Query: 190E 1991

A lady here has a Calif 1991, 190E 2.4 4cyl for sale. It is currently at the garage - won't start. It has no rust at least not in any visible places (I didn't check underneath).
It has 121,255 miles on it - asking $2000. I looked through it - found the papers of the original purchase - but there was a repair invoice showing "problem starting" - that was while it was under warranty. The note stated it was due to running it while the battery was without water.
Obviously the car hasn't been care for appearance wise, but I'm wondering if this is a fair price. I've been doing some research on the internet, and it seems a fair price, however it is my understanding these cars are expensive to repair. The mechanic told me that the AC works. He said everything works - but then again, who knows.
The body is ok but for some pings and dings, the interior is ok too: the entire car needs a clean-up. It's obviously been around a lot of sand ... the beach?
Any thoughts? I plan to test drive it when it gets started! TIA
Helen
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$2000 is a fair price when the car is running... now the car is not so it is worth much lower. Check the battery voltage... if you got below 11... chances are pretty bad and need new battery.
Water running low on the battery usually means overcharging so you would have to change the voltage regulator on back of the alternator... about $30 part.
My suggestion is ask the lady if it is alright to bring the car to dealer for overall checkup... ask dealer first on how much and appointment. It is best to have a MB specialist check on the car BEFORE you buy it.
Tranny is expensive repair... more than what you will pay for the car... so you want someone who knows about MB tranny characteristics before you buy it.
Lastly... run a carfax history on the car... you will need the VIN number.
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Helen wrote:

I love my '86 190E 2.3 but, even though is used as a daily commuter, I doubt that I would get more than $2,000 if I were to sell it.
I live in the Bay Area and the car has no rust, no dings or dents. It has over 200K miles on the odometer!
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HHC wrote:

Thanks. The one I looked at is from San Diego and full of sand. It is my understanding that parts are difficult to find for these somewhat rare vehicles. Has that been your experience? Of course I'm speaking of somewhere other than California and other than a large city. But a mechanic told me the parts for these were hard to find. He said the junk yards that may have them don't want to part with them...due to no replacements. Hummm??? This one won't start and he said he's tried (checked?) just about everything - battery, alternator, etc., etc. If that is ture (difficult to find parts) then that means one of these could be in the shop for an extended amount of time. TIA.
Helen
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Helen wrote:

prices are typically MB HIGH. There are instances when the parts are special order but the Parts Department delivers them in two or three business days. On the other hand there are quite a few junk yards in the Bay Area that carry most everything needed for repairs and their prices are about 50% of MB list. Some popular items are new and in stock at substantially lower prices...
Hernando
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Parts are easy to get... mail order is bountiful and cheap... ton cheaper than dealer. It is finding the right mechanic to fix your car is rare
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Tiger wrote:

I definitely agree with you about the mechanic. The vehicle was taken to a local shop (the only foreign auto mechanic for nearly a hundred miles) and that's where I saw the car and talked with her(?) mechanic. I stopped by to see if he might possibly have a bulb I'm looking for. During the conversation he said something I knew was wrong but I didn't say anything. That told me something. Furthermore, he has an MB he wants to sell to me. He says he has too many cars and has to get rid of it. Yeah, right. I've been there and done that (e.g., bought a "car" from a mechanic). While it was not a Mercedes, it was beyond a shadow of a doubt the most expensive junker I've ever owned. It was constantly in the shop having something repaired or replaced. I once bought a $600 junker and drove it for two years! The mechanic's deal was a few thousand and a definite pile of bolts...GM Buick. It had a nice body style and interior. As far as looks go, it was fine, but it was one mechanical nightmare. Oh, yeah, the mechanic where the 190E is refuses to give me the name of the lady who owns the vehicle. Today he told me that the owner is in California (the daughter of the lady who brought the car in..limping(?). He is from other than the USA (nothing wrong with that, however, my experience... is something I haven't forgotten..same with the former mechanic). My mechanic gives me the good, the bad and the ugly straight up front. But he's 70 miles away and I would certainly like to have him look at this 190E. Actually that's two 190E's I've looked at within the past two weeks. I think I'll just pass on it and restore 'old reliable' to 'show room' (or close thereto) condition - my 240D all original except transmission which has about 50k on it). Currently "Big Blue" has 7,000+ short of 200,000. Yeah, I think I'll just concentrate on it.
Thanks to all of you for your information. I do appreciate it.
Helen
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