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Old 09-29-2004, 09:32 PM
PatrickW's Avatar
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 349
Originally Posted by TimFreeh
Let's try it this way... Suppose MB called you on the phone and said that you were the winner of a contest. The prize was either...

1) a 2005 CDI


2) A 1982 300D turbo that had been pulled off the assembly floor immediately after it was built in 1982. The car had been gone over by the best MB technicians MB had to offer and was proclaimed to be "new"

Both cars would be offered with bumper to bumer 4 year/50K warranties.

Which would you select?
Well, we have to talk "real world" here. MB isn't going to call me, and I'm not going to win anything...

However, I definitely am going to buy another diesel.

To that end, I went to a local MB dealer who had advertised that they had a new CDI "on hand". Knowing that they wanted $56,000 for it, my wife and I went to look, and I was allowed to test drive it.

So now - speaking for just me - my choice is either a $56,000 CDI that I can take home today if I want, or a ~$5,000 W123 that I'll have to shop around for.

I've driven both. In my opinion, the CDI is a wonderful car, but it's not worth $56,000. A nice W123, on the other hand, is worth - to me - what appears to be the market price for a good example (ie, about $5,000).

So that's where I'm coming from.

- Patrick

PS - It'll be fascinating to see how the market evolves with respect to *used* CDI's in the next 4 or 5 years...

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Old 09-29-2004, 09:51 PM
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Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Miami, FL
Posts: 645
CDI vs W123: weighing the choices

The new CDI is $56K, my 85 300TD cost me $3000. I might like a new car better: obviously it might go a lot longer before something went blooey, however, when this did happen, the damned new thing has proprietary software, and after the warranty was up, I would be at the mercy of paying $125 at the Stealership or trading it in. There would be little hope of me fixing it myself. I HATE to be forced into a corner like that. I think engine covers look tres kewl, but of course, they make fixing the damned thing more intimidating. I do not fancy working on a vehicle smarter than I do.

And of course the difference between 35 mpg for the CDI and 26 mpg for my TD is only 9 mpg. $51,000 would buy a HUGE amount of fuel. I would have to buy collision insurance, and if some fool ran into me, they would insist on fixing it and then I would be driving in a car possibly damaged. If it were flooded out in a Hurricane, the same would apply, but my old TD has many fewer electronic gizmos for the water to ruin.

A friend of mine has an 86 Jaguar XJSC V-12 that she has driven since new and for 150K miles. It is drop-dead gorgeous British racing green, but a real bear to fix. An 86 Posche or BMW would have been a far better car in terms of reliability. The Jag can't be worth more than $1500 in its present state, because the engine needs thousands to get it running right.

Simpler is better than complex unless the complex is perfect.
Cheaper is better than expensive, all other things being equal.
Car payments suck. I made my last in 1973 and I am not going to ever finance a car again.

Semibodacious Transmogrifications a Specialty

1990 300D 2.5 Turbo sedan 171K (Rudolf)
1985 300D Turbo TD Wagon 219K (Remuda)

"Time flies like and arrow, yet fruit flies like a banana"
---Marx (Groucho)
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