E36 AMGS go­ing cheap... for now

Mar­ket catch­ing on to the almighty bangs-for-bucks Mercedes-benz W120 ‘six’

Classic Cars (UK) - - Chasing Cars -

De­cent W210 E36 AMGS can still be bought for five grand and I reckon they’re the last of the bar­gain Nineties AMG Mercs. A West York­shire pri­vate seller has a ’96 in Bril­liant Sil­ver with black leather and 70k for £3995 while the trade in Cheshire has a ’97 in the same colour combo with 92k for £5499. Both cars have plenty of bills, low own­er­ship, fsh and are a mighty bang for your buck.

While W124 E36s are climb­ing over £10k now and V8 E55s ris­ing too, the sim­i­larly com­pe­tent W210 looks in­sanely cheap. MB built only 400 be­tween 1996 and 1997 – all rhd – with most go­ing to Aus­tralia. Only 150 were sold in the UK and the DVLA cur­rently records just 11 road­go­ing sur­vivors. Com­pared with the 2870 E55s built, the E36 is one of the rarest AMGS of them all and one the last mod­els to be han­dassem­bled at AMG’S plant in Af­fal­ter­bach. The dohc M106 six-cylin­der is gruff, ur­gent and bul­let­proof, push­ing out a very re­spectable 288bhp and the looks are ex­actly the same as the E55, apart from the boot badge. Even the 18-inch AMG five-spoke al­loys and twin ex­hausts are iden­ti­cal.

New list was £53k and sales were glacial be­cause ev­ery­body knew the V8 E55 was wait­ing in the wings. Buy­ers were usu­ally mid­dle-aged en­thu­si­asts and the wear pat­terns and mileages cov­ered by E36s are dif­fer­ent from the E55, which was more of a hard­core hooli­gan’s drag­ster. Not hav­ing a V8 up front means they’re sim­pler, less strained and use lots of E320 parts, so run­ning costs won’t be ru­inous. You’ll find ebay is stuffed with used bits. Watch for the usual W210 rust round the front wings, rear arches and screens and if the cat­alytic con­vert­ers are rat­tling walk away. A 0-60mph time of 6.7 sec­onds isn’t light­ning fast but the E36 has lighter steer­ing and more front-end poise than the slightly nose-heavy 55, while the top end is lim­ited to the usual 155mph. But speed is what you’ll need to bag one at these low prices. A London trader has just sold a 60,000-miler for £15k. Be quick.

‘Speed is what you’ll need to bag one at these low prices’

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