Well it had to happen...the Mercedes bug has bitten deep again and I have
bought another car here in the UK, so my 1988 260E is up for sale.
The new car is a 1990 W126 500SE, in smoke silver with a mushroom leather
interior and it looks great. It has 127, 000 miles but only a partial
service history (which normally would put me off but the price was good and
the car drove quite well.) It has an electric rear blind (working),
orthopaedic seats (they seem to work but make only very, very slight
difference), air con (working, quite cold and it was hot today!), electric
seats (all working), and lots of other gadgets which all work.
Problems with the car are:
1) Play in the steering. Over 1 inch with the wheel straight ahead, just
outside spec I believe. The car is fine in a straight line but feels odd
when moving quickly to the right (especially). This is almost worrying at
times since it feels as if it is going to go where it wants and not where I
need it to go! I will have the steering box checked and maybe adjusted next
week but suspect something else is worn as these are heavy cars and steering
parts certainly will wear.
2) Misfire. A new fault. The car seemed to run well during the 120 mile
journey home from where I bought it. But on restarting this evening (on a
very hot day - 95F in England!) it missed for about 1 mile before smoothing
out. I had a similar problem with my 260E and replacing all the injectors
cured the fault. However, I think this car is in dire need of some extensive
TLC rather than the normal "services" it has been subjected to, so I will
replace the distributor cap, rotor arm and ignition leads as a starter and
will go from there. This should eliminate a simple ignition problem. Any
further misfire will require some deeper investigation. I noticed that the
car achieved an idle CO reading of just 0.20 % for its safety/emission test.
This seems very low - I don't have any service manuals yet, so can someone
confirm this is not the cause of my problem - what should the idle CO be?
3) Cruise control. Sometimes it works (like it did for 50 miles earlier
today) and then it doesn't work at all. My cruise in my 124 works perfectly,
so I was hoping this would too although I know they can be problematic. I
expect that this could be a bad switch/bad connector/oxidation problem
(well, always best to start optimistic and easy!) I have repaired a cruise
control module by simply resoldering a couple of bad joints in the past and
I was surprised by the poor quality soldering in the MB control unit.
Any comments, words of encouragement, advice gratefully received. I'm
interested in hooking up with any W126 owners as well.
Al Bolton, G4VSQ
1990 Mercedes 500SE 127,000 miles
1988 Mercedes 260E 160,000 miles (FOR SALE!)