1981 Mercedes-Benz W123 Reviews - Page 4 of 5

1981 Mercedes-Benz W123 230E 2.3 I4 from Germany

Model year1981
Year of manufacture1981
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 2.3 I4 Automatic
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.2 / 10
Distance when acquired99000 kilometres
Most recent distance134000 kilometres

Summary:

A smooth riding classic car with the quality of Mercedes-Benz

Faults:

Replaced shocks.

Replaced muffler.

Replaced brake pads.

Tightened Timing Belt.

General Comments:

I have inherited this car from my grandfather and it is car is such a wonderful car to own. Yea it had some minor problems as stated, but what would you expect from a 23 year old soon to be 24 year old car? Other than that, this car has never let me down. Always starts up, no matter how cold or hot it is outside.

I always get looks when I drive this car, especially since it is in perfect condition. My grandfather has kept this car in perfect shape, and I plan to do the same, maybe this car will last another 24 years or longer I wouldn't doubt it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th December, 2004

1981 Mercedes-Benz W123 230CE V4 from North America

Model year1981
Year of manufacture1980
First year of ownership2004
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission V4 Manual
Performance marks 4 / 10
Reliability marks 0 / 10
Comfort marks 5 / 10
Dealer Service marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 1 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
3.4 / 10
Distance when acquired69000 miles
Most recent distance69000 miles

Summary:

Nice car

Faults:

Brakes are gone, however does stop.

Starter is shot.

Bad on gas.

The back floor rusted away on the driver's side.

General Comments:

This is my third Euro Benz, hard to find parts for, but I love it.

Good running when it started, it has power and class.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 3rd October, 2004

1981 Mercedes-Benz W123 240D 2.4 diesel from North America

Year of manufacture1981
First year of ownership1985
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 2.4 diesel Automatic
Performance marks 3 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.3 / 10
Distance when acquired0 miles
Most recent distance0 miles

Summary:

A cheap, reliable, fuel sipping luxury car, that is appreciated during times of high gas prices

Faults:

Car was abused, so it needed some work everywhere.

Wood trim needed re-glueing.

Injectors.

Hood star.

Sway bar linkage...etc..etc...etc.

It was abused so...

General Comments:

Comfortable, great on the highway.

Huge steering wheel.

Poor acceleration between 20-40, but after that it gets going good. You have to know how to drive a car like this. If you drive it like your SUV or Minivan, you will be in danger. You need to compensate more for hills, and merging.

The suspension is a little soft, but it's a luxury car.

Just when you think the cheap tires will let go, they just keep sticking. Even after the tires break loose, it's still predictable. Good tires and wheels would compliment this car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th July, 2004

1981 Mercedes-Benz W123 200d 2.0 from France

Year of manufacture1981
First year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 2.0 Manual
Performance marks 5 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.0 / 10
Distance when acquired760000 kilometres
Most recent distance900000 kilometres

Summary:

The last ever built, great working class car

Faults:

The things that have gone wrong are as follows; the top head board of the car cracks with the sun, so one has to cover it with a blanket or something, head gasket filter, rust.

General Comments:

Driving this car means you are not in a hurry, driving this car means that you are a safe driver.

It's got torque, it can pull a wagon, the seats don't sag, they look almost as new, even with 1 million kilometres.

All is safe here, no need to worry, front fog light is great, heater system superb, dashboard well equipped.

This is a car that has got great style, reliable, strong, built from solid Mercedes cast iron. Change the gas oil filter and the oil filter, and you'll drive this baby until you die.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th June, 2004

1981 Mercedes-Benz W123 D 300 turbo diesel from North America

Year of manufacture1981
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 300 turbo diesel Automatic
Performance marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.8 / 10
Distance when acquired120000 miles
Most recent distance180000 miles
Previous carMercedes-Benz W123

Summary:

Reliable, cheap, and fun to drive

Faults:

Oil filter housing gasket leaked.

Left (rear) axle shaft CV-joint boot failed, so I replaced the whole shaft with a used, but still good one.

