Fangio & the 6.9

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Oversize

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A rather glowing road test of an Aussie 6.9 in the UK...

http://www.pistonheads.com/gassing/...&nmt=RE:+PH+Heroes:+Mercedes+450SEL+6.9&mid=0

It does raise some interesting questions:

As the SLS ages does the body roll become more pronounced? Or does the 6.9 appear to have more roll now, because we're comparing it to newer cars? Significant body roll wasn't reported in the road tests conducted when the car was first released; but maybe that's because they where comparing it to other cars of the era with huge amounts of roll....

I've heard of James Hunt 'blowing up' several 6.9s somewhere else. How exactly does one blow one up (not that I intend to try)? Could it be he modified, or replaced the rotor buttons and over-revved the engines???
 

motec 6.9

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Hi Mark interestingly the Ex Kennet car reported here before was the press car driven by Fangio in Australia . Geoff:D
 

Styria

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Interesting review of Fangio's drive but, more importantly, some salient remarks and details about 6.9s. I also managed to dig up the Ronin video of a 6.9 involved in a car chase.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HPI5-TSdC9w

I had never seen that video before, so it was most enjoyable and a real eye opener. Also, Mark raises some interesting questions in his post regarding handling of our 6.9s. From what I have heard in days gone by, one mechanic has always maintained that 6.9s did not handle well even when quite new. The handling seemed to be a bit boatlike (his words), and I also know of one owner that bought both a 450 and 6.9 when new, and he's always maintained that the 450 was his preferred driver.

It is also possible for me to cast my mind back probably about fourteen years when a friend of mine (with a 450SEL) and myself with Gleaming Beauty were on a joint drive, with both of us 'trying' on a challenging, open road. (The Bells Line of Road for Sydneysiders). There was no doubt that he gave me a hard time handling wise, and I could only shake him (to some extent) under acceleration uphills. I tend to think that slow corners or roundabouts cause them to somewhat heel over, but overall the handling is quite good - a little better than my 420SEL - at speed on the open road. Regards Styria
 

SEL_69L

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The funnest way I have found for accelerating my 6.9 is to get it rolling to about 10km/ hr, THEN floor it. Speed builds very rapidly after that!

Just for fun I sometimes do this, accelerating from 10 km/ hr to 60 km /hr. That way, you stay the right side of the law, and there is less of a possibility of accidently bending metal.

One of the main problems with the 6.9 is that with that big cast iron engine over the front tyres, you are really asking a lot of them, and tends to make the car nose heavy, relative to other W116's.
 
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Oversize

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The funnest way I have found for accelerating my 6.9 is to get it rolling to about 10km/ hr, THEN floor it. Speed builds very rapidly after that!

Just for fun I sometimes do this, accelerating from 10 km/ hr to 60 km /hr. That way, you stay the right side of the law, and there is less of a possibility of accidently bending metal.

One of the main problems with the 6.9 is that with that big cast iron engine over the front tyres, you are really asking a lot of them, and tends to make the car nose heavy, relative to other W116's.

I'm hoping a decent set of 18" wheels and tyres will solve some of the understeer issues.... Or just hit the gas and balance it with oversteer!!! But perhaps that will just end in a 4x4 slide! LOL!
 

Michel

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Dont' know what you guys are on about?
over steer... under steer... :rolleyes:

MMatOranPark.jpg
 

motec 6.9

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Hi Michel it looks like you Zigged when you should have Zagged. LOL Geoff :D:D:D
 
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Braking mid-corner???!!! An intentional drift perhaps?? LOL! ;)
 

Michel

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Braking mid-corner???!!! An intentional drift perhaps?? LOL! ;)

There certainly was no braking mid corner!
All the braking was was done Before..:p

These are headlights/taillights you see :cool:
 

SEL_69L

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If you are going to replace the 14" Bundts with bigger wheels, two important factors must be remembered:

1. Ideally, 7" wide wheels should be used, but it is essential that the correct offset for the wheel width be used, so that the axis of the kingpin passes through the centre of the contact patch on the road. (Zero offset steering), otherwise the front end grip at the limit will be affected.

2. With 7" wide wheels, the standard 215 mm wide tyre is what Mercedes originally reccomended. If wider tyres are used, it is ESSENTIAL that every time you park the vehicle, that the front wheels are in the straight ahead position.
If you don't, and the suspension goes down, the arches of the wheel wells will collapse onto the top of the tyres, and bent metal could be the result.

Currently, I am thinking of putting 16" wheels from a W126 on my car.
The standard tyre specification for the 6.9 is
215 x 70 x 14.
I am thinking of tyres with spec.
225 x 60 x 16. I am not all that keen on wider tyres than that, because of the problems associated with a settling suspension, mentioned above.

Properly designed lower profile tyres can result in less tyre case distortion under hard cornering. Speak to your local KNOWLEDGEABLE tyre dealer about what's best. Some low profile tyres are just window dressing at best.
 
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Oversize

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Bundts are on par with Porsche wheels being super-light. So it's a huge shame the tyres available are quite limited. Modern alloys are heavy in comparison (even the MB stuff).

I agree that offset is critical to any different wheels you're thinking of fitting. With the right offset and diameter, the max tyre width on the front of a W116 is probably 235s and on the rear 265s. One day I'll get around to testing my theory! :)
 
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