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Discussion Starter #1
What the hell, I figure with the broad spectrum of members on this board, someone must have some personal experience with these cars. I have been shopping recently for a new daily driver, and the 1997 to 2001 SL500 popped up on the radar screen as a great deal, it amazes me at how cheap these cars are used. The body style was redesigned in 03, but the 97 to 01 cars are still very classy in my opinion, the price is even more appealing than the looks. These cars retailed for around $90K, and can be had for the mid to low $20K's now, with average mileage. I was wondering if anyone here has ever owned one, and what your impression of the car was, how it held together, and any useful info you may have about it.

Thanks

Eric
 

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The low prices are due to 2 main things:
1. Buyers of high end luxury cars don't buy used cars.
2. They are very expensive to maintain.

To get a nice one you really have to look for a one owner car; i.e. the original 'rich' person who bought it and took care of it. Typically they get bought used by someone who can't really afford such a car, and get thrashed and abused, then are sold really cheap.

Awsome drivers car though, and if you can find a clean one and afford the upkeep, more power to you!
 

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I owned a 2004 C55 AMG and loved it, until I got totally bored driving it because it can't be had with a manual transmission. I think the Merc (and especially the AMG) engines are bulletproof. Gobs of torque and great sound.
IMO, they are are great daily drivers, but a tad non-involving to drive (if that is what you are after).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
anucci said:
I owned a 2004 C55 AMG and loved it, until I got totally bored driving it because it can't be had with a manual transmission. I think the Merc (and especially the AMG) engines are bulletproof. Gobs of torque and great sound.
IMO, they are are great daily drivers, but a tad non-involving to drive (if that is what you are after).

Thats exactly what I am looking for, I already have a fire breathing monster of a car (my 94 impala ss runs 11's without the nitrous) and want something classy and subded to just cruise around in.

Its funny, my chevy was only available with an automatic, and I grew tired of it also, so I converted the car to a stick with a Viper spec T56 handling the shifting. Banging gears in a 4200lb car is a thing of beauty!
 

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Some Guy said:
Thats exactly what I am looking for, I already have a fire breathing monster of a car (my 94 impala ss runs 11's without the nitrous) and want something classy and subded to just cruise around in.

Its funny, my chevy was only available with an automatic, and I grew tired of it also, so I converted the car to a stick with a Viper spec T56 handling the shifting. Banging gears in a 4200lb car is a thing of beauty!
it takes a great deal to get a impala into the 11 range. congrats... that thing is really heavy.... i had a 65 GTO, 389ci, 3-duece, 4-speed rock crusher and I only got into the high 11's w/ it.... had a 89 saleen mustang 306ci, tremec super TKO 5- speed and got into the high 10's on just motor.... had about 480 hp at the motor.... the TKO didn't last long and parts were a pain in the butt to get for it....but it got stolen, then recovered..... stripped, and burnt to the ground.... damn thieves..... anyways...nice car. oh...and the sl500 is a sweet ride... car fax the history
 

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Discussion Starter #6
frenaugo said:
Hi Eric

I have had several SL's and currently have a 55 AMG with the power pack which gives you de-restricted engine, bigger brakes Etc, this is probably the best one I have had but it is a lot of Dollars for you BHP.

The Pre 97 500sl are a fab. car and engine and some said the 119 engine is burst proof. The down side is that if you like performance tuning there is not a lot you can do unless you are handy with engine electronics as well as mechanics. In Europe they put out in standard from about 320BHP which is adequate to suprise most other road users and have top a speed limiter set at around 154MPH.

I have seen a lot of second hand ones and the things to look out for are more on the side of ancillaries like roof mech and canvas. seat motors heating, locking sys and don't forget the exhaust which is seriously expensive. All of these seem simple straight forward to sort out but in fact take lots of expensive spare parts and time, the engine on the other hand will probably be OK as long as it has been serviced regularly.


I have never seen one in Manual form and in fact dont think they make one in 500 form?
Thanks so much, thats great information. :) I think you are correct that they never made a manual sl500, only the 6 cylinder cars. As an open air roadster, I cant find a better deal.
 

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I run across a lot of them down here, I will see what I can find.......PM me with your price range and I will see what I can do. I can search the manheim auction for you too.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
rsduce said:
I run across a lot of them down here, I will see what I can find.......PM me with your price range and I will see what I can do. I can search the manheim auction for you too.
While I appreciate it, its not necessary. My family is in the business and I can shop at manheim as well, but thanks for such a gracious offer.
 
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