Went from an '89 430 to a '99 420s in late September. Am astonished by all the features and how beautifully this 10 year old car was built. Although I find the brake pedal a bit soft and it travels a little too far...was told by a mechanic that this is normal? Changed the almost worn back brake pads and the pedal now feels closer to normal. Will also bleed the line for trapped air bubbles. May put a little extra air in the tires to see if it improves cornering/handling. Undoing the negative lead on the battery will render the radio inoperable (anti theft feature) and you will have to get the "code" from Mercedes. Must read the owners manual to understand how everything works.
Everything was intelligently thought out. It's going to take a while to learn how to use many of the amazing features available in this car. It's over the top luxury but nothing you don't really like or want
Taking a leap from an '89SEL to a "99 420s is a little like going from a log cabin to the taj-mahal.There's nothing the engineers haven't considered and included in this remarkable car. Built ten years ago, but right up there with almost anything on the road today.
I just bought my 2nd German car. My current daily driver is a 99 W140 S320. The car came from the 2nd owner who had receipts for $22000 in maintenance and repairs over the 6 years he'd owned it!!, for a car that cost the original owner $80,000+ in '99 dollars! It is 16 very pampered years old; i.e - high octane fuel , 4 transmission flushes, 4+ power steering , brake and coolant flushes, head gasket replaces with machined head, ( way too many leaks, some suspension parts replaced, window regulator, seat belt replaced and I love driving it no doubt. But MB and BMW are going to lose the war and I am sad to conclude that. If you put $100,000 into a Japanese car say a Lexus LS420 and it will give you a car that will perform differently but as well - give or take .2 seconds and never, EVER break down. I have owned a Toyota Avalon XLS ( my first non-Lexus in 20 years with 256000 miles that felt, drove like new but gave ( these are things that Merc, could see fit to give you for $80,000: a compass, date, detonation time, avg mpg, current mpg, one touch seat memory, auto headlights, retractable windows and sunroof if any come in contact with an object, 30 MPG, a trunk that opened every time from the remote or the dash - not just on and off. - I LOVE DRIVING THE W140) - But come on boys - light up the location of the headlight switch, put the effen window controls in the same location on the driver door and for that much $$ - make things LAST! I WANT you to win top place but at 130,000 miles and being the S Klasse - flagship with a rumoured BILLION dollars on R&D that breaks down like a VW or a Ford - I see absolutely no reason for it. This is what will decide me: if I have to drop another $22000 to get it another 100000 miles I will have to go back. I place a high premium on reliability. For now - I am in fact in love with my S320. - I will update that love affair in a couple years.
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