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Raptelan's 1974 450SE

Author Topic: Raptelan's 1974 450SE  (Read 8486 times)

Hemersam

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #15 on: 01 November 2011, 03:33 PM »
Anyone who looks for decent gas mileage from a 116 (any 116, including the diesel) is engaging in a fruitless search. It's much like the saying: "you can't have your cake and eat it, too." So, enjoy the 116 for the qualities it has (which are many) and try not to think about the lousy mlileage. That's how I live happily with mine.
Hemersam
P.S. Yes, the bamboo interiors are gorgeous! I just bought an Anthracite Gray '77 300D which has bamboo in great shape; I bought two yards of it from World Upholstery and a local upholstery shop did some repairs/replacement; they did a great job and the interior looks really nice. I am happy so far.

Big_Richard

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #16 on: 01 November 2011, 03:50 PM »
If propane or natural gas conversions and fuel are easily available in the land of the USA it could be an option for "gassers"

for the diesels, waste vegetable oil conversions here in Australia aren't very popular for some reason and most cafe's and restaurants who change the oil on a weekly basis in their fryers actually PAY for it to be removed on a monthly basis in 44 gallon drums.

If i ever change employment and need to pay for my own car/fuel again I would certainly look at going down this route as I'd have WVO coming out of my ears  in hundreds of drums  :o
« Last Edit: 01 November 2011, 03:56 PM by Major Tom 6.9 »

Casey

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #17 on: 01 November 2011, 05:44 PM »
Anyone who looks for decent gas mileage from a 116 (any 116, including the diesel) is engaging in a fruitless search. It's much like the saying: "you can't have your cake and eat it, too." So, enjoy the 116 for the qualities it has (which are many) and try not to think about the lousy mlileage. That's how I live happily with mine.

With the 300SD, I *did* both have and eat cake.  It's my cake, who are you to say I can't eat it all if I want to?? ;)  I had performance nearly as good as the 450 (most notably acceleration performance once already rolling at 50-60mph was not as good), a top speed pretty much as fast as I care to go, all the qualities of any other non-LWB W116, and 25-30mpg, which, for the record, is all I've gotten out of the 59hp 200D (though haven't been driving it as it needs attention).  Sure, this doesn't rival newer hybrid cars or even my '76 240D, but I never felt that driving the 300SD was a bad deal at all.

Love the sound of the V8 though, and the 50-100 acceleration is nice. :)

Casey

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #18 on: 01 November 2011, 05:49 PM »
If propane or natural gas conversions and fuel are easily available in the land of the USA it could be an option for "gassers"

The fuel I think is easy enough to come by.  Not sure how a conversion is done or how much cheaper the fuel cost would be, though.

Quote
for the diesels, waste vegetable oil conversions here in Australia aren't very popular for some reason and most cafe's and restaurants who change the oil on a weekly basis in their fryers actually PAY for it to be removed on a monthly basis in 44 gallon drums.

Here we put people in jail for years for the horrible, horrible crime of waste oil theft:
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24729484/ns/us_news-environment/t/used-cooking-oil-stolen-biodiesel-pirates/#.TrCTN92vH34
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/14/cooking-oil-theft-arlington_n_1010612.html
http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?section=news/local/los_angeles&id=8153250

It's pretty damn funny, really, what our law enforcement folks waste their time on...  Meanwhile we spend "millions each year to dislodge fats, oils and grease clogging the sewers".  I've only ever run regular diesel, but when I had the 240D and lived in Atlanta a guy was selling biodiesel from peanut oil for less than $0.50/gallon, until the government shut him down claiming that this wasn't approved for use as fuel due to emissions concerns.  Now it's pretty much the same price as regular diesel, and hard to find.
« Last Edit: 01 November 2011, 06:01 PM by Raptelan »

jbrasile

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #19 on: 01 November 2011, 06:38 PM »
Well, I'd say as far as fuel  economy with the exception  of the 300SD and non US 280SE's, all other 116's will be gas hogs no matter what.

We in the US got short changed with the 280SE because our cars only had 137 to 140 hp and never got more than 18-20 mpg, whereas in Europe an unrestricted 280SE had 185hp DIN and was good for 25mpg at 100-110 kph. MB's solution.... the 300SD... same performance as a US 280SE (actually better...) and close to 30 mpg, so for the States the best compromise between performance and fuel efficiency is no doubt the 300SD.

