Cars you drive - Ex-500.com - The home of the Kawasaki EX500 / Ninja 500R
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post #1 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 11:25 AM Thread Starter
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Cars you drive

I looked for an old car thread by couldn't find one.
Some of you might remember I recently purchased two old Mercedes Benz. One is a 1997 s500 sedan and the other a 1998 SL500 roadster.
I have run these cars daily for over a year with only normal maintenance.
I recently took the Sedan on an extended road trip to New England, we traveled almost 5000 miles. This car preformed faultlessly. What a pleasure to drive, it wold exceed any speed or roll over any hill in bad weather and did so with ease.
Even my wife could get up to speed without any warm up or adjusting.
I have had several Cadillac s , but this car out preformed them in every way. It is void of any gadgets or GPS screens or women talking to you, so much the better.
My point is , if you can see or understand quality. don't hesitate to purchase a bargin of an older Mercedes. These things are truly better.

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post #2 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 3:40 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

I dunno FOG, my father-in-law have a 1998 Mercedes, and even though the quality (then) is great, I would not want it due to the fact there is no way I could ever work on the thing.

We have a 2008 Jetta. I love it and i can work on it, and the ride and quality is upthere with the luxury cars.

The newer BMW's and Mercedes that we have looed at seem to have a lack of quality, not full leather, cheaper interior parts, ect.

My 1988 735i interior bacically fell apart, and I always garaged it and was meticouls on the preventative maintenance. It still just went to sh-t. Too many issues for that series car.

I'll stick with my Jetta, my 1998 Chevy truck and my 1976 280Z. I can work on all three and do 90% of the work on my own.

Get over it.
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post #3 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 3:59 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

My dad and I shared a 87 944S. It was a solid car with 120k on it. Had a surprising amount of torque and could run with stock 5.0 and 2v 4.6's in a straight line. Pretty much obliterated everything in the twisties. It was hard to work on. My dad did the work but I watched. At times I wish we still had it but selling it gave room for my Ninja so I can't complain.

I also have a 2011 Mazda3. It's a solid car as well. The ride quality isn't comfortable. It's rather sporty. It handles pretty well, now that I have a rear sway bar off a Mazdaspeed3, the back is stiff. If you push it hard enough you can feel the rear end want to come around. Keep in mind this a base model grocery getter so thats rather impressive to me.
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post #4 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 4:07 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

I currently drive a 1971 Grand Torino as my daily driver. I used to drive a 2002 Camaro 3.8 as my daily driver but it was totaled. I cant stand the issues that come with todays cars and how easily they dent and crush up. I may not get as great of gas mileage as I would like but its reliable, looks and sounds great, and I feel much safer driving in this then in my 02 Camaro that crumbled like a coke can when hit. As for comfort, neither car is considered a luxury vehicle. Personally I find the Grand Torino much more comfortable then the Camaro was.
post #5 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 4:12 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

1996 Ford Probe :P
I haven't driven it in months however

[quote author=rayycc1 link=topic=32747.msg487023#msg487023 date=1308913412]IMO there is three ways to end a friendship fast...lend a friend money...lend a friend a bike...or trust a friend with your GF. all 3 are recipes for disaster.[/quote]
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post #6 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 4:54 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

Quote:
Originally Posted by cole40
I currently drive a 1971 Grand Torino as my daily driver. I used to drive a 2002 Camaro 3.8 as my daily driver but it was totaled. I cant stand the issues that come with todays cars and how easily they dent and crush up. I may not get as great of gas mileage as I would like but its reliable, looks and sounds great, and I feel much safer driving in this then in my 02 Camaro that crumbled like a coke can when hit. As for comfort, neither car is considered a luxury vehicle. Personally I find the Grand Torino much more comfortable then the Camaro was.
Just because it crushes easily doesn't mean its "unsafe". The 944S felt way more solid than my Mazda. But its not even close to being safer. It didn't have airbags, its was unbelievably stiff, the crumple zones were minimal, etc. Some parts in modern cars are designed to crumple to absorb the impact. If my Mazda is hit head on, its designed so the engine drops down and doesn't come through the firewall. I guarantee my new tin can Mazda is safer than your land barge in any crash scenario. Do you think helmets are unsafe as they reduce peripheral vision too? Because thats about how ignorant your reply was.

