1985 Mercedes-Benz W123 300D Turbo 617.952 turbo diesel from North America
Strong, stoic, a true warrior
Very little has gone wrong with the car.
Welded a hole in the floor pan.
Replaced alternator (open on winding).
Replaced right rear CV shaft.
Replaced old exhaust mid-pipe.
Replaced 24 year old suspension bushings.
Replaced 24 year old guide rod mounts.
Replaced 24 year old shocks and struts.
Replaced front and rear rotors (normal maintenance).
Rebuilt calipers (normal maintenance).
Replaced pads (normal maintenance).
Excellent car. Extremely overbuilt. 3rd owner. Bought from 2 second long term owner for $400 cad. Needed new rotors and pads, a small hole in floor pan welded up and an exhaust mid-pipe. Living a snow belt will do this..
Daily driver for the past two years. Incredibly reliable. Starts with one flash of the glow plugs. Seats are excellent build, one can sit in them for hours on end and NOT feel fatigued. Sturdy MB Tex material looks great even after 24 years of service.
Virtually everything is user serviceable. Lack of electrics is a wonderful thing. Car handles quite well for a car it's size. Its turning radius is amazing to say the least.
Parts are not as expensive as one may be led to believe. Tons of aftermarket support for this car. I haven't stepped into a dealership for years.
It's not as quick as one would expect - 125hp diesel pushing a 3600 lb sedan does not equate extreme "off the line" speed. Once turbo spools up, it moves quite nicely.
It is critical to make sure, if one was to buy one of these fine cars, that they make sure they get some sort of maintenance history on the car. It is very important. A cheap Benz can turn out to be a very expensive Benz if one is not mechanically competent.
As long as the maintenance has been kept up, these cars will run for years..
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 30th March, 2009
3rd Jan 2020, 07:56
A follow up to my original post. It's now 2020, that TD sold in 2012, Now enjoy a '77 300D running strong with 325,000 km, a '79 240D with 257,000 km, and a '85 W201 190D. Fantastic cars, easy to work on, and most parts still readily available in the aftermarket. Maintain them PROPERLY and they will provide you with many years of faithful, reliable service. My children drive W123's and W201's and all diesel.
4th Jan 2020, 15:29
Thanks for the updates after so many years. These are good cars - the definition of a quality classic from the 70s/80s/early 90s. It's just a shame Mercedes cars of post year 2000 probably will not be looked back at as classics in the same way due to lots of electronic issues. Myself I live in the UK and I'm looking at getting a 1994 220 E-class (very last of the older shape). Would not touch the late 1990s onwards stuff. Newer ones also have a reputation for rust.