Topic: Does my SL600 qualify?

Hey guys, I was doing the math on my recent 1997 SL600 purchase and if I were to sell the panoramic hardtop that came with the car I would be WELL under the $500 budget. Long story short car had a lot of electric problems and I talked the guy down to $1500. I have about $800 invested and it's pretty much perfect. Complete tune up and Trans rebuild. Unbeknownst to me the roof is extremely rare and worth about $3000. If I sell the hardtop I'd have all the paperwork to show the car is 100% legit. If I did this would I buried in penalty laps? The car is a no joke 160mph missile. I could sell this car tomorrow for $8K easy but I've always wanted to join the races. Thanks, Jim

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

Short answer - Yes.  The judges will welcome this and it's likely a Class C car the first time it shows up.

Longer answer - Yes but don't be scared off when someone brings up that the only car ever claimed in Lemons history was an S600.  In short, the team forced Jay to claim it because it had a history that made the car radioactive for any purpose and they wanted to get rid of it.  I guarantee they will not claim your car.

https://jalopnik.com/5410613/for-the-fi … -500-bucks

1990 RX7 "Mazdarita" 
1994 Jaguar XJ12 (Winner C-Class 2013 Sears Pointless)
1964 Sunbeam Imp (IOE 2013 Sears Pointless)
1980 Rover SD1 (I Got Screwed 2014 Return of Lemonites) (Sold -> Houston.  Gone and forgotten)

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

Honestly, $8k would buy yourself a nice pre-made Lemons car and finance your racing for a year.

--Rob Leone Schumacher Taxi Service
We won the IOE at Southern Discomfort.
We got screwed at The Real Hoopties of New Jersey  and we took cars down with us.
We got the curse at Capitol Offense but they wouldn't let us destroy the car.

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

it looks like it weighs 4453lbs, with a cage that would make it too heavy..
i agree with robL  cheaer better options

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

Go for it. I've run an S500 with an ever-changing cast of teammates for the past 5 yrs. The driveline/motor/brakes/supension of that era Benz are VERY stout. The electronic throttles x2 of the 600 v12 are known issues, but beyond that, apart from telling you to run SERIOUS brake fluid like Motul 660, there's not much to recommend against trying it.

For the record, although once classed A, we have always been put in B with no laps...

#88-Hong Kong Cavaliers Benz S500: formerly known as OMG Racing #140...
Judges Choice and Regional Award winner! Chuckwalla '12, Buttonwillow '13, BFE GP '15, Miller '14 & '15, Sonoma '13,'14,'15,'17. Inde '16,17. Other foolishness: Finisher of the inaugural Lemons Rally, in the black Jag.... and IOE in the Super Snipe back in '12.

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

nimblemotorsports wrote:

it looks like it weighs 4453lbs, with a cage that would make it too heavy..
i agree with robL  cheaer better options

The rules say 4,200 Manufacturer stated curb weight. So it would need a waiver no matter, but an 1997 SL600? Old german V-12? I suspect a waiver would be granted.

But cripes that thing is heavy!

Mistake By The Lake Racing (MBTL)
88 Thunderbird "THUNDERBIRDS ARE GO!"
A&D: 2014 Sebrings at Sebring (NSF), 2014 NJMP2 Jurassic Park (SpeedyCop), 2012 Summit Point J30 (PiNuts)

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

assuming for a second you're serious, yes, you could use that car. But be prepared to be beaten by 80's imports with 110hp or less 4 bangers. Many of them.

There are things you can sell off to make up cost. That's how we justified our 2008 Saab. The car was worth $1000 (a lot of fancy features were broken at 254k miles), and we sold off $500+ of interior and other bits.

The question is if you'd want to. You'd have a car that is hugely expensive to fix when things break (and german "stoutness" or not it will break eventually). It's not a car that will ever win. It's very heavy which means you'll be pouring money into brakes and tires. If none of that bothers you, then sure, run it. But like the suggestion above if it was me I'd sell the car for the 8k you mention and use that to fund a year of racing with a cheaper (and faster) car.

19 Time Loser FutilityMotorsport
Turbo Dodge Powered E36 Build
2008 Saab 9-5Aero Wagon
Retired - 1989 Dodge Daytona Shelby 2011-2015 "Lifetime Award for Lack of Achievement" IOE, 3X I got screwed, Organizer's Choice

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

yes, BUT you can only go to zero. Out 84 Trans Am was more than $500, but I sold well over 1k in parts so we start at zero.

"get up and get your grandma outta here"

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

Yes, it will qualify, but don't be surprised if it's not as fast as a lot of "lesser" cars.

Quad4 CRX - Wartburg 311 - Civic Wagovan - Parnelli Jones Galaxie - LS400 - Lancia MR2 - Boat - Sentra - 56 Ford Victoria
Known Associate of 3pedal Mafia, Speedycop, and the Russians.  Maybe even NSF.

