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1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
9/25/19 4:43 p.m.

I made the bank transfer this afternoon, so the car is paid in full and the seller should receive the funds in the next day or two.  One big step forward.

While I am waiting to receive the paperwork, I have been checking on some parts that I already know I will need.  The seller has his front license plate fixed to the front bumper with some kind of black substance.  There is no mounting plate (or whatever it is called).  I have found a couple of these used, but I've found two different part numbers (A2518850081 and A2518850881) and I'm not sure which is that part I need.  If somebody knows, please tell me.  Because the rear diffuser has been cut up to accommodate the aftermarket trailer hitch, I would like to get another diffuser, with the two parts needed to cover the hole for the hitch.  I will also need to move the electrical outlet for the hitch as it currently sticks out beyond the diffuser.  I found an R63 diffuser for sale, but the seller tells me it is not pre-marked on the backside for the hitch cut-out.

Today I went by the local Mercedes dealer and he can order me a new mounting plate for the front license plate, as well as the rear diffuser.  Because my R63 did not come from the factory with a trailer hitch, the diffuser that comes up with my VIN is the same one I found elsewhere and is not scored for the hitch opening and he told me that the hitch cover parts would not fit that diffuser.  He did find another diffuser for an R63 that comes prepared for a trailer hitch, but his computer says it is a US Version, so he is not sure if it will work or not.  And if I order it, it's mine, whether it fits or not.  And Mercedes won't give me the part numbers (guess they don't want me to buy it somewhere else).  But he did tell me that if someone gives me the part number of a diffuser that worked on their R63, he would tell me if it is the same one that he came up with.

Are there any European R63 owners (or even U.S. owners) out there who have factory or aftermarket, and who have the rear diffuser with the hole and cover for the hitch?  It would be great to have some detailed photos of the diffuser showing both the hole and the cover and how the hitch and electrical outlet line up with the hole in the diffuser.  It would also be helpful to have part numbers.  The aftermarket hitch on my R63 is made by Westphalia.  The main difference with U.S. hitches is that the European receiver points straight down rather than straight out, so the ball mount has to be pushed up from underneath.

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
9/25/19 7:37 p.m.

I would suggest e-mailing FCPEuro to assist in the part number search for the diffuser.  They have been great to work with on the odd Valve Body issue I've been having.

Congrats again!! 

 

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
9/26/19 4:24 a.m.
NoahWeb said:

I would suggest e-mailing FCPEuro to assist in the part number search for the diffuser.  They have been great to work with on the odd Valve Body issue I've been having.

Congrats again!! 

 

It's done.  Thanks for the suggestion.  We'll see if they can provide any information.

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
9/26/19 11:10 a.m.

I heard back from FCPEuro.  Great response time.  Unfortunately their database only shows parts for US cars, so they couldn't help.

mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
9/26/19 11:13 a.m.

I wonder if Noah has any of the part numbers from the repair of his car. I know they should be US numbers, but if the rear bumper cover is the same then it seems like the undertray should be as well. Or at least it should work. Or, since there are two of them floating around, pictures to compare and see if they appear to be the same? 

Hoondavan
Hoondavan Reader
9/26/19 12:45 p.m.

I use RealOEM to find part numbers.  I didn't see any part #'s for a trailer hitch for your car.  Here's the link to your AMG:

https://nemigaparts.com/cat_spares/epc/mercedes/1/fg/251177/63u/

I have a friend who's a mercedes tech.  I'm pretty sure he said he needed a new wiring harness to add a trailer hitch to his diesel G-class.  He also needed to reprogram the ECU so it would recognize the new harness (w/light adaptors).  I may not remember the conversation 100%...but I definitely got the impression adding a hitch to a modern Mercedes is a whole lot more involved than one would expect. 

 

 

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
9/26/19 1:47 p.m.
mazdeuce - Seth said:

I wonder if Noah has any of the part numbers from the repair of his car. I know they should be US numbers, but if the rear bumper cover is the same then it seems like the undertray should be as well. Or at least it should work. Or, since there are two of them floating around, pictures to compare and see if they appear to be the same? 

Photos always welcome.