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Previous: '95 EX500 - Yoshi 2-1, ducatiman carbs (stock jetting), FOG mod airbox

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post #7 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 5:28 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Cars you drive

You guy's are talking about junk, I mean good enough cars in their own right but not in the class of the Merc.
You got to talk RR or the Big Beamers. Even the Lexus don't equal this thing.
It has 130K miles and you can't tell it has any.
Stuff like the side windows are over 1/2" thick and have a notch of 1/4X1/4 to form a labyrinth seal, absolutely no wind noise at any speed.
The cruse control will even downshift to maintain the set speed going downhill. and the control in faultless.
The rear seats recline . by sliding the base forward. and they are heated as well.
On my SL the side windows automatically go down an inch when you open the door and then go back up when you shut it to keep the window seal over the glass. even the convertible is quiet at speed.
The s500 has a little handle on the rear trunk lid that retracts when you close the trunk. it's so you don't make finger prints on the rear deck.

And on and on

Trudey a different breed

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post #8 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 5:41 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

Quote:
Just because it crushes easily doesn't mean its "unsafe". The 944S felt way more solid than my Mazda. But its not even close to being safer. It didn't have airbags, its was unbelievably stiff, the crumple zones were minimal, etc. Some parts in modern cars are designed to crumple to absorb the impact. If my Mazda is hit head on, its designed so the engine drops down and doesn't come through the firewall. I guarantee my new tin can Mazda is safer than your land barge in any crash scenario. Do you think helmets are unsafe as they reduce peripheral vision too? Because thats about how ignorant your reply was.
If you say so pal. A few years ago I was hit by a drunk lady going 70 something mph, I was in my Grand Torino, I was stopped when she hit me. She hit my rear quarter pannel. It spun me a little and messed up the car pretty bad. BUT i was fine and was able to repair the car. A few weeks ago I was hit by a lady running a red light going around 50mph. I was in my 02 Camaro, SAME impact point rear quarter pannel. The entire rear end of my car was smashed off, the frame was mangled, there wasnt a chance of a frame swap or any saving. Now you can call me and my post ignorant all you want to but I know what I felt. And for the record, I WOULD NEVER RECOMMEND NOT WEARING A HELMET, thats just stupid.

And FOG, I see your point. Theres no way you can compare a camaro or such cars to a Beamer or a Mercedes. I drove a 2010 Mercedes CLK350 Convertible all summer in 2011. THAT is what you call a luxury car.
post #9 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 5:55 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

A 2002 Camaro shouldnt be what you base your assumptions off of. You're using the availability heuristic and even worse, with one example. Yes, that camaro is probably worse than your GT. One of my friends had an F Body fireibied 3.8. POS.

Money can't buy happiness. But it can buy a motorcycle. And you can't be sad on a motorcycle.

Previous: '95 EX500 - Yoshi 2-1, ducatiman carbs (stock jetting), FOG mod airbox

Current: '99 Speed Triple - Exhaust, K&N, self tuned
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post #10 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 6:00 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

Quote:
Originally Posted by FOG
You guy's are talking about junk, I mean good enough cars in their own right but not in the class of the Merc.
You got to talk RR or the Big Beamers. Even the Lexus don't equal this thing.
It has 130K miles and you can't tell it has any.
Stuff like the side windows are over 1/2" thick and have a notch of 1/4X1/4 to form a labyrinth seal, absolutely no wind noise at any speed.
The cruse control will even downshift to maintain the set speed going downhill. and the control in faultless.
The rear seats recline . by sliding the base forward. and they are heated as well.
On my SL the side windows automatically go down an inch when you open the door and then go back up when you shut it to keep the window seal over the glass. even the convertible is quiet at speed.
The s500 has a little handle on the rear trunk lid that retracts when you close the trunk. it's so you don't make finger prints on the rear deck.

And on and on

Trudey a different breed

FOG
To be honest, you have some of the finest cars produced. But Mercedes aint what it used to be recently. They're on the right track but they dun goofd for a while. I really want one of those 190e Cosworths.

Money can't buy happiness. But it can buy a motorcycle. And you can't be sad on a motorcycle.