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

I dunno, we won C with a 4200lb XJ12 at one might be the toughest track to do so on (Sears Point).  Why run something boring that is like what everyone else runs? (says the guy with the RX7).  If Sisyphus wants to race a V12 M-B, who are we to say he shouldn't?

1990 RX7 "Mazdarita" 
1994 Jaguar XJ12 (Winner C-Class 2013 Sears Pointless)
1964 Sunbeam Imp (IOE 2013 Sears Pointless)
1980 Rover SD1 (I Got Screwed 2014 Return of Lemonites) (Sold -> Houston.  Gone and forgotten)

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

To be clear, I won't ever tell someone not to race something. I was just laying out some expectations if that's the car of choice. Some people are looking for weird challenges, and some are looking for supreme domination with little work, and some are looking to go racing in a car that costs very little to maintain. Each goal requires a different type of car.

19 Time Loser FutilityMotorsport
Turbo Dodge Powered E36 Build
2008 Saab 9-5Aero Wagon
Retired - 1989 Dodge Daytona Shelby 2011-2015 "Lifetime Award for Lack of Achievement" IOE, 3X I got screwed, Organizer's Choice

12 (edited by chaase 2018-01-18 01:40 PM)

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

Hussler wrote:

Hey guys, I was doing the math on my recent 1997 SL600 purchase and if I were to sell the panoramic hardtop that came with the car I would be WELL under the $500 budget. Long story short car had a lot of electric problems and I talked the guy down to $1500. I have about $800 invested and it's pretty much perfect. Complete tune up and Trans rebuild. Unbeknownst to me the roof is extremely rare and worth about $3000. If I sell the hardtop I'd have all the paperwork to show the car is 100% legit. If I did this would I buried in penalty laps? The car is a no joke 160mph missile. I could sell this car tomorrow for $8K easy but I've always wanted to join the races. Thanks, Jim

If I am reading it correctly, you have $2300 into the car and can sell the hard top for $3000.  If you want to build the car, then do it. Even if you get penalty laps, who cares. Most teams never win a race and, unless the car completely dominates, the penalty laps will be gone next race when the judges realizes how terrible the car really is.

1992 Saturn SL2 (retired) - Elmo's Revenge -  Class B winner, Heroic Fix winner x2
1969 Rover P6B 3500S - Super G-Rover - I.O.E Winner, Class C Winner
1996 Saturn SW2 - Elmo's Revenge

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

Interesting responses I never thought about the weight. Would stripping it to reduce the weight let it qualify or does it go by the titled weight? It doesn't sound like you guys think the car would be very competitive, I'm not looking to win anything but getting passed by Saturns and neons would probably make me feel pretty stupid for cutting up such a nice car...

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

When I drive, I get passed by almost every B and A classed car.

But, We have had drivers with extensive track experience run laps nose to tail with the Eyesore Miata in the same car. Once you've got a decent amount of HP and brakes, (an SL600 has plenty of both) its who's behind the wheel.

Shoot an email to John Pagel and get a ruling on the weight, I wouldn't sweat it... There have been at least  3 w140 S class cars in Lemons, (Mine, the S600, the Mercillac) and I'm pretty sure the S outweighs the SL..

#88-Hong Kong Cavaliers Benz S500: formerly known as OMG Racing #140...
Judges Choice and Regional Award winner! Chuckwalla '12, Buttonwillow '13, BFE GP '15, Miller '14 & '15, Sonoma '13,'14,'15,'17. Inde '16,17. Other foolishness: Finisher of the inaugural Lemons Rally, in the black Jag.... and IOE in the Super Snipe back in '12.

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

There is a good reason why a 4500 lb hunk isn't allowed,  See the video where the brakes failed on the ford truck,  fortunately it mostly just smashed into a barrier and not into a little miata.   Well if you want to be really stupid you can swap that v12 into a miata..or a mustang,
or even better how about a Camero.  lol (sic).   Given one has already run, there isn't the novelty of it, unless it was in a Tercel,
which btw, I have a free 1990 Tercel available!

Hussler wrote:

Interesting responses I never thought about the weight. Would stripping it to reduce the weight let it qualify or does it go by the titled weight? It doesn't sound like you guys think the car would be very competitive, I'm not looking to win anything but getting passed by Saturns and neons would probably make me feel pretty stupid for cutting up such a nice car...

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

Weight goes by manufacturer stated weight. Yes it will get lighter when you strip it out, but it will still be a heavy car. I'm sure a waiver would likely be granted since the car would get lighter.

yes, your first few races you are going to get your doors blown off by cheap small power cars. Maybe on the straights you'll pull, but come the next corner and the good drivers will go right back around. This is just how it goes when you start. Wheel to wheel racing with 100 other cars is overwhelming, and unless you're a pro race driver you just won't be the fastest guy out there. Good drivers win races/classes, not cars.