As for the the 450, again US cars got hurt big time because of emissions, the 1980 M117 is actually pretty good, on the highway at steady speeds I have seen 25-26mpg with the a/c off doing  60mph. Torque on the O2 equipped 450's (only 160hp...) is very decent too.

Early D-Jet US M117's deliver terrible gas mileage, so so performance and 75 cars have the dreaded cats on the exhaust manifold responsible for virtually frying everything under the hood.... no wonder MB went to K-Jet and an under the floor cat in 76.

One may ask... what about the 350's and 280S?

350: Great cars, the availability of a 4 speed manual makes them super desirable in my opinion, however they are marginally better than 280SE's in the performance department and not exactly frugal on fuel.

280S: Euro versions are quite good but they don't offer a lot of performance and gas mileage is pretty close to a 350. US versions if fully original with all the smog equipment will be as bad as a 450 on fuel and with only 120hp they can't do much...

So what I am trying to say is that if one is concerned with gas mileage and still wants decent power in the US the 300SD is the best option. For the rest of the world the 280SE is probably the best compromise, hence it being the best selling version of all 116's.

Tks,

Joe

« Last Edit: 01 November 2011, 06:56 PM by jbrasile »

Casey

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #20 on: 01 November 2011, 06:55 PM »
Joe,

Can the US-spec cars be modified to be equal or close to their european counterparts?  I'd like to undertake that if possible...

I don't believe the 350's were available in the US and have only ever seen one euro import for sale.

Can the D-Jet 450's be converted to K-Jet and/or EFI?

jbrasile

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #21 on: 01 November 2011, 07:04 PM »
Casey,

Stork has completely desmoged his 280S and the results were excellent! That can be done to a 450 as well but they involve replacing the exhaust manifolds, part of the exhaust system, getting rid of the smog pump, EGR and some vacuum switches, etc... still, you won't get 225hp because US cars were 8.0:1 compression and Euro's were 9:1 if I am not mistaken. Since most of the parts to do the conversion are not available used in the US, I suspect it would be an expensive project. You can resort to e-bay in Germany or other countries in Europe but sometimes people don't like to ship overseas.

All 350's are gray market imports and I have seen maybe 1 car that was a stick advertised a long time ago.

There is information here in the Forum about using different FI systems on D-Jet cars, so it is possible to modify them, I believe Megasquirt makes a kit.

Tks,

Joe


s class

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #22 on: 02 November 2011, 12:15 AM »
I feel sorry for the blokes with smogged versions.  Here in South Africa all MB's were full euro spec.  I have the 185hp 280SE euro as my daily driver.  Its very well sorted, every 200 000km I fit new injectors, ignition components etc, and I always keep valve clearances and basic tuneup on the mark.  It has bags of bottom end torque, and will cruise happily at 150km/h fully loaded with family and camping gear.  At those sorts of speeds, I get 13.5litres per 100km consumption. 

The 450's are much thirstier.  My euro spec 450SL can use 20 litres per 100km if I use it 'enthusiastically'.  In fact, the 6.9s aren't any worse than the 450. 

I used to lust after 350's but I too have found that they offer little performance benefit over a 280, and come with a stiff fuel consumption penalty compared to the 280. 

'76 6.9 Euro, '78 6.9 AMG, '80 280SE, '74 350SE, '82 500SEL euro full hydro, '83 500SEL euro full hydro , '81 500SL

pompy

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #23 on: 02 November 2011, 12:19 AM »
My late '79 350 SE A/T wasn't bad on long distance trips. The best I ever got was 8km to a litre of fuel (sorry boys - you'd have to do the mpg thing your selves!) at a true 120km/h over 350 kms with all my earthly belongings packed on the backseat and in the boot. That is excellent IMO.
Otherwise it averaged 7,5km/l on long trips
1991 500 SE EURO

TJ 450

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #24 on: 02 November 2011, 04:31 AM »
My late '79 350 SE A/T wasn't bad on long distance trips. The best I ever got was 8km to a litre of fuel (sorry boys - you'd have to do the mpg thing your selves!) at a true 120km/h over 350 kms with all my earthly belongings packed on the backseat and in the boot. That is excellent IMO.
Otherwise it averaged 7,5km/l on long trips
That seems almost impossible... good work! I think the 350 is at its best at those speeds.

I agree with the sentiments here. Poor fuel economy is the nature of the beast when it comes to "smogged" cars, even four cylinders, although there are quite a few "buts".

