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Old 03-27-2008, 02:51 PM
Coming back from burnout
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: in the Pacific Northwest
Posts: 2,274
Whats going on in the W124 (aluminum head) world these days? I once owned one...

Whats going on in the W124 (with the problematic aluminum head) world these days?

I once owned 87 was a really nice car and could do a 100 mph for hours on end without even breaking a sweat. I replaced those problematic control arm bushings, what a nasty job...I used to take it up and down the turnnpike in NJ at 6 am at a buck and the state troopers never said much because the trucks did 100 also. But it had that problematic aluminum head that made me nervous.

So I sold that and decided to stay with the 2 W123's I woned which I felt had better reliability and longevity and I know I made the right choice. The W124 was a D%%& expensive car to maintain and the parts were a ton and they didnt have a thousand clones like the W123 sitting in yards nationwide ready to throw their parts to you...

Any updates on the W124 world? Are they dying away or running strong? I dont se many 300D W124 87 to 90 Diesels on the road --let me restate --in the last year I have never seen ANY
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Old 03-27-2008, 02:56 PM
babymog's Avatar
Loose Cannon - No Balls
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Northeast Indiana
Posts: 10,767
They're running strong, I have 2, no head problems on original #14 heads with a combined mileage over 450,000miles (knocking on wood).

I hear about how terrible they are, but only a couple of people have ever posted that they had cracked heads (same head on the SD/SDL 603 in the '80s). I guess you have to give up the ability to run without engine coolant if you want an aluminum cross-flow head LOL!

There really weren't a lot sold in comparison to the 123 diesels, most Mercedes sold in the mid-'80s to early '90s were gas, and they didn't even offer a diesel 124 or 201 for part of that (no '86, '88, '89 300D for example) due to the soft diesel market in the US.

Gone to the dark side

- Jeff
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Old 03-27-2008, 03:47 PM
Posts: n/a
I see them around fairly often, last month I was working at a power plant in VA and my parking space was right next to one (he was blood donor of the month or something). I see a few of them around denver too.
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Old 03-27-2008, 06:40 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Bellevue WA
Posts: 174
Wait a couple weeks and you will see mine

My 87 300D with new (4 years-less than 30Km) factory crate engine with a #20 head suffered either a failed head gasket or a cracked head. Pressure testing the cooling system resulted in a hydrolock. It is at the dealer being repaired under the warranty that came with the engine. The reason I went with the factory engine was the long 4year 50Km warranty that came with it-at a price. This engine has never overheated but from the time that it was installed I noticed a wisp of greyish-white smoke. Interestingly, even the dealer sends the heads out to be pressure tested and milled.
87 300D 265Kmi
Factory rebuilt crate 603.96x engine at 200K
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Old 03-27-2008, 07:19 PM
Registered User
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 2,220
Never mind W124 diesels. I never see 124's at all, period end. And I used to see them around all the time.

The only Benzes I see regularly are the 300SDL's the older 300SD's, a few 560SEC's, and a handful of 240/300D's. That's all I ever see these days. Almost all Benzes around here are either W126 or W211's (maybe a few 210's). The W126 is definitely the most common.

The W124's are bloody Hell to work on. But they perform impressively when done right.
1987 300SDL (324000)

1986 Porsche 951 (944 Turbo) (166000)

1978 Porsche 924 (99000)

1996 Nissan Pathfinder R50 (201000)
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