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
9/26/19 1:51 p.m.
Hoondavan said:

I use RealOEM to find part numbers.  I didn't see any part #'s for a trailer hitch for your car.  Here's the link to your AMG:

https://nemigaparts.com/cat_spares/epc/mercedes/1/fg/251177/63u/

I have a friend who's a mercedes tech.  I'm pretty sure he said he needed a new wiring harness to add a trailer hitch to his diesel G-class.  He also needed to reprogram the ECU so it would recognize the new harness (w/light adaptors).  I may not remember the conversation 100%...but I definitely got the impression adding a hitch to a modern Mercedes is a whole lot more involved than one would expect. 

 

 

Thanks for the link.  I went to the site and entered my VIN and it was not recognized (I suppose because I have a European model), so I can't tell what parts they have that would work on my car.  I also got the impression from Mercedes France that it is not an easy thing to add a trailer hitch to an R Class that didn't come with one from the factory, but there are people selling hitches for the R Class and the R63 that I bought has an aftermarket hitch.  I don't have it in France yet, so I haven't actually hooked it up to my trailer, and therefore I don't "know" that it will work, but the previous owner seems to have used it.

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
9/26/19 8:12 p.m.
1955W196S said:
mazdeuce - Seth said:

I wonder if Noah has any of the part numbers from the repair of his car. I know they should be US numbers, but if the rear bumper cover is the same then it seems like the undertray should be as well. Or at least it should work. Or, since there are two of them floating around, pictures to compare and see if they appear to be the same? 

Photos always welcome.

 

Checked the Body Shop paperwork; no part numbers.  Just lists "Bumper cover w/o hitch, w/o sport w/parktronic"

Will try to get some photos this weekend and post here.  More to follow. 

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
9/27/19 2:26 a.m.
NoahWeb said:
1955W196S said:
mazdeuce - Seth said:

I wonder if Noah has any of the part numbers from the repair of his car. I know they should be US numbers, but if the rear bumper cover is the same then it seems like the undertray should be as well. Or at least it should work. Or, since there are two of them floating around, pictures to compare and see if they appear to be the same? 

Photos always welcome.

 

Checked the Body Shop paperwork; no part numbers.  Just lists "Bumper cover w/o hitch, w/o sport w/parktronic"

Will try to get some photos this weekend and post here.  More to follow. 

Thanks, NoahWeb.  Looking forward to the photos.

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
9/28/19 9:34 a.m.


 

Undercarriage of the R63. Forgive the dirt; hasn't been washed yet. 

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
9/30/19 1:46 p.m.

Thanks for the photos NoahWeb.  I'll take a closer look at mine when I finally get it home.

We took another step forward.  The seller informed me this afternoon that he has received payment.  He should be getting the registration/title and a few more documents in the mail to me.  There is not much I can do until the documents arrive.  When they arrive, some of them will have to be translated into French before I can apply to register the car in France.

I did order the front license plate mount today and the dealer should have it on Wednesday.

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
10/5/19 6:44 a.m.

The license plate mount arrived at the dealer on Wednesday, but I won't pick it up till next Tuesday (I live almost an hour from the dealer and will be in town on Tuesday for other stuff).

Today I received the title and other documents from the seller.  Now I have to get them translated into French.  I will check on Monday to see if I can get the temporary registration without the translations, but I'm not holding my breath on that.  Also, I'm still waiting for my Certificate of Conformity to arrive.  This is a document from Mercedes that states that my car complies with all the European standards.  This is given to the original owner, but usually gets lost (which it did), so I had to order another one for 140 euros (about $160).  It should already have arrived.  If it doesn't come in the mail on Monday, I'll contact the company.

Another step forward, but I can't set a date to go pick up the car until I get the temporary registration.

On a side note, while doing research on the possibility of visiting AMG in Affalterbach, I discovered that they have a special website/forum for AMG owners called the Private Lounge.  Anyone who owns an AMG should check it out, if you haven't done so already.  Here is the link: AMG Private Lounge.  To get access, you have to provide the VIN for your AMG.

mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
10/5/19 7:03 a.m.

Getting this is quite the process. I don't I'll ever complain about fly and drives in the US again. 