And, yes, I noticed very little difference going from the low compression 450 to the 6.9 in terms of fuel economy.

A Euro 280 is a good compromise on paper...

But yes, a good tune up will bring a huge improvement in mileage to the 450, I would think. The better it runs, the better the economy will be. There is a catch though, everything needs to be in top shape. Check the air filter as well.

A worn timing chain will equate to poor economy/performance as well, if you haven't checked it already, now is the time.

Tim

PS; I was unaware that the US 450 was below 200hp... That is a serious performance loss. :(
1976 450SEL 6.9 1432
1969 300SEL 6.3 1394
2003 ML500

1980sdga

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #25 on: 02 November 2011, 04:52 AM »
I cut my teeth on old smogged US iron *sigh*...

The low compression was the killer. Once that was addressed those old motors would wake up nicely.  Having said that, 8:1 engines respond well to forced induction as long as the motor will hold up to the extra power  8)

A de-smogged, turbo charged, EFI M110 would be tasty...
Jon


Little by little I have grown fond of the infamous Auto Temp II we have in our 116's

TJ 450

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #26 on: 02 November 2011, 05:02 AM »
1980sdga,

I agree... The low compression engines are excellent candidates for forced induction.

I don't want to go off-topic, but I have some ideas for the M110. I'll mention something about that in another topic at another time.

Tim
1976 450SEL 6.9 1432
1969 300SEL 6.3 1394
2003 ML500

jbrasile

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #27 on: 02 November 2011, 06:46 AM »
450's only exist because of the US.... after trying to certify the M116 3.5 to meet US regulations for 1973, MB came to the conclusion that power would be reduced to a level that would make a top of the line Mercedes simply impossible to market in North America, so the solution was to increase the displacement to 4.5 liters, hello 450SE/SEL and SL/SLC... Europeans liked the idea and starting in 74 450's became available to the rest of the world.

Interestingly enough, early 107's (72 and early 73) destined for America never had the 3.5 liter engine even though their trunk badges said 350SL/SLC, they all came with the M117 4.5 rated at 190hp SAE. I heard that when the cars were new and went in for service, dealers would replace the trunk emblem with the 450SL/SLC insignia which was not available until mid 73.

A well tuned pre 80 US 450 should deliver 17-18 mpg on the highway, an euro like my 78 450SEL with low compression will do 3.8km/l in town with Sao Paulo's horrific traffic... and 7 km/l at 120kph on the highway. I have noticed that even when I push the car into 160-170 for short periods during long trips avg fuel consumption does not drop below 6.5 km/l

Funny you guys mentioned the 6.9, from experience using the 77 car we restored prior to delivery, it will do 3.5 in town and 6-6.5 on the highway, a very small penalty considering the extra torque and hp of the M100

Tks,

Joe



1980sdga

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #28 on: 02 November 2011, 07:43 AM »
450's only exist because of the US.... after trying to certify the M116 3.5 to meet US regulations for 1973, MB came to the conclusion that power would be reduced to a level that would make a top of the line Mercedes simply impossible to market in North America, so the solution was to increase the displacement to 4.5 liters, hello 450SE/SEL and SL/SLC... Europeans liked the idea and starting in 74 450's became available to the rest of the world.

Interestingly enough, early 107's (72 and early 73) destined for America never had the 3.5 liter engine even though their trunk badges said 350SL/SLC, they all came with the M117 4.5 rated at 190hp SAE. I heard that when the cars were new and went in for service, dealers would replace the trunk emblem with the 450SL/SLC insignia which was not available until mid 73.


Tks,

Joe

That's cool  8)  So basically they had to build a bigger engine to drive the smog stuff and still move the car  :o
Jon


Little by little I have grown fond of the infamous Auto Temp II we have in our 116's

jbrasile

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Re: Raptelan's 1974 450SE
« Reply #29 on: 02 November 2011, 09:30 AM »
Hehehe.... yep.... that's pretty much it... the M116 3.5 is quite a nice and revvy engine but its peak torque is at 4000rpm so it doesn't have the more "American" low end  torque characteristics that the M117 does, in fact if you drive a 350SE or SL and then jump into a 450 you'd think you are driving a completely different car! The difference is even more pronounced if you go back one generation to the 108/109 with the 3.5 vs a 4.5, in that case the 4 speed automatic in the 3.5 liter makes a huge impact too.

Tks,

Joe