Previous: '95 EX500 - Yoshi 2-1, ducatiman carbs (stock jetting), FOG mod airbox

Current: '99 Speed Triple - Exhaust, K&N, self tuned
'15 FJ09 - 2WheelDynoWorks ECU flash
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post #11 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 6:30 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Cars you drive

That was and is the point of my first post. Any old car is not what I meant to buy. But theses are very special. and the fact that you can buy them so cheap is amazing. All I hear from dissenters is the cost of repair. I'll argue that with the lack of frequency of repairs needed. Plus my Garage say's no difference except for parts. I just had complete new brake put on the SL for $740.00 that's rotors and all. about the same as a Caddy.
Some of the wrecker yard are trying to charge more for some used parts than the cost new. I don't know why.
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post #12 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 10:00 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

I'll stick with my 2010 ford focus haha. Going to run it into the ground
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post #13 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-27-2013, 11:18 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

is this the sort of thing your talking about FOG. my dads old car a 1997 bmw z3 as fresh as the day it was built. stilldrove like t was new at not a spec of rust. it was about 13 or 14 years old when that pic was taken. he now has a mazda mx5 the bmw needed a new roof which was expensive lol.







and em my car


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post #14 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-28-2013, 12:50 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Cars you drive

Yes the Z3 is in the category , a fine machine, but in My opinion desperately ugly, well maybe just homily. Then they doubled down on ugly with the Z4. Still fine machines if you put a bag over them.

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post #15 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-28-2013, 2:46 AM
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Re: Cars you drive

I do all my own work. All of it. Doesn't matter what the job is, how big it is, nor how complex. I won't own anything that I can't work on. I'm sorry to say that any modern Mercedes in in that class. I had a woman bring in a 2002 S500 a couple of months ago. Sure it was a nice car. It did all those neat things you wrote about too FOG. When it came down to it though, I couldn't do a thing with it besides charge the battery and read the codes stored in the computer. EVERYTHING had to be done by Mercedes. I looked at the Tech Service Bulletins on it and there were over 100. All referenced some Mercedes message that went to the dealerships. So, in order to track down what the company says is the correct fix, you have to be able to read those messages. Then they reference Mercedes specific lubricants to correct noisy power steering pumps....but there is no correlation between those lubricant nomenclatures and stuff you can actually buy. Only Mercedes can supply them. Then there is the ride control system. Did you know, Mercedes says to never replace any "shock absorbers" because they're actually hydraulic control units? Yep. There is a TSB out for that too. Apparently there is a pump somewhere on the car that pressurizes the hydraulic system and it uses a filter that you cannot source anywhere but from Mercedes. The "new" filter is a 1 micron filter versus the 10 micron filter that came from the factory. Not that you can find it, nor replace it anyway. So really, I could not own one. If I can't work on it, I'm damn sure not paying the going dealership rate out here for them to do it. FWIW, the local Mercedes dealership? $150 an hour labor rate. The brake job? I don't know what that books at, but I do brakes all the time. Complete with turning the rotors and everything. I certainly wouldn't hand over $740 for a brake job...not when it's my job. I had to send the S500 owner to the Mercedes dealer because nothing that was wrong with it was something I could fix. If that's the case, I'll never own one.

That said, we did own one, many years ago in Germany. It was a 1968 280SL. You could fit 4 adults across that back seat. It was a 4 door with real wood on the dash. It was a wonderful car to drive and ride in. Rolling down the autobahn it felt nice and plush but never like a land yacht. I drove it from the town we lived in down to Stuttgart and it was great. I wish we could have brought that one home...but it was European spec and wouldn't pass through customs. I can't imagine that it would be worth all that much today....but it was a great car and had such low mileage on it when we sold it. IIRC it was on 60K km. That was in the 1980s too.


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post #16 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-28-2013, 10:05 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Cars you drive

You can't fault the car for reasons of your competency. I too loved my Lotus for it's utter simplicity. Just 4 wheels and an engine.
But I don't work on cars anymore. Hell I don't even change the oil myself, when 20 bucks +oil gets someone else to do it.
In this day of sophisticated cars that make prodigious power cleanly you have to have technology. Learn to keep up or be left behind.
BTW there wasn't much good about the "Good ol days" I know I was there

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post #17 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-28-2013, 10:22 AM
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Re: Re: Cars you drive

I'll stick to bikes!
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post #18 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-28-2013, 11:53 AM
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Re: Cars you drive

FOG it is not a question of competence. It's a question of access. Access to information and access to special tools analyzers and chemicals. All that stuff is Mercedes proprietary and not available to the general public. And I drove a number old cars. I agree with on the whole good old days. That old 280SL was pretty impressive compared other 1968s I've driven. Not so much compared to that S500. But, I could work on that 68.


