Advice welcome on the 'older' Merc. Sell up or keep?

kdh

Active Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2013
Messages
170
Car
E Class 320cdi Estate


Gentlemen,

I have a 2004 E-Class 320 cdi Elegance Estate in silver with light grey leather and a few toys.

I have owned her for three years, she cost £5500 and has covered 146,000 trouble-free miles, 15,000 in my ownership.

Unfortunately, things have now started to go wrong and I think the point of my post is to ask whether to cut and run or start spending money.

I've just had a couple of injectors replaced and all injectors re-seated (£700) as it was smelling of diesel in the cabin and the wife was whingeing.

I have a warning light on, indicating that the brakes need attending to. Wallet Alert - Workshop!

A stone cracked the top of the screen passenger side last week. Non-repairable.

The tyres are between 5 and 7 years old and I usually like to replace at this time.

Suspension seems okay, electrics all work, she pulls well and the gearbox changes smoothly.

Bodywise, small paint scab under the passenger side light, tiny bit of rust at bottom corner of passenger door, couple of small bumper scrapes, bottom of rear wing has come unclipped next to the tailgate. Electric luggage cover doesn't work.

Needs an MOT and Service next month.

Full Mercedes Service History and one previous owner for new - until I bought it, where I got my local garage to service it. Not just because I'm tight, but the nearest Main Dealer is a trek.

I could sell now and maybe receive £2500 privately at a push. Hate selling cars and dislike rude and ruthless private buyers and dealers.

I know that in the hands of a German taxi driver these 'bulletproof' cars can go on for many more miles.

I guess I am concerned that at this mileage there may some big bills around the corner which I don't have unlimited funds to cater for.

Thoughts?

(This post is not masquerading as a For Sale ad). Happy to keep the car, but with other marques I have owned at this mileage, once things start 'going' it maybe better to sell up and buy something with less mileage. I have had a 120,000 miler Porsche before which crippled me in on-going repair bills and I promised myself I'd never throw money at high-mileage cars again.

All advice gratefully received. Sorry for the long one. Many thanks for reading.
 
Last edited:
D

Deleted member 37751

Guest
I think the fact you're asking the question will give you your answer...

In your position I'd do one of two things;

1. Get rid and try and realistically get as much as I can for it.

2. Spend a good chunk on it to get it back to tip-top condition and run it for another three years, it'll lose very little in depreciation between what you get for it now and what you'd get for it three years down the line.
 
OP
OP
K

kdh

Active Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2013
Messages
170
Car
E Class 320cdi Estate
I think the fact you're asking the question will give you your answer...

2. Spend a good chunk on it to get it back to tip-top condition and run it for another three years, it'll lose very little in depreciation between what you get for it now and what you'd get for it three years down the line.

Good advice, thanks, As long as something Major doesn't go wrong. That's the worry. Has anyone had anything Major to go wrong at this mileage?

I see eBay ads where the seller has 'just spent £3000 on water pumps, suspension, electrics' etc.
 
Last edited:

wu56Shoozz

MB Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 17, 2016
Messages
1,982
Location
You'll need a passport to get over the Wall..
Car
MB Vito 111CDi / W203 C Class Saloon 320CDi Avantgarde
Okay.. what are you going to get in its place?? I Bet you like the comfort and luxury as well as space.. so what for the same money will replace her..

In honesty something has caught you attention that's making you ask this question as that's a nice car.. needs a little fettling but what car doesn't.. I've yet to own one that hasn't had a major bill in its time.. maybe better the devil you know?? just saying like..:dk:

I got a lift off a taxi last year, from Rotterdam to Schipol and the car was your model.. 300k + on the clock and the guy was an old bod (not saying you are) but the interior was his second and the rest was original.. and it was a minter otherwise smooth as silk, power was there and still comfortable.. so much so I paid 90 euro just to enjoy the ride and the chat..(company paid for it)
 

zipdip

MB Enthusiast
SUPPORTER
Joined
Mar 5, 2015
Messages
3,771
Location
Essex
Car
s320
It is all about how you feel,I once sold a car I just new was going to give me trouble, a friend wanted to buy it I tried everything to put him off,that car gave him no trouble for 5 years and about 80,000 miles,it was a source of great leg pulling ,it was the only time my in built feelings about a car have been wrong,if you are not happy,if you think the car is going to let you down sell it.
 
