Extreme Change

My mechanic said it was time to retire the trusty MKIV GTI - oh how I miss that torque steer! Wanting a not-small coupe, I researched and test drove until I settled on the Mercedes E-class coupe.

The 350 was nice, but the 550 was the ticket for any jalop - 385 hp, gobs of torque served up on demand when you hit the sport button, somewhat rare, and a good record for reliability.

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In August I found the perfect one - 27K, one owner, Florida car, trade-in at a BMW dealer who had gone over the car. Negotiated what I thought was a fair price for a P2 package car in perfect (and I mean, perfect brand new condition) shape, with new shoes on it: $34K

Illustration for article titled Extreme Change
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7K later and no troubles, apart from that pesky reckless driving charge. My shop went over it and declared it perfect (former dealership mechanic).

A few tips for prospective buyers: the 7 sp slushbox is the weak link. Get it flushed at 38K miles, not the 50K recommended. And when test driving look for a clunk when shifting - that’s a sign of excessive wear.

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Swap out the double-blade grill for the SLS style one you see in my pic - really updates the look.

Swap out the front orange side markers for black - a little thing, but it really smooths out the look on a black car.

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Oh yeah, and don’t do 103 in a 65. Off to court next week.

My first post, hope you liked it. Keep on jalopin’ ladies and gents.

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