Author Topic: should I go for 280 SE 6 cylinders of 8 cylinders  (Read 4069 times)

Mqueretin

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should I go for 280 SE 6 cylinders of 8 cylinders
« on: January 29, 2017, 10:02:54 »
Hllo there,

I'm envisaging the purchase of a 280 SE and have come across a number of interesting cars.  There are in Europe a number of 280SE with the 4.5 liter engine, which, as I understand it, was produced solely for the US (contrary to the 3.5, but this engine is not very frequent on the market).

Price wise, it does not seem that the liter makes much difference, particularly as the 4.5 liters cars are sold with US registration, which is a free ticket for a little bit of red tape before registration.

Should I go for a 6 or 8 cylinders engine ? Is the 8 cyl.  just 30% more trouble than the 6 cyl., or more if trouble is an exponential to the size of engines ?   what should I expect from a 8cyl and what would be the key checks to watch before buying ?

thanks for your advice.

Marc.
250 SL 1967
SL300 2010
2 CV citroën 1983


stickandrudderman

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Re: should I go for 280 SE 6 cylinders of 8 cylinders
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2017, 16:49:01 »
There's not much price difference (in saloons) between the 6 and 8 cylinder car but a V8 is a V8 and there's no getting away from the fact.
That said, the 6 cylinder ones are very nice cars to drive and when all is said and done you should follow the same mantra as you would if buying a pagoda: Buy the one that isn't rusty.

scoot

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Re: should I go for 280 SE 6 cylinders of 8 cylinders
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2017, 20:08:28 »
Exactly.  Buy the best one you can.  If it were me I would be asking (and answering) a different question -- SWB or LWB....   I can't imagine buying a W108 SWB because what's the point of having a "large" mercedes if it doesn't have lots of rear legroom? 
Scott Allen
'67 250 SL (early)
Altadena, California

m300cab

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Re: should I go for 280 SE 6 cylinders of 8 cylinders
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2017, 00:08:49 »
i think the short wheel base takes turns easier
also the 3.5 V8 has the sought after 4 speed transmission
Michael Parlato

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Re: should I go for 280 SE 6 cylinders of 8 cylinders
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2017, 04:20:12 »
Hi, I have owned a 1972 280SE 3.5 for about 2 years. It is a joy to drive especially with the 4 speed auto, power disc brakes and power steering. It had been looked after fairly well however I have replaced the front shocks (original) with bilsteins, the front suspension mounts, and the engine mounts. I also spent 2 days in the boot (trunk) cleaning and sanding it before having it repainted satin black, plus many other small replacements.

I am also going to replace the rear axle trailing arm rubbers front and back, in our winter down here.

My wife prefers riding in this to my 280SL, and our three grandkids love the backseat saying it is wider than the backseat in our Subaru grandwagon, although they couldn't figure out what the little "cupboards with chrome lids"  in the back doors were for, they were aghast to find that people actually smoked in cars back in the day!  They had also never seen window winders (regulators) before!

I know a guy who owned one of these back in the day then bought the next model 1973 280SE 4.5 with a 3 stage auto, brand new and still owns it. It is immaculate but he regrets going to a 4.5 L with a 3 stage auto saying it was a retrograde step
1969 280 SL Manual gear shift
1972 280SE 3.5 auto