My Experience with Peter Lennox Motors

 I flew to Melbourne and bought a 1993 E320 Cabriolet on the 6th November 2019, on the first day driving back to Bathurst (NSW)  just past Seymour (VIC) something went off under the car, I thought it might have been a blocked catalytic converter, but in hindsight could have been the transmission. These cars in the Mercedes world are rare collectors items and I have since learnt a lot about the transmission, the Australian models were 5 speed with the American models being 4 speed. The transmission is very hard to find and a rebuild is the main option, I was quoted $6-7,500 to rebuild mine by highly respected John Tsolakis of MB Classic Star in Sydney.

Here is their original ad for my car.

 

E320 1993 Convertible, very rare car less than 100 ever delivered to Australia, one of the nicest cruisers ever made this is a great opportunity to own 1, finished in blue black metallic paint with grey leather interior and black electric roof, memory seat, upgraded stereo, electric mirrors, rebuilt transmission, new front brakes, full major service, stamped service books & 2 keys, here's your chance to have some fun so don't miss out ........

 

Avoid disappointment & contact our sales team to book a test drive today..............

 

**We have inspected and tested this Mercedes-Benz in our own fully-accredited service centre (with over 30 years of specialist Mercedes-Benz experience ).

It is approved for our warranty program Australia-wide, which includes roadside assistance-for periods of either 3 or 5 years.**

 

My transmission had been slipping and would just drop power for a while, I thought that it was probably just needing an adjustment, but on the 6th March 2020 it completely died, my feelings are a rebuilt transmission should last longer than a couple of months, I purchased the car on the 6th November 2019 but the car had been off the road for 3 weeks waiting for a hydraulic cylinder to fix the roof.

 

Below is my first e-mail to Peter Lennox having had no luck over the phone.

 

14-3-2020  To Cameron McMinn & Peter Lennox

 

Hi, I am Paul Finnerty, I bought a 1993 E320 Cabriolet from you on the 6-11-2019.

You might remember that I flew down from Bathurst.

I have had the car for approximately four months, one month of which the car has been off the road and currently still is. The car has travelled 2430 Kilometres since Iíve had it, including the drive from Melbourne.

 

When I purchased the car Peter listed the work that had been carried out on the car, such as replacing the rear bumper, matching the tyres and doing work on the transmission, of which I queried him about, he told me it was a five speed and that they had worked on it and now had it just right. He even mentioned changing the antenna rubber, shame he forgot to mention that the antenna doesn't work.

 

My trouble first started on the drive back to Bathurst with a blocked catalytic converter, it went off like a bomb under the car, I contacted Cameron the following morning from a motel and talked about it, I also mentioned that there was no tool kit in the car and if I got a flat tyre in the bush I would be in trouble.

Cameron said he would post one out and I would have it within a week, Iím still waiting. That catalytic converter cost me $1200.00 to replace.

 

I e-mailed and asked for a list of work carried out by Lennox motors on the car, just like the one Peter read off to me, instead I was sent a sheet of paper which was half blanked out ( I assume something naughty) with the remainder just being part numbers, I threw this sheet away as it was completely useless. I took this as an insult.

 

I took our grand kids for a drive with the roof down, (which I had not done since purchasing the car) when I went to close the roof I copped about 2 litres of hydraulic fluid dropping in from inside the roof. It turned out to be the bow lock cylinder which blew out, took 3 weeks to get the part repaired, with the car being off the road.

I can live with this sort of thing as things happen, like the rear seat belt locks being broken ( I am waiting for new ones to come from the U.S. Cost $200.00 U.S.)

 

My main complaint is the transmission, which completely failed Friday the 6th March 2020. The car is un-drivable and is currently garaged.

Kelso automatics had a look at it for me and determined that the filter was blocked, it was blocked with pieces of molten seals and rubber from the workings, (picture attached) they also told me that in their opinion the transmission has never been overhauled.

They do not do European cars, but I have arranged to have the transmission removed and replace if need be, currently John Tsolakis of MB Classic Star has quoted me $7,000.00 to overhaul the transmission, that is on top of the removal and installation and transport  costs. I am still waiting on other quotes.

 

I feel that Peter Lennox should take some responsibility, as his workshop should have had the car in peak condition for sale, also the fact he mentioned the transmission repair work in the first place.

 

 It would be nice if Peter accepted some responsibility and helped me meet the cost.

If need be I can arrange to have the car shipped to Melbourne, thatís if Peter would like his workshop to overhaul the transmission.