If you move forward with the benz, invest in GOOD brakes. new rotors with no cross drilling or slots (they'll crack), very good racing fluid, and real race pads (I'm an ST43 fanboy. Our set has gone 4 races in our heavy saab and still have tons of life left). After that turn your attention to the cooling system. make sure it's perfect. Big heavy car with a high HP V12 is going to get warm. Get an aftermarket water temp gauge because the dash gauge usually doesn't show anything until you're in trouble. Over heating is what kills cars.

19 Time Loser FutilityMotorsport
Turbo Dodge Powered E36 Build
2008 Saab 9-5Aero Wagon
Retired - 1989 Dodge Daytona Shelby 2011-2015 "Lifetime Award for Lack of Achievement" IOE, 3X I got screwed, Organizer's Choice

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

Porterfield R4E, Motul RBF 600.

FYI  Temp gauge is a real gauge in these MBs. They have real oil pressure gauges, too. Quite accurate. Speaking of oil, Mobil 1 15w50, accept no substitutes. Having 2 bar oil pressure and 85C coolant temps at full hot idle, rocks.

#88-Hong Kong Cavaliers Benz S500: formerly known as OMG Racing #140...
Judges Choice and Regional Award winner! Chuckwalla '12, Buttonwillow '13, BFE GP '15, Miller '14 & '15, Sonoma '13,'14,'15,'17. Inde '16,17. Other foolishness: Finisher of the inaugural Lemons Rally, in the black Jag.... and IOE in the Super Snipe back in '12.

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

DO IT!!!

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

Only brakes that didn't melt on the XJ12 were ST43 on the front and R4E's on the rear (R4E's were off the shelf and cheaper, ST43's had to be custom made) so +1 on brakes.  Buying the wrong pads can turn into a nightmare so if R4E's work on Type44's car, buy those.  Yes, the 3 series, miatas, etc will be faster but you aren't really going to be racing those guys.  If it gets put in C (like I think it might), it will be faster than the others in class.  Again, brakes and cooling are your focus.  If you have questions about eligibility or classing, email judgephil@24hoursoflemons.com.  If you have tech questions, email head of tech John john@evilgeniusracing.com.   If you have questions about how to turn that thing into a race car, (kill switch, etc) I'd seek out Rob (Type44)

1990 RX7 "Mazdarita" 
1994 Jaguar XJ12 (Winner C-Class 2013 Sears Pointless)
1964 Sunbeam Imp (IOE 2013 Sears Pointless)
1980 Rover SD1 (I Got Screwed 2014 Return of Lemonites) (Sold -> Houston.  Gone and forgotten)

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

Hussler wrote:

Interesting responses I never thought about the weight. Would stripping it to reduce the weight let it qualify or does it go by the titled weight? It doesn't sound like you guys think the car would be very competitive, I'm not looking to win anything but getting passed by Saturns and neons would probably make me feel pretty stupid for cutting up such a nice car...

So you know it takes roughly $4,000-5,000 to prep a car for its first race, right? If you've got $2,300 in it and could sell it for $8,000, you've got enough profit to build another car for "free."

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

ross2004 wrote:
Hussler wrote:

Interesting responses I never thought about the weight. Would stripping it to reduce the weight let it qualify or does it go by the titled weight? It doesn't sound like you guys think the car would be very competitive, I'm not looking to win anything but getting passed by Saturns and neons would probably make me feel pretty stupid for cutting up such a nice car...

So you know it takes roughly $4,000-5,000 to prep a car for its first race, right? If you've got $2,300 in it and could sell it for $8,000, you've got enough profit to build another car for "free."

Or skip the building part and buy one someone else is done with and still have a few bucks left over.

1992 Saturn SL2 (retired) - Elmo's Revenge -  Class B winner, Heroic Fix winner x2
1969 Rover P6B 3500S - Super G-Rover - I.O.E Winner, Class C Winner
1996 Saturn SW2 - Elmo's Revenge

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

If you want to race an SL600 because you want a fast, reliable track car that can easily win races, then follow the advice of the people who say to sell it and buy something else. This is the more sensible and less fun option, to me.

If instead you want to race an SL600 because throwing a high-horsepower German tank around a road course will be hilariously fun, and you don't expect to even win Class C until your team learns a few things the hard way, then please for the love of god go for it. Follow cheseroo's and Type44's advice, and spend all your effort on reliability and stopping power until you've got a couple trouble-free races under your belt.

Command Pilot/Flight Director, Escape Velocity Racing
Index of Effluency, Heroic Fix, Class C Trophy, now hopelessly gunning for Class B.
Currently 1-2 vs. Team Fairlylame in the Class of 1964 Championships

Re: Does my SL600 qualify?

This sounds like wonderfulness, but I'd email ahead to get the weight waiver before hacking into the car.

Also a billionth'd—sort the brakes before anything else.