My E320 CDI aka The Dad Tank

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Well it looks like Photobucket have semi-put their free hosting back in place. Although I moved across to Imgur now. :D

So the tank ticked over 130k recently. Still just as solid and good to drive as it was when I bought it with 100k on the clock.


Decided on a new set of mats from Carmats4U. I still have the OEM mats but have used these rubber mats previously, they're really good quality and do a great job protecting the floor.


Detailing wise the car is sitting under two coats of Dodo Juice Hard Candy and then a layer of Red Mist.


And the last addition to the car is a new number plate. I'd been in two minds about whether I'd put a private plate on it but after a look about this won me over haha


Haha that netting over the CLS has been excellent.

I have used covers for years with no detrimental effect. But I have always hated how they balloon and can move around in the wind. Turns out that you can buy a net that is designed for transporting a car with the cover on. Ideal as if stops the cover moving and ballooning in high winds. Literally hasn’t needed repositioning at all. Good times.

The E on the other hand doesn’t get quite as pampered haha Not far off though.
Looking lovely but i cant believe you actually use the Cargo nets on the Tunnel!! lol ;)

I just re-read what you put and realised you meant Groot! haha Every car needs a mascot.

Not a lot has been happening with the E of late. It's in a condition I'm really pleased with, not sure if there's anything cosmetically I want to do with it other than get the headlights polished.

I did give the car a detail a while back, basically so I could apply some new protection. So wash and hand polish with this.


Leave a great finish for two coats of this, Dodo Juice Supernatural Hybrid. This is a hybrid wax so part carnauba, part sealant and should last 6 months+


Then to top up, on the next wash I have applied a layer of Dodo Juice Red Mist. Again a really nice easy product to use, spray on the microfibre, a spray on the panel and wipe until gone. it contains solvents so not to be applied to a freshly waxed car but about 6 weeks of protection from a layer.


Certainly beads nicely now, even when dirty!


Quite liking these 3D number plates even if they do capture the water! haha


Next job is to re-coat the bloody headlights again! :D
As per my last update, I decided today was the day to give the headlights a new coating. I have had the Meguiars Perfect Clarity headlight kit for a while and used it on the E a couple of times.


It's not a permanent solution but it's very simple to use and definitely makes a decent improvement. So this is what the headlights have been looking like.


Initial step was the clean up the lenses with some Meguiars Plast-X which actually made a noticeable difference. Two coats of the lense coating later and this is how they look.


Even the sidelights came up much better.


Overall a great improvement and rolls back the years on the old beasty.

I gave the car a once over today since the weather brightened up. I have never used a fallout remover so decided I'd try this Autoglym Magma on the wheels.


Like most iron removers it looked the part doing it's thing. I agitated with a brush and rinsed. Was pleased with the contaminants it removed from the corners of the spokes.


Washed the rest of the car, still really liking these 3D plates


Rinsed, dried and a once over with quick detailer



Couple of moody pictures


I’m literally itching to attack those lenses with a proper headlight restoration kit. I think all those products you’ve been using are doing is glossing over the degraded/yellowed lacquer coating - you’ve got to sand it off properly to bring them back clear. You can’t be all that far from where I am, more than welcome to borrow the stuff needed if you want? :)

Would literally make the whole car look ten years younger! :D

Rest of the car looks spot on :cool:
Haha I do know what you mean will and I keep intending to properly sand the headlights back and re-coat them. I did do that when I first got the car I'm just being lazy as I have the kit. It just didn't seem to stay that way. Unless you have any tips mate?
Not sure why they’ve gone yellow again, did you remove all of the old coating? I have done a few sets now and never recoated them with anything, they’ve never gone yellow afterwards? Maybe it’s the coating you applied that’s the problem - they don’t really need anything on them at all, maybe just a little wax if you’re keen.

The 996 xenon lights are £5000 a pair, I did those ages ago and they still look like new. The ones on my 211 55k must have been 2/3 years after I did them and that was no garage queen, it sat and was used in all weather and they still looked fine when I sold it last month :cool:
Probably because I did a crap job the first time round hahaha

I suspect that I wasn't aggressive enough with the wet sanding so didn't take it back quite far enough. Could be the coating perhaps although I never got a full on shine after wet sanding and polishing, not until I applied the coating. i did find that the Plast-X lense cleaner actually removed a fair bit of oxidation before re-coating. I'll have to give them a full on attack at some point.

I'm not surprised you DIY'd the 996 lights at that cost!! Blimey. Oddly my other half has a CLS which is parked outside and used daily, it's newer than the E (09 vs 03) but the headlights are perfect.
Yes I think you probably didn’t go far enough with the sanding stage. The old coatings both yellow and go cloudy. I suspect you flattened the coating down leaving a yellow film remaining which is continuing to oxidise/go cloudy still and also leaving the yellowish tinge as before?

The facelift 996 Xenons are silly money. Mine has covered around 65k miles not but the lenses were in a very poor state - this is really common on these cars and many others these days though.

Sorry for the poor photos, I didn’t really take many pics of them before/after but you get the idea :)

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Certainly a massive difference and well worth it for the cosmetic element as well as cost saving! I'll definitely give wet sanding another go at some point, properly cut back the crappy layer and buff up clear. :)
Great post - good photos and clear rationale for the Familienwagen.

It's just that it's missing something. Can't quite put my finger on it.....

Hold on, I know !

A fifth door.

(OK, and maybe a V8)
Amen to that !
However That 211 looks great! Its so inspiring to see an " older " car looking like new I'd be happy to drive round in that, your right that engine is superb the MPG I got in my 320CDI estate was unbelievable and the torque - some say not a mile apart from the V8 in terms of daily driving in terms of low down grunt , I have the V6 OM 642 in a Vito now and its hopelessy undergeared ( because its a van ) first disappears at some ridiculously low mph, and best MPG i can get is 35 more like 31/ 32 most of the time having said that its one of the most comfortable drives ever on motorways / straight smooth roads .
You did well to find that lovely example and bring it to its current showroom state - great work . an inspiration to us all
I think what helps the 211 is that it was in production for a long time so with a private plate to many it could be a 2002 or a 2009 model. Also I think they struck on a design that looks very Mercedes and years later it still looks smart. I think for a car which cost me £4k and has provided me with 30,000 pretty much trouble free miles in efficient comfort it's great.

In terms of torque, since it's been re-mapped it's not a that far off my CLS63. The E now produces around 420lbs and the CLS makes about 48lbs so not a massive gap. The torque in the E being accessible lower down the rev range though and way better MPG figures (50mpg vs 25mpg on a motorway).

I was lucky with this one as it was very well cared fore prior to me buying, I recall looking round it and it just being in good condition. No little dings, scrapes or things that should have been touched up. Few stone chips but to be expected so it's been an easy to maintain and bring up to a high standard.
Very pretty. The Quixx headlight kits (eBay for about a tenner) work really well and reqs minimal effort.
No huge updates today, not re-done the headlights yet before anyone says haha.

Did give the car a wash yesterday though.




Although the car is waxed and then coated with Red Mist, I gave it a quick wipe down with this. Very good stuff and smells good too.


The OCD really kicked in as well as I cleaned up the fuel filler cap! haha



Then gave some engine plastics a bit of a once over. Chemical Guys New Look Trim Gel is great stuff.

Ioved my w211 E350 which yours looks identical, so enjoy.

Oy difference was I switched the front grill to a more modern style.
Unfortunately the tank has moved onto a new owner now. Was an excellent car though but replaced with a 2008 S320.

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