Cruise control "amp" was causing the cruise control to stutter. Re-soldering the joints on the circuit board solved the problem.

Heater "mono valve" failed so the car had heat only when driving slowly. A mono valve insert fix it.

General Comments:

I think this car will run until the body rust finally overwhelms it! It is tough, long-lasting, easy to work on, comfortable, and cheap to operate. I like them so much I own a number of them. The cars without turbos are only just able to keep up with city traffic, but the ones with turbos are much faster - and often get _better_ fuel economy. A wonderful car!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th May, 2004

1981 Mercedes-Benz W123 240D 2.4L 4 cylinder diesel from North America

Year of manufacture1981
First year of ownership2004
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 2.4L 4 cylinder diesel Manual
Performance marks 1 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.8 / 10
Distance when acquired113000 miles
Most recent distance113000 miles
Previous carAlfa Romeo Spider

Faults:

One of the vacuum-powered door locks developed a leak and caused a quirk such that the engine would not turn off unless the passenger door was locked. This went from being initially humorous to annoying, but was easily remedied by plugging off the appropriate vacuum line under the hood. The vacuum locks are a persistent and common problem.

The car has a few oil leaks.

General Comments:

After owning an abused Alfa Romeo Spider, I now own an abused 240D :) The difference in quality is immediately apparent with the Benz. The car still feels rock solid and straight despite the rather huge front bash the previous owners have bestowed upon it. Additionally, all the car's switches and functions work perfectly and feel good in contrast with the Alfa.

I got the car for free, so the price was certainly right, but even pristine examples are normally dirt cheap.

The low comfort score is due to the noise and high gearing of the engine. The seats are actually very comfortable and one sits nice and high with an upright chair-like position, which is a refreshing change from your typical modern sedan. The windshield is also at a nice tall angle and the car feels very roomy and airy, despite it's relatively small size.

Interior comfort and durability get high marks. The car also has a great sense of style and is perfect for the hippie type or anyone who can appreciate old-school chromeyness over modern anonymity. Another positive point is that the body panels feel like they're an inch thick, which, in addition to the large mouldings on the side, means you can park anywhere worry-free.

The turning radius is good and you can squeeze around tight angles pretty well, even on the crowded streets of Boston, which is the car's initial and present stomping grounds (as evidenced by the large amount of ancient "back bay" parking stickers in the rear window).

The fuel economy of the diesel is outstanding as is the durability. The odometer is broken and the estimated mileage is probably around twice the indicated number, certainly over 200k. This is on an abused car and there are in essence no problems to speak of!

It is the perfect beater due to its dependability and super minimal costs to run, however I wouldn't recommend it for long trips only, because the engine noise and low speed would get to you.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 5th April, 2004

21st Jun 2007, 20:04

Is there anything anyone with a 240D has ever done about the noise factor? It would be awesome to be riding in this car if it weren't so whiny/noisy.

12th Jun 2008, 11:42

I have a 5 speed manual 240d. Not too bad, but motorway cruising could be quieter. May adding some sound insulation to the bulkhead is in order.

1st May 2009, 17:40

Hi W 123 240D Friends!

I am a proud owner of a 85´W123 240TD in Austria /Europe.

I simply love the car!! 20 years ago I wanted to get exactly this car once, three years ago I finally got myself this one. The car has classy style and an understated and timeless design!!

I already put quite a lot money in it to fix several things, but still: the driving experience is unmatched even with modern cars and I´ll never change to another one!! I love rides on highways and on the European "Autobahn" the most.

The engine is a slow tank, very reliable but also very noisy which I plan to solve as follows: Michelin silent tires, change to a manual 5 speed transmission, LOKARI plastic caps in all 4 wheel houses (rust prevention & sound deadening), QUIET-CAR (R) sound deadening emulsion on inside of car cabin. With this "package" I assume the noise will decrease to a bearable level.

But anyway: I always love to ride in this great car !

NB / Vienna - Austria.

Average review marks: 7.2 / 10, based on 17 reviews