This 30-year old Mercedes-Benz W124 500E has surely seen better days. But that was decades ago. Does it still have it 30 years after it rolled off the assembly line?
The sports sedan drove through the factory gates in 1992. It came with a 5.0-liter V8 engine that churned out, when brand-new, 326 PS (315 HP) and 470 Nm (347 lb-ft) of torque. Mercedes used the M119 V8 petrol engine between 1989 and 1999. Back then it was available with three displacements. The 4.2-liter unit equipped the entry-level version. There was the mid-range 5.0-liter that we’re now dealing with and the range-topping 6.0-liter power mill.
Does the car still have the vigor of its heyday? We won’t know until it hits the dynamometer. But for the moment, it just hits the autobahn to prove its current worth.
TopSpeedGermany took the sedan out on the German motorway, in a no-speed limit sector.
A heavy leg on the throttle and the speedometer reads 240 km/h (149 mph). A second attempt – as unbelievable as it may seem – takes that yellow needle all the way to 250 km/h (155 mph). But there is something bothering the test driver. There is a BMW 5 Series that just won’t move out of the way. The Mercedes is inching closer and nearly sticks its front end into the boot of the Bimmer. But the driver of the BMW seems to think it’s some payback time. He’s probably sure he’s dealing with some jalopy. So he does anything but show some respect for the three-pointed star veteran.
The Mercedes driver is tempted to overtake him by going from the third lane into the second. But there are slow cars driving there. When the speedometer of the 500E shows 260 km/h, the BMW finally gives up. He probably lost momentum. And sure is going to have a nightmare tonight. A nightmare in which a 30-year old Mercedes-Ben W124 500E is giving him hell on the autobahn.