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
10/5/19 3:30 p.m.

If I had a little more money, I would have bought the first one I saw which was located in France and would have been much simpler (the dealer would have taken care of the registration).  But I've got more time than money, and I don't have much time.  So I'm not complaining, and I'm rather looking forward to the drive down through Germany.

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
10/7/19 4:38 p.m.

One more little step forward.  I needed to get a government form that states that there is no sales tax owed on the car I bought.  According to what I found on the internet, I had to go to my local tax office to get this.  I went there this morning and waited in line about half an hour (not bad at all), only to discover that I couldn't get the document from them.  I needed to go to a bigger town about 30 minutes from where I live.  It was too late to get there before they closed for lunch, but I decided to call just to make sure that I would be able to get the document from them.  It was a good thing that I called because I discovered that you have to make an appointment if you want to see anyone and they had an opening that afternoon.  I arrived on time and within 5 minutes my name was called.  10 minutes later, I was on my way out the door with the document in my folder and a promise from the tax man that when he got home he was going to google "R63 AMG".  He couldn't believe that there is a mini-van with over 500 HP!

On a less cheery note, I've gotten two estimates on translating the Swedish title (2 sheets, double sided) into French.  The cheaper of the two estimates came to about $400!  I've contacted a couple of other official translators and I hope that I will get a cheaper estimate tomorrow.  If not, I'll just have to bite the bullet.

The only documents that I still need are the translations of the Swedish title and the European Certificate of Conformity.

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
10/9/19 12:28 p.m.

One step forward, two steps back

I have a translator who will do the translation for less than $200!  I should receive scanned versions of the translations on Monday, with the originals arriving in the mail a couple of days later.  Hooray!

On the other hand, it's been two weeks since I ordered the Certificate of Conformity European that was supposed to arrive in one week.  I did a google search on the company and it appears that they are a scam.  Ouch!  So I went by the Mercedes dealership this afternoon.  They can't do the certificate themselves, but they said that they will have someone call Mercedes France tomorrow morning and I'm to go back to the dealership tomorrow afternoon.  My biggest concern is that going through Mercedes, they say that it takes three weeks to get the certificate.  If I can't get this expedited, then I will have to postpone my trip to pick up the car.

This is turning into quite an adventure before I even pick up the car!  I admit that it is frustrating to get scammed and to have my schedule potentially set back three weeks, but it hasn't dampened my excitement about getting the R63.

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
10/9/19 7:51 p.m.

Sucks to hear that you got scammed in this process!  I know full well that the wait is worth it!!  Bon chance!  

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
10/11/19 4:36 a.m.

I went back to the Mercedes dealership yesterday.  They were unable to get the Certificate of Conformity expedited, so I mailed the documents to Mercedes France myself this morning.  Looking back at their website, I should get the certificate in 3 weeks max, so it could arrive sooner.

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
10/14/19 7:29 a.m.

I went by the Prefecture (the French version of State government offices) this morning to see if I could get any help with getting a temporary registration so that I can get temporary plates and drive the car back to France.  France has no equivalent to the DMV.  All car registration is basically done on the internet, but I was told that there was still one person at the Prefecture who could help with difficult cases.  Unfortunately, that person was not in today, so I have to go back tomorrow morning.

On the upside, I have now received the pdf file of the French translations of the Swedish car title and the Swedish car inspection.  The originals should arrive in the mail on Wednesday or Thursday.  According to the French Post Office site, Mercedes received my request for the Certificate of Conformity today.  I'm hoping that they will get the request processed and sent to me asap, but it can take up to 3 weeks.

Cheery thought of the day: The seller has informed me that anytime after November 1, Sweden could  have snow.

All of the waiting, and the fact that ever step forward takes 2 -4 x longer than expected, is frustrating, but I'm convinced that it will be worth it!

Dammit
Dammit Reader
10/14/19 7:37 a.m.

With regards to the tow hitch I do not believe that any AMG is homologated for towing - number six on the chassis plate will tell you what your max permitted towing weight is:

If there's nothing there then you can't tow with the vehicle (legally).You could mount a hitch to mount things like a bike carrier.