OP
OP
K

kdh

Active Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2013
Messages
170
Car
E Class 320cdi Estate
Ha. Nothing's caught my attention. Wife thinks a newer Golf/BMW/Ford/Mazda Estate with less mileage will give us less trouble/cost/breakdowns in the future.

She doesn't have to be obeyed, but I'd hate to breakdown next year on a French Autoroute and her saying 'I told you so.".

I hate that sort of thing, but I need a reason to keep her.

(The car, not the wife).
 

clk320x

Hardcore MB Enthusiast
SUPPORTER
Joined
Sep 27, 2016
Messages
11,082
Location
UK
Car
W212 & W211
Ha. Nothing's caught my attention. Wife thinks a newer Golf/BMW/Ford/Mazda Estate with less mileage will give us less trouble/cost/breakdowns in the future.

She doesn't have to be obeyed, but I'd hate to breakdown next year on a French Autoroute and her saying 'I told you so.".

I hate that sort of thing, but I need a reason to keep her.

(The car, not the wife).

I'd keep it personally, "The known devil is better than the unknown angel". You may find another car you swap her with may have tonnes of problems... My bet is she'll serve you another 200k easily... the engines are fairly bulletproof & brakes etc can be sorted fairly cheaply if you use ECP voucher codes etc.
 

lfckeeper

Active Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2015
Messages
474
Location
Ingleby Barwick near Stockton on Tees
Car
Bmw 5 series (Former W203 C class and 2x W219 CLS owner)
Better the devil you know IMO.

With this car you know what is wrong with it, Another despite less mileage could have a list of 'hidden' issues and you end up paying anyway.
 

John

Hardcore MB Enthusiast
SUPPORTER
Joined
Mar 3, 2011
Messages
13,144
Location
Daan Saaf
Car
W222 S500L
I'm also in the "better the devil you know club".

You know what you have done to it already. You know how reliable it is.

The only time I would change it is if it is a lemon or you know big trouble is imminent (or the usual things like it doesn't suit what you need it for etc.).

Your list sounds OK and is just an accumulation of a few bills which you could get on any car.

Whatever you change to could have big bills around the corner for all you know...

At the end of the day, it's all down to how well the car is looked after and luck i.e. a lottery!
 

clk320x

Hardcore MB Enthusiast
SUPPORTER
Joined
Sep 27, 2016
Messages
11,082
Location
UK
Car
W212 & W211
I'm also in the "better the devil you know club".

You know what you have done to it already. You know how reliable it is.

The only time I would change it is if it is a lemon or you know big trouble is imminent (or the usual things like it doesn't suit what you need it for etc.).

Your list sounds OK and is just an accumulation of a few bills which you could get on any car.

Whatever you change to could have big bills around the corner for all you know...

At the end of the day, it's all down to how well the car is looked after and luck i.e. a lottery!

exactly, you never know a much newer car may have tonnes more issues
 

Rory

MB Enthusiast
SUPPORTER
Joined
Mar 12, 2005
Messages
7,427
Location
Cheshire, UK
Car
C270CDi Estate (late 2004 facelift model)
I got a lift off a taxi last year, from Rotterdam to Schipol and the car was your model.. 300k + on the clock...

I think cars tend to go more with age than mileage. Mine has only done 85K but I've had the same dilemma as the OP, particularly when the car's last dealer service threw up "advisory" work that totalled more than it was worth.

I've never actively tried to sell mine but a few people have expressed interest in it - however they're hoping they can have the car for pricing that makes me think I should hang on to it and if a big bill hits then dump it then, even if that means selling it as "spares or repair".


Replacement is the other issue - I did fancy a GLC but I be suicidal if I'd done that based on the stories from owners!
 

wu56Shoozz

MB Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 17, 2016
Messages
1,982
Location
You'll need a passport to get over the Wall..
Car
MB Vito 111CDi / W203 C Class Saloon 320CDi Avantgarde
Ha. Nothing's caught my attention. Wife thinks a newer Golf/BMW/Ford/Mazda Estate with less mileage will give us less trouble/cost/breakdowns in the future.

She doesn't have to be obeyed, but I'd hate to breakdown next year on a French Autoroute and her saying 'I told you so.".

I hate that sort of thing, but I need a reason to keep her.

(The car, not the wife).

