1985 Mercedes-Benz W123 230 E 2.3 fuel injected from Sweden


Timeless modern classic!


Mercedes is quality!

A window crank broke, had to replace it.

There is a vacuum leak that means that the power door locks doesn't operate like it should. This problem is on ALL old MB cars with power locks, and it is almost impossible to find the leaks.

Hit a deer last year in 130 km/h, so I had to replace some sheet-metal, one headlamp and straighten the body. Thanks MB for building tanks like this! I think that a modern Japanese or Korean subcompact had been just a pile of crap after that impact...

The exhaust system leaks.

The 123-series is prone to rust. Lucky for me, my car is 100% free from that!

General Comments:

It is extremely quiet and comfortable, except for the seats that is one of the weak points in older MB:s.

I like the design very much! It is timeless, you almost can't believe that it soon is a 30 year old car! At least this model, silver painted with the newer headlamps. The 70's cars looks a little bit dated today in their weird colors (brown, green, orange...) and round headlamps.

The trunk is almost big enough to swallow a dinosaur...

It is extremely safe, a solid bodywork and heavy weight combined with seatbelt pretensioners and airbag (how many cars had that in 1985?), this 30 year old design still outclasses many new cars!

It was also in very mint condition when I bought it! 2 owners, the last since 1988, and 80 000 km on the meter. Nice!

If they weren't so prone to rust and didn't consume so much fuel, I think that MB still could have sold them today! But probably it is too expensive to build these quality cars today!

The W123 combines classic styling with modern technology. The best of the 60:s with the best of the 80:s. A TIMELESS car!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th November, 2002

15th Feb 2010, 08:33

I have a 1982 230E manual, and I would agree with the above comments. But I find the gas consumption very reasonable, even for today standards. Regarding the vacuum central locking system, finding leaks is not that difficult. You can find all vacuum lines under the front passenger carpet. Just need a hand vacuum pump and the vacuum diagram (buy Haynes repair manual) to find where the leak is located (door, trunk, etc.)

2nd Dec 2018, 13:07

I agree regarding the vacuum leaks. There's plenty of information on the net about tracing the leaks, and the testing kits are cheap.

Aside from that, they are fantastic cars. It's unlikely that the same design effort will ever again be put into a standard sedan.

1985 Mercedes-Benz W123 300D 3.0 I5 turbo diesel from North America


Rollin' in a Benz..


This car has been great. I've only had it a few months, but nothing has gone wrong yet. It runs really smooth and quiet, except at idle like most diesels. No real squeaking sounds or off key engine tones. Interior is in mint shape besides a little bit of black "cancer", as my friend called it, on the side of the driver seat. Air conditioning blows ice cold still and the heat works great! The cassette player wasn't working when I purchased the car, but I have since replaced it. Overall, very good condition.

General Comments:

I had a 2000 Ford Focus, and reliability was non existent. Even with a warranty, I was constantly pulling my car into the Ford dealer. I like Ford cars, but the Focus just wasn't doing it for me. My dad suggested that maybe we sell my car and get a different one. So I tossed the idea around a bit. Then my dad told me that a friend of his had an 85 Mercedes that he wanted to sell. This man had bought the car brand new in 1985. Its always been garage kept and maintained by a specialist. All records are in the glove box. He even had an extra set of 5 wheels with studded tires for use during the winter months. When I first test drove it, I almost said "No WAY!" just because the car seemed so slow and sluggish. I am 18 and I want a fast car! But, after driving the car a bit more and taking it on the highway, I fell in love with the handling and feel of it all. Plus the style of rolling around in a Mercedes. I've had the car for a few months now and I am hooked on Mercedes. I don't know if I'll ever buy any other make of car again! I paid $4500 for my Mercedes which seemed a good deal for what condition and history the car had, not to mention the spare set of wheels with tires. Overall, I'd recommend this car to anyone, even if you are wanting a fast car. This car will change the way you look at cars from the day you get one. Try and find one that has been babied and garage kept and you'll be very pleased!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th September, 2002

12th May 2003, 01:06

Ah, I wholeheartedly agree. I'm a 20 year old college student, and I bought my 1985 300D when I was in my senior year of high school at 18. Sir TurboTank had 229,000 miles when I bought him, and now he has 237,000. It's been an amazing investment, and I can't recommend this car enough to someone with a restricted budget who wants a safe, reliable, economical, comfortable and handsome vehicle. Street racers need not apply.