 

I have my own youtube channel and web site which shows the work I have carried out on my Mercedes cars over the years, I am also a member of the Mercedes club NSW and the Bathurst Historic Motor Club.  I am on face book with the 124 club and Mercedes buy & sell pages.

 

I would hate to have to write articles that bad mouth Peter Lennox motors.

 

After having no reply from them I decided to put a warning to prospective people dealing with Peter Lennox every time they advertised on Mercedes Buy & Sell.

 

 Here is a link to youtube in regard to replacing hydraulic roof ram and mentioning transmission trouble  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FZN7rSj61VU

 

This is my second e-mail to Peter Lennox 17-3 2020

Hi, Again from Paul Finnerty
 
I really would like to get an answer about the transmission on my car and get it back on the road.
 
It's sad seeing it just sit in the garage.
 
This is your original ad where you state that the car has a rebuilt transmission and if you don't believe me the original ad is on the link below.
By the way it only had 1 key.
 
I have tried ASV, SWEA and Australian auto parts looking for a 2nd hand transmission with no luck, waiting on Euro Logic.
 
But I feel you should at least chip in, I have never had a transmission go on me even with the older cars like the 1977 450SLC I sold to purchase your car.
 
Please respond, cheers, Paul.

In the meantime I bought a second hand transmission from JMG Autos at Yennora in Sydney (wreckers), well at least I thought I did, they wasted over a month of my time promising that they were delivering the transmission, then in the end I had to fight to get my money back, finally the Department Of Fair trading  got through to them and I got a refund on the 23-4-2020.

Do Not Have Anything To Do With JMG Autos.

On the 24-3-2020 Cameron at Peter Lennox motors rang me in regards to the transmission, my campaign with their advertising was working,  he said once the corona virus thing is over I could send them the car (at my expense) and they will look at the transmission and discuss what might be needed, like they would pay for labour and I could pay for parts. ( I have learnt that it works out at $1000 per gear in parts )

His e-mail after phone conversation.

Good afternoon Paul, 25-3-2020

Thanks very much for the reply, as per our phone conversation you keep me informed as to whether you would like us to inspect the transmission with a view to discussing further what would be involved in fixing the transmission, As we discussed this morning that right now is nearly impossible to achieve but we are to discuss later when times get better for all of us,

Look forward to chatting with you soon.

Later I thought about it and decided that it could take 2 years before the virus thing goes away and that I should pay nothing for the transmission overhaul, of course I don't mind paying for shipping.

I carried on my campaign

My next e-mail

25-3-2020 Hi, Cameron
 
It was nice that you made contact, I have been thinking about our conversation, I don't mind sending the car to you and having the transmission re-overhauled.
But I think the transmission should totally be at your expense, you sold me a car stating that it had a rebuilt transmission, I have been driving for 51 years and never had a transmission failure.
 I think that transmission should have lasted at least a few years if it was rebuilt and suspect that the job was poorly done in the first place.
 
The labour component is probably the cheapest side of the rebuild.
 
In any case I will see how I go with the second hand transmission, if that fails I might send you just the transmission out of the car for a rebuild, that's if we can come to a suitable compromise.
 
Regards, Paul.

A gentleman in Adelaide came to my rescue with a second hand transmission, this was shipped and installed in less than a week, (27-4-2020) it is older than the one that was in the car but works, how long for we do not know.

 

On the 12th May I published a video on youtube where I was derogative to Peter Lennox, this resulted in the threat of litigation, I removed the offending comment. 

Can be viewed here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WZWHEYhBReg

My next conversation with Cameron was on the 13-5-2020, I suggested that I send them the transmission and they repair it, he was amiable to the idea but still he would not commit to paying for the overhaul and suggested that it might not be faulty. I want them to put in writing that they will pay for the overhaul, so I sent the following e-mail.

Hi, Cameron as per our phone discussion this morning, 13-5-20 could you please confirm in writing that you will overhaul the transmission, if faulty, at your expense, I will gladly pay all transport fee's, but I do not want to be surprised with any extra payments.   Form 4 used motor car price & data sheet shows your advertisement which clearly states a rebuilt transmission.                            Regards, Paul.

Now guess what, I have received no reply and don't expect one, all along they have only contacted me when I have made my voice heard in letting people know how shifty they are, I have had no apology or even a remote offer of assistance other than saying they will look at the transmission and we can come to a compromise, (meaning they can slug me to repair it). I have given up as they will not openly admit any responsibility and will not pay for any repair, be very careful dealing with Peter Lennox motors.

This Exercise has gone on for over six months and caused a lot of anxiety and worry to me, thank you Peter Lennox.