 

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
10/14/19 4:21 p.m.
Dammit said:

With regards to the tow hitch I do not believe that any AMG is homologated for towing - number six on the chassis plate will tell you what your max permitted towing weight is:

If there's nothing there then you can't tow with the vehicle (legally).You could mount a hitch to mount things like a bike carrier.

 

I'll check it out after I pick up the R63.  However, I have driven an R63 with a factory hitch (it was available as an option in Europe, but perhaps not in the U.S.).

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
10/16/19 9:57 a.m.

Tuesday was a good day.  I returned to the French government offices.  The person I needed to see was there . . . but she told me that even if I got the temporary registration, it was only good for driving inside France.  I knew from my own research that this was no longer the case, and when she told me that if I wanted to get it anyway, there was someone there who could help me get it then and there, I jumped at the chance.

I was sent me  to a young girl whose job was to help the computer illiterate with the new procedures that are all done online.  I had already been on the government site and had not been able to figure out how to get the temporary registration, so I waited for the young girl to show me how simple it was and make me feel like an idiot.  However, after only a few minutes, she was looking perplexed and left to get her supervisor.  A young man came out and he tried a few things on the computer.  Finally, he told me that neither they, nor I could do this online.  I had to go to a car professional registered with the government, in order to get the temporary registration.  I informed him that I had already contacted two companies on their official list and both had said that they couldn't help me since the car was not in France.  He gave me the name and contact information for another company, and when I got to their office, there were two men behind the counter.  I explained my situation and one of the men said, "We can't do that."  My heart sank.  Then the other man spoke up and said, "Yes, we can do that."  15 minutes later, I left with my temporary registration and my temporary license plates!

Last night I bought train and plane tickets for my wife and I to go pick up the R63 the first week of November.  It was like taking 10 steps forward.

Then this morning, there was another small step back.  I was checking to see if the license plates and the license plate support would fit in my small suitcase (they don't), when I noticed that the license plate support for the front bumper was quite a bit smaller than the license plate.  I called Mercedes and was informed that they had ordered the license plate support that goes with my car, based on the VIN.  However, my car started life in Italy, which has a smaller license plate in the front than France.  I had told the parts person when I ordered the part that I was buying my car in Sweden and that it had originally come from Italy and that I wanted the license plate support for France.  The person I talked to today immediately understood what had happened, and he said he would try to get the correct part for France (I have to call tomorrow to see if he was successful), but he was doubtful that the dealer would refund the Italian license plate support that they sold me.  So we'll see tomorrow.

1955W196S
1955W196S New Reader
10/17/19 12:48 p.m.

I had a couple of interesting conversations with the Mercedes Parts Dept. rep today.  They will take back the Italian license plate holder that they sold me.  He knows someone who has an R Class, but not an R63.  He used his friend's VIN to order a front license plate holder, but he doesn't know if it will fit the R63.  I know that there are some differences in the AMG and non-AMG front bumpers, but it is not clear from the photos if there is a difference in the shape in the area where the license plate holder is attached.

After thinking about it, I realized that in all my looking, I had gotten several VINs for R63s in different European countries.  One of the VINs that I have is for an R63 in Spain, where the license plates are the same size as in France.  I gave the Parts rep that VIN and he found a different part number from the one that he had ordered.  But he can't guarantee that this part will fit my car, though it should.  He gave me the part number, but a google search revealed nothing of interest (the part is A2518850581 if anyone has access to more specific MB parts info).

It is amazing that with the VIN, they can give you the exact part numbers for anything that you need for your car, but in this case (it may be the only case?), the part number that the computer says is the right part, is not the right part because it is an Italy specific part.  I wish I knew someone else in France with an R63 that began life in France because a search using a French R63 VIN should give us the right part number.

If these things were $20, I'd just buy one after another until I found the one that fit properly, but at $120 a pop for a piece of plastic I'd just as soon get it right the first time.

NoahWeb
NoahWeb New Reader
10/17/19 6:29 p.m.

Yikes!! $120 for a plate holder!! 
 

I removed mine for air flow reasons. Gotta keep those fluids cool!! Only once as a Military Police person asked me about it. 
 

good luck in the hunt for the part!!

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