A wonderful W124 Mercedes Benz E Class estate, from the era of legendary Mercedes build quality.
At a glance:
- Mercedes 200TE 2.0 litre automatic estate.
- Original specification
- 5 Seat Version
- Optional Factory Extras: Sunroof and ABS
- 144,249 miles
- Lots of service history
- Just serviced
- Exceptionally clean interior with immaculate zebrano wood trim
- MOT to July 2018 with no advisories
- HPI Clear
These were magnificent cars from Mercedes-Benz; German over-engineering from the time when Mercedes-Benz built cars to the ultimate specification, rather than to a budget. The W124 E class, or S124 TE estate in this instance, was a beautifully engineered and very expensive mid sized model. In its day was probably the best engineered estate car money could buy. The W124 models replaced the W123 models after 1984. Due to the high cost of German engineering and build quality, the W124 was designed to last hundreds of thousands of miles, with awards actually given and worn by high mileage versions. The R129 SL Roadster was also based on the W124 platform. Much of the 124's engineering and many of its features were advanced automotive technology at the time, including innovations that were later adopted throughout the automotive industry.
The history of this car:
The car was first registered in February 1991, and has had only 6 owners spanning 27 years. From 2000 to 2016 it was owned by a gentleman from Esher and carried the elite registration number plate ‘FPD 1’ for those 16 years.
This car is the 200 TE in rare white with contrasting light grey lower door mouldings, coupled with a blue cloth interior and zebrano wood trim. The car comes with 4 speed switchable automatic gearbox, original Blaupunkt radio cassette, electric windows, central locking, ABS as standard and optional (working) sunroof.
According to online sources, at the end of 2017 there were only 78 of these 200TE models still taxed on UK roads, which means this car is increasingly rare and desirable.
This car has covered a relatively low 144,249 miles (at time of writing) which seems commensurate with the minimal wear and good condition, indicated also by previous MOTs from every year between 2006 at 54,653 miles to 2017 at 144,113 miles. This is an average of under 5,500 miles per annum. I have seen these estates having covered over 400,000 miles, so this mileage is relatively low.
Unfortunately the original Mercedes service history book was lost (apparently in a house move) by a previous owner. However, there are receipts for 19 services from 2000 - 2016 which indicate this car was very well maintained during much of its life. There is a folder full of receipts, servicing and repairs, including new replacement front wings (as they do tend to rust) and the wings are still in great condition. The condition of the interior also suggests that this is a car that has been cherished and cared for over the years. It is extremely rare to find w124s of this age with smoothly operating sunroof and working central locking, which also indicates it must have been very well maintained by previous owners as these tend to be the main things which tend to be non-functioning on neglected cars.
The car has also just had the benefit of a fresh 12,000 mile annual service, so it is ready for collection and immediate use by the next owner.
On the Road:
These cars drive exceptionally well, even after 28 years, which is testament to their superb build quality. The car starts swiftly without hesitation and cruises well, effortlessly wafting along to the muted burble from the engine. The automatic gearbox changes as expected and operates smoothly. The car has a very solid German feel and is very engaging to drive, whilst easily keeping up with modern traffic. The speedometer appears accurate and the car is capable of covering long journeys with ease. It’s a very pleasing experience driving a car of this quality on either short or long journeys. The power assisted steering is precise yet light and the view over the bonnet of the Mercedes badge above the chrome grille gives a great degree of satisfaction when wafting from A to B in style.
These modern classic estates are durable, practical, dependable and enjoyable. Great for families, dog walkers, or those wishing to move large objects from one place to another. These W124 estates do it all, and seemingly go on forever, like an old faithful family friend. The seats are comfortable and supportive, suspension is very smooth and the car is a joy to own and enjoy. These cars can be used for everyday commuting if required, as reliable family transport, or just for pleasure as a weekend treat - by being capable of either these cars are a brilliant all-rounder.
Original engine line-up spanned 2 litre, 2.3 litre, 2.8 litre and 3 litre, and some (slightly agricultural) diesels, the petrol four cylinder 200 probably has the best fuel economy, estimated at up to around 34mpg.
The engine has been regularly serviced, with a recently replaced distributor cap, rotor and leads, has a good Varta battery, fires up swiftly as expected and runs at the correct temperature with excellent oil pressure.
The gearbox is four speed switchable automatic. It changes gear smoothly and quietly and performs as it should.
Sold with MOT until July 2018 with no advisories.
The interior is in excellent condition for its age with no significant wear. The cloth upholstery is in amazing condition for the age of the car, clean and virtually unmarked, with 4 original clean Mercedes floor mats protected by the original ‘indestructible’ genuine Mercedes ribbed cord over-mats. The only indication of any wear is on the driver’s seat bolster (which do tend to wear out) and this has been patched with similar blue material. The interior really is a lovely place to be, and there are no signs of children or animals, which is fairly unusual as these cars do tend to be well used as family and pet transportation, not so this car. Everything on the car appears to work exactly as it should, windows, sunroof, dash, controls etc. The central locking also works perfectly; on all doors and the boot, which is rare for these 1980/90s vacuum operated systems. The car has recent new tyres all round, with a good spare, plus the original jack and first aid kit.
As can be seen from the photographs the car is extremely clean, tidy and well presented for its age. It’s always difficult to express in words the condition of any car, and most people have differing opinions about condition, so the best way to get a true impression will be to view this lovely car in person.
I’m confident that anybody with realistic expectations will be delighted to own and enjoy this modern classic.
The original price of these cars was eye wateringly high, largely due to the high build costs and the over engineering which built Mercedes reputation for quality. These cars are appreciating in value from around £1000 for an example requiring restoration or with rocket ship mileage, up to an astonishing £17,995 for a 30,000 mile mint example currently being offered for sale by a classic car dealer. A 1988 model with 192,116 miles recently sold at auction for £3,834.
The general value range for these cars in good, road worthy and presentable condition with sensible mileage and long MOT is normally £2,000 - £6,000 with immaculate showroom examples priced considerably higher. This car is offered to sell swiftly at a tempting £3250.
This is really attractive ‘feel good’ modern classic, being practical, durable and hugely enjoyable. Prices are rapidly appreciating and the W124 E Class is starting to rise in value as it predecessor the W123 model has done. There are fewer ‘good ones’ left, so this is a rare and exciting opportunity. This is one of the very well maintained cars which has not been abused or overused and really will be a delight for the next owner. I really love the condition, immaculate interior and extremely smooth drive of this particular car, and I’m sorely tempted to keep it for my collection, but common sense must prevail. I can’t keep all of the cars I deal with, but if I could put just a few into storage to appreciate for the next 10 years, this would be one of them!