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Old 02-19-2006, 10:45 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 9
Tell me about the 240D (MS)

I posted in "Tech Help" about the best MB for a beginner. I got all sorts of good info and really appreciate it. I drive back and forth to school on the interstate. Total driving is 85% highway, 15% city. When I posted in "Tech Help", I wanted to find info on gas V8s but hearing people talk about the diesel Benzes, maybe I'm barking up the wrong tree! I like the 300D because it is a big tank and has all those creature comforts, but I really don't need all that. My neighbor has a 240D that is in rough shape, but it got me to thinking. Crank windows, 4-cylinder diesel, MB good looks. For reliability and economy, would the 240D be a good first Benz for somebody? How high are parts and what are approximate prices on cars? I've been driving a '97 Chevy S-10, V6, with only 72,000 miles. Nice truck and 21 mpg, but I hardly ever need a truck. Whatever you can offer about the 240D is very much appreciated.

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Old 02-19-2006, 11:16 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Bay area, California
Posts: 51
240D as good first car

The beauty of the Mercedes 240D is its simplicity. No computers to worry
about, it is easy to learn to "wrench" on one, and they are safe.

Most would say to get a manual transmission. I'd agree.

As with most older cars, condition is everything. Try to get one that is
clean, well-maintained, and basically the way you want it, as they are out
there, and not expensive to buy that way. To get one that is "rough" is
subjective. Do you want to "restore" it? If so, it will cost you some money,
even if you do the labor yourself.

Much better to find one that someone has care for and buy it ( unless you
can get one for next to nothing).

Most likely, you will grow tired of it before it wears out. They are known for
being able to rack up alot of miles. Don't be afraid of a high-milage car if
it has been maintained.

As for safety, you cannot beat it.

Hope this helps.

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Old 02-20-2006, 01:10 AM
Posts: n/a
Many people here will say they are S-L-O-W. 0-60 in 19.5+ seconds when in good running condition. A 1.0L Geo Metro's 0-60 is 12.7 seconds. They take a bit of planning to drive them or they can become a road hazard.

Simple, yes.
Fast, no.
Good MPG, around 22-33 depending greatly on driving habits. (A 300D turbo can average within 3-5mpg of a 240D and has nearly twice the power.)
It would be a good idea to stay away from an automatic unless you can't drive a stick or want to go even slower.
Repairs are pretty close between a 240D and a 300D turbo. Less engine bay room on a 300D and only automatic trannys.
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Old 02-20-2006, 08:50 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Annapolis, MD
Posts: 650
These guys hit it right on the head. I started with a 240D manual and now have a 300D and 300SD. As much as I loved the 240D, I much prefer the 300D. Both are very durable (see my signature).
1984 300Sd 210k

Former cars:
1984 300D 445k (!!) (Strider) Original (and not rebuilt) engine and transmission. Currently running on V80 ( 80% vegetable oil, 20% petroleum products). Actually not, taking a WVO break.
1993 300d 2.5 275k. Current 120/day commuter
1981 300SD 188k (Hans) Killed by a deer
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Old 02-20-2006, 11:38 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Geographically challenged on the S.W shores of Lake Michigan in S,E Wisconsin
Posts: 1,160
we have 2

one is the plain jane version and the toher is the fancy car, yellow fogs, power windows and sunroof. both are automatics. the plain car is faster than the fancy. the plain one is as fast as a 5 cyl na mb. no one can explain why. you don't list a location in your name but if its a cold weather site make sure the block heater works or install one. here is a list of things to look for and do before and after taking possession of your car. it has been put together thru experience not foresight.

stuff to look for in a used car

1. Hoodpad still attached? about 80 bucks.
2. Are the panels around the front jack points still there?
3. Is that front fender loose? it may be rusted underneath.
4. Pull the cover off the spare and pull the tire. can you see sunlight?
5. Pull the cover on the other side where the jack and emergency kit are. same question.
6. Are the outside lips of the wheel arch rusted thru?
7. You really need to drive the car. does it track straight?
8. Rock the front fenders. do the shocks squeak? when you look at them is there fluid leaking from them?
9. Does the motor have oil all over it? is the bottom covered in oil? bad leak somewhere. usually the turbo return line from under the air cleaner.
10. Speaking of the air cleaner does it rock? broken mounts. cheep.
11. Is there rust around the rear window?
12. Does the rear hatch stay up w/o using a broom handle? nabout 30 bucks each.
13. Does the car have a sunroof? get a couple gallons of water and pour one over the front corners. if water comes into the car the drains need work. this involves taking the headliner apart. i did it. my wife was very helpful.
14. Pull the battery. is the tray in one piece?
15. Is the bulkhead under the battery tray still one piece or has a hole opened up? expensive weld job for a trained person.
16. Clean out under the hood springs. you can stand up the hood. is the area under the accumulated debris still in one piece? more welding.
17. Just for snicks, does the radio work? does the antenna go up and down. its electric.
18. Do the heater controls work? it might just be a connection issue like on mine or it might be the complicated controls. i don't know. mine is horizontal. the complicated one is vertical. a new one is expensive.

4 and 5 are pertinent to the wagon so if you are looking at a sedan get crazy and pull the mat in the trunk. look at the spare well for rust. pull the plastic inner fenders and look for sunlight or rust.

Stuff to change

1. The oil
2. The oil filter
3. The primary fuel filter
4. The secondary fuel filter
5. The air cleaner
6. The power steering fluid
7. The ps filter-You may have the original wooden one.
8. The trans fluid
9. The trans filter
10. The rear diff fluid.
11. The glow plugs
12. The battery.
13. The coolant
14. Change the wipers

Lubricants should be changed to a synthetic. Lucas additives are also highly thought of.

hey, enjoy the hunt and welcome to the madness.
[1981 300 td tdidi 165500 dark brown/palamino-Brownie-mine-3k miles of ownership
1983 240d 162+++ Anthricite grey w/ henna red interior and hella lights-wifes car-Red

the above two cars are for sale
and can be seen on the cars for sale thread here. pix also available.

240d-144+ Manilla Yellow w/ palmino interior-greasecar kit-Blondie-the college kids car

23" gt 21 speed still on original tires-still got the nubs
21" khs tandem
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Old 02-20-2006, 05:25 PM
Hatterasguy's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Milford, CT
Posts: 19,307
Depends what you mean by highway travel. I wouldn't think a 240D would be very good for the typical 75-85 speeds.

If you want a cheap little MB that gets good fuel mileage look at the little C class cars. For like $5k you can get a mid 90's C220. They are reliable, and are pretty nice little cars. Plus they get better fuel mileage then a W123 diesel MB will.

Or you can't go wrong with a well kept 190E 2.3 or 2.6.

Thats a sharp little car for not a lot of money. Plus you would get low 30's on the highway vs high 20's from a 240 or 300D. Not to mention premium gas is cheaper then diesel.
2020 GMC Sierra Denali
2007 Tiara 3200
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Old 02-20-2006, 06:01 PM
H-townbenzoboy's Avatar
Now Y2K Compliant
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 4,268
I believe one of the reasons the thread starter wants a 240D is for it's simplicity, lack of computers and that it's a DIYer friendly vehicle. I doubt the C-class is as DIY friendly as the C-classes, I wonder how many sensors and computers they have anyway?

Board Member of MBCA|Houston

81 MB 300SD, 82 MB 300D Turbo (sold), 04 Lincoln Town Car Ultimate

Sooner or later every car falls apart, ours does it later!
-German Narrator in a MB Promotion Film about the then brand new W123.
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