> Another concern of mine is that it is a 5 cylinder.
Are you concerned that there are too many or too few cylinders? Anyone who's spent time with the OM617 will swear it's the perfect number of cylinders for an engine
> Does any one have an opinion about this particular engine?
The only thing missing from a 78 300D is the turbocharger available in the 82-85 300Ds.
> Are parts available and are there any oddities about this
> engine that I should know about?
Parts are everywhere and no further than the FastLane button at the top of this screen. With a modicum of attention, they have a nasty habit of lasting forever. That's as odd as it gets.
If you're new to Diesels, it can take some doing to get them started in really cold weather. Nothing thinner oil, longer glow times and possibly a block heater can't fix. This engine requires valve adjustments every 15K miles and timing chain replacements every 100K - 150K miles. Neither job should cost more than what it costs to tune up a Honda.