Distilled Lemons: A 2002 Mercedes in Class C?

So how exactly does a late-model Mercedes-Benz end up in Class C (the slowest and crappiest class) in the 24 Hours of Lemons? Mercedes have been fairly reliable and quick in Lemons; this seems like some glaring oversight, especially considering the car is a 2002 Mercedes C230 that should have a supercharged engine!


It turns out some members of the Sussbag Crew worked in a junkyard and figured that a C230 with a blown engine was as good a Lemons candidate as any. Naturally, they dug around the junkyard’s stock for something of similar displacement. As the team is based in the Midwest, that was naturally the 2.3-liter Ford Pinto engine.


Did it dominate on its debut at Road America in 2013? It did not, although it was neither the slowest car nor the last-place one in spite of the elevated ride height created by liberating the car of its overweight luxuries. Unfortunately, the Pinto engine expired before the end of the race.


A replacement Lima engine also blew up in its second race and while we haven’t seen it since, this Mercedes is pretty much the perfect equation for Class C in Lemons:

Doomed For Scrap + Abundant-But-Crappy Engine Laying Around = Real Effluency

Roadkill Fall 2016 Cover