Not to be matter of fact, but..
1st gear 300E starts began in at least 1991, as mine has the feature. I love it, and even though I know my MPG suffers, I couldn't imagine starting off the line in a sluggish 2nd. Gotta love the whir of the 103, even at 232k miles!
'01 E430, Sport 72,000 mi
'98 C280, 126,500 mi