1982 Mercedes-Benz W123 230E from UK and Ireland


A status symbol for those with no status


The vacuum central locking never worked.

I fitted new brake calipers, because the car had been standing.

The crankshaft on the rebuilt engine used to clatter until oil pressure built up.

General Comments:

I really enjoyed this car, it was very solid, reliable, lovely and smooth to drive, I recommend them to anyone wanting a cheap,distinctive, quality car.

Engines seem to last for 150000 miles, changing the oil helps a lot.

Nobody in the UK apart from me wants the saloon; prices are from £250 to £900.

There are some rusty ones, but many good solid examples with a bit of rust in the wheelarches.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th June, 2003

1982 Mercedes-Benz W123 300D T 3.0 5 cylinder turbo diesel from North America


Much better and roomier than the newer models


I bought the car with the transmission out.

Took it to a MB shop, was quoted $1700 to rebuild it. They replaced it with a factory unit for $2400. Needless to say I was angry. Replaced the plastic fuel filter with a Racor fuel-water separator (highly recommended).

Use Mobil 15-50 synthetic oil exclusively. Engine leaks like a sieve, but the level hardly goes down (1 qt./month) so I live with it.

General Comments:

Very comfortable car compared to the Sebring Convertible I just got rid of, but not as comfortable as my 325I Convertible.

Also the handling is no-where near as good as the Bimmer, but rides better and stops on a dime. Kind of ugly, but it is so dependable that I can't bear to part with it. 30MPG on the road, as long as kept below 70 MPH, otherwise 25.

Wish the seats have more support; my wife doesn't think the car is very comfortable..

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th March, 2003

1982 Mercedes-Benz W123 2.3E from Russia


A beauty not many people can recognize it in Russia


There were actually two critical things I had to do. Soon after I bought the car I had to replace the silencer (on the second day of ownership) and in about a month came another problem which was a badly leaking rad. I had to replace it as well.

General Comments:

I cannot and I shouldn't expect more from a car that old, but performance is far above my expectations anyway.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th November, 2002

1982 Mercedes-Benz W123 230CE 2.3 petrol from UK and Ireland


An affordable beauty


Kick-down switch needed replacing.

Fuses kept blowing (linked to kick-down switch).

Dashboard lights needed replacing.

Ongoing oil leak below rocker cover.

Rad needed new core.

Fuel leak - pipe from tank to pump corroded.

General Comments:

I brought this car from England to Ireland as I wanted one for years. The shape is beautiful, and the pillarless windows are a bonus. Also love the tan upholstery. It needed some work to pass the NCT (=MOT), but nothing serious.

Good acceleration, but sorely let down by only having a 4-speed auto box. Thus engine noise is loud at high speed. Hate the wiper switch - needs funny hand acrobatics.

An affordable classic, parts readily available and plenty of expertise around because of the ubiquitous saloon.

14" alloy wheels let the styling down slightly, but no other alloys will look good on it.

The suspension isn't up to Irish roads, but I can't afford a Hummer.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th October, 2002

28th Jul 2003, 08:58

Yes, I agree with this review, however I recently changed to the 280CE and found the extra grunt superb for the hilly Irish Roads. I also found much improvement over the softer shocks that are in the 230 compared to my 280. And I rebuff any claims that this is a poor mans classic car, and the constant jokes about the "hula hoop" steering wheel, which in my belief adds an endaring characteristic to this classic.

17th May 2004, 06:54

This review is very good. Except for the comment on the rims. I drive a w123 200d and I have mounted the standard MB SLK rims, with 205-16 tires. I believe this is a pretty good alternative for the standard w123 rims!

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