Owner back with an update. I have been stupid. I sold the Mercedes for a 2000 Vauxhall Omega estate with LPG conversion. While the the Omega does the equivalent of 50+mpg in fuel costs compared to 20mpg for the Mercedes, I miss the old car already. I feel I have stabbed an old friend in the back and bought a whimsical mistress. Both cars have done the same 130,000 miles, but the Vauxhall is 10 years younger, and the technology shows. However I have already spent nearly £2,000 on the Omega getting it sorted. Will it be worth it? I had no fear of the Mercedes reaching 250,000 miles, but I am having second thoughts about the 2 litre Ecotec engine reaching this - even on very clean LPG. Damn Damn Damn. If this Omega falls apart on me over the next few years I know exactly what I will be buying - a late W124 diesel estate. WHAT WAS I THINKING!!
Owner of original comments back again. I have now sold the 2000 Vauxhall (Opel)Omega estate. While the car was built well and very comfortable I was wearing it out at 20,000 miles a year. While it was cheap to buy, by 140,000 miles I was spending quite a bit of money (see previous comment) keeping to the high standards I need from 130+ miles a day driving. Plus I really missed the seven seats. Clearly the Omega was not built to the same standards as the 1989 Mercedes. However the fuel consumption of the Mercedes (20mpg) was a bit grim. So I have ruined my finances and bought a 1997 Mercedes 300TD. This has been just stunning. The performance is more than enough, 35mpg with 40+mpg possible at constant 60mph. Is running on ~10% bio-diesel with far reduced C02 and other harmful compounds compared to Omega LPG. As a seven seater like my last Mercedes it has been superb. Carried half a tonne of logs in it the other day. Build of W210 not as good as W124 but better than Omega. Although diesel, the 177bhp is not far short of the 190bhp of the previous 3 liter petrol W124, but the torque delivery is something else...40 to 90mph will lock up the seat belts! Despite the accountants ruining the MB brand in the 1990's this is still a superb machine. I doubt I will ever buy a different brand again.
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