Tag Archives: 280SE 4.5

Fleet Update: Just Let It Go

2004 Matrix XRS

When I first started this missive, I was waiting for a call from a local independent repair shop to let me know Trinity, our 2004 Toyota Matrix XRS-6, could come home from her sleepover. She had a night away while waiting for gaskets and seals to stem the oil flow from her timing chain case. Said flow left a damp spot on the garage floor through which my four-year-old son could not possibly miss tromping on his way to climbing into my Mercedes.

“Wait a minute,” you’re thinking. “You actually paid regular humans to work on your car?” Continue reading

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Mercedes-Benz 280SE 4.5, briefly

W108 280SE 4.5

The San Francisco, California, public auto auction is not normally the place to discover a classic Mercedes sedan. Generally run across the block are tatty donation cars like battered Ford Escorts, crispy Nissans imported from rusty states, or smoke-belching Saab parts cars that will not pass the state’s Draconian emissions inspection.

Occasionally something interesting gets consigned, like a clean Porsche 914 or 1980s Maserati Quattroporte, but the reserve is always full retail. My friend Jake and I would always keep our eyes open for the rough gems, but more routinely found the generic garden boulders. Continue reading