1986 Mercedes-Benz S-Class 420 SEL 4.2, 8 cylinder from North America
Great ride - Classy Car
Replaced tire rod
Passenger power head rest not working.
1986 Mercedes 42OSEL.
I brought my 1986 Mercedes 420 SEL on EBay last week. It was good looking and very clean. I believe it has been refurbished recently. My sister (a car insurance adjuster) showed me where 2 panels had been replaced (OEM) but still said it’s a keeper.
It has 98,000 miles on it and drives like new, and yes almost smells new. It’s gold with dark brown interior. It’s my first Merc., I’ve always wanted a 420/560 SEL 89-91. When I was young this is what “Doctors” drove. (The M.D. kind of doctors) But this 86’ just looked so nice I had to buy it. I’ve driven, and still drive Buicks for the last 12yrs. (LeSabre/Park Ave.)
That said – I love this 420 SEL. I got it inspected and had $1,400 in repairs done (Tire rod replaced, add Freon, and some other small mechanical things). The car rode great even before the repairs. It is slow to get moving, but once it is moving it flies smoothly.
Press on the gas and it moves right then and there. I hardly feel the gears shift. Passing is no problem, even enjoyable. Passengers don’t even notice the car is changing speed.
The cabin is so quiet. Not hearing typical traffic sounds and road noise is nice.
The inside feels regal, boxy, and safe. I feel protected from the outside world.
Even the glass windows seem different, thicker, and clearer.
It is a 20 year old car, but still has safety feature of newer cars (Driver/passenger side airbags, ABS, automatic door locking, outside temperature reading, gas economy gauge, power driver and passenger seats). It is a head turner. People ask about it, look in to see who is driving. Even when you pull next to a Merc. 180,280, E320 etc. people look over like “now that’s a real Mercedes”.
I’ve researched and watched these models for 2 years. I would definitely recommend buying as a second or third car. Don’t pay more than say $8,900 for a 91’. Buy from someone you know or a dealer. No private party would get rid of these cars just because. They have either put money in it and it still needs work or there is something expensive wrong. Maybe you will still buy it, but pay less, you’ll need the savings for repairs. At least a dealer will go through the trouble of making the car road worthy. (I drove mine from the dealer in Missouri to Maryland 900 miles without a test drive around the block).
Price in very good condition = $4,500-$8,900 for 86’-91’
Last thing – Gas. All this talk of gas - @ $3.20/gal., +/- $60 to fill (from near empty). I used 2.5 tanks Missouri to Maryland 890 miles. = 356 miles/tank. 23.8 gal. tank = 14.95 miles/gal. So drive on weekends, long distances, and special occasions and ENJOY.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 3rd August, 2006
I just drove my 1987 420 SEL 220 miles on 10.1 gallons.76mph cruise control.
Regarding poor gas mileage: If you find yourself getting 14/15 mpg on a long distance trip, you are either averaging about 120 mph or experiencing a problem with your engine.
Assuming you have no glowing "check engine" light pestering you, and your tires are holding proper air pressure, I would suggest you perform a leak down test on the engine, check the spark plugs, rotor cap (s) and timing. 'Cus something's not right here. Maybe your gas tank/fuel line has a slight leak?