I had pretty much written off a 240d from my shopping list because the two stick shifts that I drove were slow as could be and the one automatic I drove had all kinds of pick up. Consequently, I was not sure what a healthy 240 should run like. And in any event, they all were screaming so much at highway speeds that I feared they wouldn't be very long lived. Then I read your posts and you say you get 500,000 miles out of your motors, and I think you must be driving mostly highway miles.
I have the following questions:
-I though the 4-speeds were supposed to have more pickup than an automatic? Or is it the other way around? Was there possibly something wrong with the 4-speeds I drove? The automatic had all kinds of punch at a stop light (relatively speaking, of course). -What kind of average and highway gas milage do you get? Can these cars withstand constant 70 - 75mph driving without blowing up? They sure sound like they are about to blow up.
-Since my Saab has 198k miles and my '85 Jetta Diesel has around 180k, I'm not afraid of high mileage cars, but I am very afraid of high mileage automatics. I simply don't have the cash to get a mercedes automatic replaced. How long do your automatics last on average, and is there anything I should look for when test driving an automatic. Personally I think that if an owner can show that he has changed the fluid, then you ought to be in good shape, but last month my brother's well cared for heavy duty 700r4 blew a front seal at 140k and needed replacement to the tune of $1,300, so I have thrown that theory out the window.
-lastly, when you buy a Mercedes diesel, are you immediately concerned about the timing chain? How do I know when I should be concerned about it? People say "check the stretch." But I have seen a few diesels with snapped timing chains around 110-130k. Do you just change them as regular maintainence as soon as you buy them, or do you take your chances?
-Lastly, what were the best years for the 240 and 300d? I like non-turbocharged cars models for their simplicity (hence the reason why I am still interested in a 240d if I can find one that runs well as has been well cared for). Thank you.