mercedes 380 sl 1982

8 posts in this topic

Just thought i would ask if any wammers have had experience with one of these, im looking at a mega low ,mileage one and thinking of purchasing.

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SL convertible? (The SLC is the hardtop) '82 is early so it's an R107 I'd expect. They date from the very best period of Merc quality, the time when no car was better built and took the V8 3.8 litre from the S class and put it in the SL chassis.

Look very carefully at the history. If it's genuine low mileage, full service history with no restoration, and still in excellent nik, then you have a gem. There are three or four national dealers who specialise in old merc restorations, and of these, a few have a well earned rep for excellent work. Here for example....http://www.ccbenz.co.uk/30621/index.html.

I've run 3 old mercs now, and the simple truth is that although they will run and run (500,000 miles for the 2.0 diesels is not uncommon) bodywork, seats etc age. You can still happily run any W124 on a daily basis, but the 123's and R107's are really sunny sunday cars now, if you want to preserve the value.

Only tip I have is to find a good indi merc garage for care and service. If you just want to run it into the ground, forget the above, but expect about £750 a year + service costs to keep it going.

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If you buy the latest Classic and Sportscar, they have a feature on buying this generation of SL. The main thing to watch out for seems to be rust, which can be difficult to spot without a thorough inspection, and very expensive to put right. They also mention that after-market electric hoods are best avoided. Other than that, they seem to be highly rated. V8s are quite a lot dearer to service than the sixes.

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2 extra cylinders? ;-)

Generally the 8s are heavier (the early V8s, 380 and 420, were very heavy) and produce more torque, both of which will cause accelerated wear and tear. Also, a gentleman or lady might cruise or waft in a 6, but the sound of the 8 on full chat is addictive.

The later 500SL had a significantly lighter all-alloy engine and was a very sweet car. One day I will have a 500SLC (or it's earlier incarnation, the 450SLC 5.0).

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thanks all, wondering why the 8s are dearer to maintain than the 6s?

Engine bay access is much tighter, more dismantling is required to get at some service items. Jag XJ-S with the V12 has the same problem.

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thanks for that, on another note, im travelling from ireland to guildford to see this, i suppose it is a long shot, but does anyone know of a good b and b in guildford?

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