Can my car make it from LA to Chicago? - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

SLK R170 General Discussion SLK 200, SLK 230K, SLK 320, SLK32 AMG

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#1 Old 01-13-2018
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Arrow Can my car make it from LA to Chicago?

I'm about to drive from LA to Chicago. One mechanic told me I'm crazy, and that it's like a person who runs half a mile a day all of sudden running ten miles! Doesn't make any sense to me. He says the transmission will be shot by the end of it. What do you guys think? Any items I should double check before heading out? Thanks in advance.

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#2 Old 01-13-2018
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when was transmission service done last?
oil change? etc?
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#3 Old 01-13-2018
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Statistically speaking, excluding starting and stopping the car – a single 1500 mile trip versus 1500 miles one at a time are exactly the same. As a matter fact, a single 1500 mile trip is far better than many single mile trips.
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#4 Old 01-13-2018
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Condition is everything, have you been driving it a lot lately ? Tires bald ? Oil changed ? Battery good ? Any dash lights ? In other words, "insufficient data".

I'd take mine to LaLaLand tomorrow and it is a bit further from here. or the Crossie, or the Reattae (not the Judge, gas is too expensive). If properly maintained (and that is the key) 100K miles is just broken in. If not is just broken.

That said I also have AAA Premier Plus and carry appropriate tools and spares.
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#5 Old 01-13-2018
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IF you do your preparation, fluid checks (tranny, anti-freeze and brake included), why not?

Get it thoroughly checked over first.

Don't forget, we have members in all 50 states.
If anything happens they can make recommendations.

Not forgetting the most important source of info, this forum.

MB and Indys all over.

Do a daily check before driving (tyres tread, pressure, fluids and such).

Carry a few spares and a handy toolkit, some wire, gaffa tape.

Should be fine.
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#6 Old 01-13-2018
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Originally Posted by Jbyram View Post
I'm about to drive from LA to Chicago. One mechanic told me I'm crazy, and that it's like a person who runs half a mile a day all of sudden running ten miles! Doesn't make any sense to me. He says the transmission will be shot by the end of it. What do you guys think? Any items I should double check before heading out? Thanks in advance.

-Jbyram
r170 slk320 2002, 106k miles
Get it ready for the road trip and be safe. Good luck.
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#7 Old 01-13-2018
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Get a new mechanic..... If anything, your transmission will work BETTER when the trip is over.
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#8 Old 01-13-2018
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Planning on swapping for one of the SLK32AMGs that just popped up in Chi ?


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#9 Old 01-13-2018
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Cool

You will be perfectly all right as you are not going through Oregon.
Has your car got more miles on it now than the amount you are going to travel?
How many engines and gearboxes has it had?
Get the oil changed etc and off you go, you will wear your tyres slightly on the journey....i bet the mechanic didn't mention that.....
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#10 Old 01-13-2018
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Unless there's something serious wrong with the car, I don't know why your mechanic would say that. Seems like you need a new mechanic.
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#11 Old 01-14-2018
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+1 on the new mechanic idea

if he's a sporting gent, why not offer him a gentlemanly wager. If the car makes it no problem, he's $20 up. If it doesn't, he puts it right, or pays you the cost of fixing it. That'll test his faith in his own abilities. Otherwise, why have you been paying him to keep it on the line all these years?
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#12 Old 01-14-2018
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I would change your mechanic and get the car checked over by somebody who knows what they are talking about before you go.


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#13 Old 01-14-2018
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Why would he say that? Ask him if he knows of a specific problem in your car, and why is he only telling you now?

Other than that, like said, normal checks and services done should be no problem.

We take ours down to southern France every summer, and that is about the same one way. Never had a problem. touch wood :-)

Put your roof down, enjoy and have a safe trip!

edit: PS. let us know how it went. With pics!
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#14 Old 01-14-2018
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If no major mechanical faults are on the car now it should be fine.
I did a Mobile Alabama to Chicago and back in a Mazda mx-6 a few years ago and no problems.
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#15 Old 01-14-2018
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I bought a little diesel Peugeot panel van for Ł400 ( $500 ). It had a 'gearbox problem', ( noisy as hell and difficult to change the manual box ) and the brakes were 'iffy'. Reckoned on a used gearbox for 3150, diy and I had a little runabout van for the dogs and rubbish tip runs.

Spoke to local gearbox place who said Peugeot gearboxes leaked oil and to check level. Took out the plug and about 1/4 cup full of thick black muck drained out. Refilled it. Discovered that the brake fluid was below the intake to the master cylinder and the steering fluid was in a similar state! Topped it all off, drove it around locally for about 2 weeks, never longer than 10 miles at a time and all was good, screeching from gearbox gone, brakes good and steering not 'lumpy'. Decided to drive it to Greece! 1100 miles across Europe, Ferry, another couple of hundred over a sailing season around Greece then drove it back. Used it over the winter as a runabout and then took it to Greece again. Never saw a 'mechanic', it never needed fluids again and never missed a beat in 3 1100 mile trips.

Sold it to a guy in Greece who wanted to move a bunch of boat stuff from there back home to the UK. ( for Ł1500 ). Still know the guy and 5 years later the van is still banging away between the UK and Greece every season!

Ok so it wasn't a Merc but the principles are the same! If you trust the car to go 100 miles chances are it'll go 1500 miles for all the reasons allready listed by the other posters. Once your car is on the motorway/interstate the gearbox is not being exercised apart from the occasional up or downshift, once you are up-to-temperature nothing is changing. No reason to stop between filling the tank and stopping to refill!
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#16 Old 01-14-2018
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1. Get a new mechanic
2. Get a weather app on your phone.

Unless your car hasn't been maintained, the biggest problem you could run into is snow.
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#17 Old 01-18-2018
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It was done about a year ago.
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#18 Old 01-18-2018
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Cool. Thanks, all. I checked the pulleys really quick today, they all spin just fine. Although there is a small amount of wobble in the water pump. That's been there for years. Getting an oil change today and heading out on Monday! Can't wait. Thanks for all the feedback.
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#19 Old 01-18-2018
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Yes, certainly get a new mechanic and have a pleasant trip
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#20 Old 01-18-2018
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Road trip photos would be nice if you have time along the way
Have a safe journey.
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