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post #19 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-28-2013, 12:26 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

Someday we will all be in robotic cars we won't own. they wull drive themselves and we will all pay a fee out of our salaries to pay for the use.

Part of the cashless society thing.

But first they have to get our guns away from us. That will be the first step.



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post #20 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-28-2013, 12:31 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

Shoot, my 735i cost $500 for a brake job, and it had to have new rotors when the pads were changed as you could not turn the rotors. And that was with me doing the work.

Like I said that 88 735i just started falling apart, even thought I could work on it, it just was not worth it. I'm no longer a fan of BMW's.

and FOG, I'll put my Jetta up there with the BMW and other higher costing cars. Quality has decreased with M or BMW.

For my life, it's just not worth the cost to own. Even if I had the money, I'd still keep my truck, Jetta and Z. I don't need all that stuff that you were saying.

All I really want is dual zone A/C, leather seats and seat heat with a good stero.



Get over it.
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post #21 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-28-2013, 12:57 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stuka87
I'll put my Jetta up there with the BMW and other higher costing cars.
VW must have come a long way since 2001 when I had a new Jetta TDI. That thing was a hunk of shit. Things falling off of it all the time. The icing on the cake was when the passenger side power window rolled down in the middle of January and wouldn't come back up. I called the VW dealer and they said it would be two weeks before they could schedule a service appt to fix it. Naturally, I raised a stink and got it fixed the next day. What kind of service writer would tell someone his wife and baby have to ride around in winter for two weeks with no window? Sold it 500 miles before the factory warranty expired.
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post #22 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-28-2013, 4:12 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

Quote:
Originally Posted by crazytalk
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stuka87
I'll put my Jetta up there with the BMW and other higher costing cars.
VW must have come a long way since 2001 when I had a new Jetta TDI. That thing was a hunk of shit. Things falling off of it all the time. The icing on the cake was when the passenger side power window rolled down in the middle of January and wouldn't come back up. I called the VW dealer and they said it would be two weeks before they could schedule a service appt to fix it. Naturally, I raised a stink and got it fixed the next day. What kind of service writer would tell someone his wife and baby have to ride around in winter for two weeks with no window? Sold it 500 miles before the factory warranty expired.
VW is getting better. I really like the new Golf R and I have high hopes for the next gen GTI. They need to up that 200 hp.

Money can't buy happiness. But it can buy a motorcycle. And you can't be sad on a motorcycle.

Previous: '95 EX500 - Yoshi 2-1, ducatiman carbs (stock jetting), FOG mod airbox

Current: '99 Speed Triple - Exhaust, K&N, self tuned
'15 FJ09 - 2WheelDynoWorks ECU flash
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post #23 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-28-2013, 5:11 PM
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Re: Cars you drive

i like the way the z3 looks inside and out it has a hint of british 70's sports car retro about it. the wheel arces lift up with the bonnet like the triumph spitfire.

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post #24 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-29-2013, 1:45 AM
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Re: Cars you drive

Quote:
Originally Posted by gary1365
i like the way the z3 looks inside and out it has a hint of british 70's sports car retro about it. the wheel arces lift up with the bonnet like the triumph spitfire.
I have a project for one of those I've been tossing around in my brain for a while. I'm thinking that I want that old British sports car feel but I want modern reliability, brakes and handling. If I can find one cheap, I think I want to try to transplant a Honda 4 cylinder into one. Complete with computer, injection, the whole schmear. Not sure about what I would do with the suspension and brakes....but I'm sure I could concoct something that will not only work, but work reliably well. I have a source for waterjet cutting to cut me an adapter to run the engine inline and bolt to the Triumph (or MG) transmission. I figure, it would have around 160 HP and weigh very little. The stock engine on those things only made around 80 or 90 HP so even with the stock Honda engine it would have nearly double what it started with. Given the physical size of the Honda engine it should fit just fine....after that it's just a matter of figuring out what to do for brakes. The last MGB I drove handled like it was on rails. For a car from the 1960s it handled better than anything I'd driven in the 1980s. It'll never be an M3 but it will be a more reliable old British sports car...and a cool project for me and my kid.


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post #25 of 394 (permalink) Old 6-29-2013, 10:05 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Cars you drive

Just by a Miata. You can turbo one to 300 HP or fit any number of engines from small block V8s to Rotary's. I often thought about putting a twin rotor Mazda R8 motor in mine.
Old English cars of the 60s just plane suck. They were made from junk put together by drunks, and not worth their weight is scrap metal.

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