OK, being a former VW both Golf's and Fords are out..VW are high maintenance I had two on my driveway one that had two turbo's in a year, a gearbox replacement, and the usual wearable items, discs pads etc..

The Second had two clutches again in a year and kept lunching the radiators.. calipers are also a thing on VW's that seize frequently and that's a couple of hundred to sort.. then there's the aircon needs recharged on a yearly basis..and the window regulators ..repair kits are a no no..

Fords have poorer build quality and engine issues on the diesels (Camshaft sensors?) causing limp home mode..


I came to Merc after watching two or three different programmes (car related) all saying the same thing "You can't go wrong with a Merc for reliability, all the switches and knobs still work, it drives as it should.." I bought my C Class to replace an ageing Passat that like you started to cost £500 every time to repair.. but It had 168k miles on her and drove like new, many that worked/saw her thought it was a great car.. but I'd had enough.. so after searching I ended up with my current low miler 67k 2006 C Class and yes its had a few repairs, needed two rear springs, full service & gearbox fluid change, lower track arms, full set of discs and pads all round and currently waiting on the Turbo intake duct as mine was all brittle and broke..but the upshot of all that is..ALL still works, aircon, cruise, heated seats, electric windows, comfortable as hell, smooth as silk of the V6 and a new set of boots on her and we're away..

So seeing your car, I'd just spend the money, bring her up to spec the way you want her and enjoy her for another quarter million miles.. there's no rust on her is there??
 

saff

MB Enthusiast
SUPPORTER
Joined
Mar 20, 2016
Messages
1,921
Location
Lancashire
Car
S211 E220 CDI Avantgarde W246 B180 CDI Sport
I'm a keeper.

I'd spend the dosh it needs rather than buy a newer 'lesser' car and still be unsure of what you're buying. I was told many years ago that to buy a used car was to buy someone else's problems; at least you know what your issues are.

It is nice however to buy another car but that excitement soon wears off.
 

MancMike

New Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2014
Messages
0
Just keep it. At that value, I'd rather have the car than the money. Don't factor tyres and wear 'n' tear into it, it's not the car's fault.
 

Yugguy

MB Enthusiast
Joined
Apr 6, 2016
Messages
2,256
Location
Rugby UK
Car
W204 C220CDI Elegance with Comand
Brake shouldn't be too pricy, especially at an indy.
Can your windscreen not be done through insurance?
 

Abb

MB Enthusiast
SUPPORTER
Joined
Aug 28, 2013
Messages
3,647
Location
UK
Car
Mercedes
Swap the wife and keep the car, so she will never know what future problems (if any arose) problem solved! :D

On a serious note, I am in the keep camp! I had a similar trail of thought recently when thinking of changing one of mine, and the way I see it...
A) You don't sort out any of the issues you have pointed out and advertise the car as is and any potential buyers come and beat you down on the price pointing out the flaws and you end up giving it away just to get rid.
B) You put all the issues right obviously to achieve the highest price but potential buyers will still beat (or at least try) you down, thats after you have tried to achieve the correct balance of price and current market, as you don't want to price yourself out of the market but still need to get buyers to come and have a look. Its all costing you to do that and in effect you have made it good again and you give the buyer the set of keys to a great example of a car with all the faults put right!
C) You spend a few ££ making it mint and keep enjoying her (the car not the wife) and finally ....
D) You spend a few more ££ on treating her with the ££ money saved by the good decisions you have made and keep enjoying her (the wife not the car) ;)
 
OP
OP
K

kdh

Active Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2013
Messages
170
Car
E Class 320cdi Estate
Yes I think it can, I'll look into that.

Some very valid points there and thanks very much for your replies and sensible thinking.

Have to keep the car now, be mad to sell. I know the car and all its history and it would be just my luck to buy something inferior but newer and have a turbo or gearbox go.

Cheers all.
 

sc3992

Active Member
Joined
Sep 8, 2014
Messages
134
I think that cars of that age have more style and look better than some of the newer cars, especially the interiors. And once the works been done, you know it's been done.........
 

sc3992

Active Member
Joined
Sep 8, 2014
Messages
134
Having looked at the picture again, it definitely looks stylish and graceful.........
 
OP
OP
K

kdh

Active Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2013
Messages
170
Car
E Class 320cdi Estate
A bit like me.

ha.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top Bottom