420 SEL

Hello all,
Thinking about purchasing a 420 sel 1989. I wish to find others who have experience with this vehicle? Type of things to look out for, gas
mileage, repair headaches.
Thank you.
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Not much gas mileage.
Be sure the engine's timing chain isn't too old - over 120K miles. Chains stretch and eventually break - the pistons hit the then unsynchronized valves, bend and break them, the valve guides and the cam. A big expensive mess, cost to fix is about what you will pay for a cheap 420SEL, so change the chains when you find the right car and it will be fine for a long time.
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The rule of thumb on SEL timing chains is 100K miles and/or 10 years. While the chains seldom break, the guide rails contain parts which become brittle over time and miles. These parts then break and fall into the teeth of the timing gear which then causes the timing chain to jump resulting in major damages to the engine components. Regular oil changes will make the chains and all engine parts last longer but you are taking a chance if you deviate from the 100K/10 year rule. Also make sure the AC works as that is an expensive repair. Make sure the tranny oil has been changed regularly. The best used MB to buy is the car that comes with complete service history. You will pay more for a cream puff with records, but you won't regret it. And be sure to have the car checked over by a qualified MB mechanic. Pay a bit more upfront for a good car WITH RECORDS and save a lot of $$ later. _____________________________________________

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