I'm interested in buying an older Mercedes convertible and I've seen
three good potentials but don't know much about insider preferred cars.
We ran Nada and Kelley Blue book and Manheimgold etc. and they seem to
all be about equal.
Here they are:
1988 Merc 560sl with over 200k miles on it, in pretty good shape, may
need front end work
1983 Merc 500sl Gray market from Germany, emissions changed and passed,
great condition 120k miles
1984 Merc 380sl with 150k miles repainted, great condition, no soft top
Any of these hold value better than the others? Any advice would be
On 21 Aug 2005 07:00:08 -0700,
had to open a new box of zerones to say:
All three cars should remain on the bottom of anyone's dream list for
the following reasons:
1. 200 thousand miles is too much mileage for a specialty car,
especially one that was produced in the tens of thousands... Buy it
only if you're willing to take it to your grave because you'll be
financially upside down in it as long as you own it...
2. Gray market cars are almost as soft in the market as flood
recoveries... When you're ready to sell this money pit, look for a guy
who's being wearing a bag over his head for the last thirty years as a
3. The 380SL is the weakest link in the SL chain, being underpowered
and early versions had timing chain issues... The repaint and lack of
a soft top puts that car at the very bottom of your list...
The best buy in the SL series is the 87-89 year models with under a
100K on the clock... There's always a bunch of them listed in
Hemming's Motor News but beware of the guys who fell in love with the
car and are now selling it because they can't afford to keep it up...
Insist on a pre-purchase inspection for anything you get the hots for;
it'll save you money, which you can then use to repair the climate
control when it fails... Good luck...
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Yeah, you can buy a newer, much more expensive, and anecdotally much
lower quality money pit instead!
I agree with zenits comments 100%
PS ( I like the old pagoda tops myself), although the new SLKs sure do
look fine also.
Don't buy a car because it will hold it's value, buy one because it
lights your fire.
I bought a 380SL years ago, put chrome wire wheels on it, and drove it
for a couple of years. Sold it for very slightly less than it cost
me, but it started to rust and so I got rid of it.
Now I have a 93 SL 320 with just over 100K miles, immaculate, still
worth about what I paid for it but I've had so much enjoyment from
this car that the money end has become completely irrelevant.
It's an investment in pleasure, not in a savings account.
However, there are measures one can take to reduce depreciation. These
usually depend on the age of the car (less applicable to old cars) and
country. At least one should be aware of them before making any purchasing
For direct contact replace nospam with schmetterling
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