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  #1  
Old 11-30-2008, 07:03 PM
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Mercedes in Morocco

Hi
Just got back from a trip that included Marrakesh, and Tangier's. I have never seen so many 240D and 300Ds in my life, most of them Taxi's Cabs ,
I am talking literally a hundred + in a day,and most of them not in bad condition,rust is not a problem there i presume.Anyway there seems to be an large supply of these cars in some parts of the world.
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Mercedes in Morocco-tn_pict0271.jpg   Mercedes in Morocco-tn_pict0279.jpg   Mercedes in Morocco-tn_pict0521.jpg  
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  #2  
Old 11-30-2008, 07:05 PM
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Very interesting, but those may be the smallest pics ever posted. Have any bigger ones? Would love to see them in cab form.....
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  #3  
Old 11-30-2008, 07:06 PM
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When I visited Morocco last year I had a few memorable rides in their 'Grand Taxis'. On one trip they stuffed 7 people (3 front, 4 back) into a 240D and proceeded to drive us over some pretty severe mountain passes. That was a slow drive!
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  #4  
Old 11-30-2008, 07:30 PM
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That part of the world has a "Mediterranean climate" (duh!) so rust should not be a major problem unless you are right on the coast in the salt sea air. In 1979 I spent a couple of months in Side-bel-Abbes, Algeria, and although I saw a lot of old, beat-up cars, I don't recall seeing a lot of rust.

All of the well-to-do folks drove Mercedes or Citroen. The upper middle class drove VW or Peugeot. The lower middle class had donkeys. The poor walked. We contractors all drove factory-owned white 304 Peugeots with green tourist license plates. They all had to be removed from Algeria when the contract was finished, even the wrecked ones. In the factory parking lot the 304s all looked alike; you had to memorize your license plate number to tell which was your car.

Jeremy
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  #5  
Old 11-30-2008, 11:29 PM
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Mercedes is king in most of North Africa. My family is from Egypt and I would visit every year or two during the summer. I developed a love for the older euros- Peugeot 504s' Fiat 124s' and of course, the W123 platform. There is still a great number of those cars surviving. Every Mercedes platform is represented in North Africa and each chassis has it's nickname. For example, the 190E chasis is called "the pig", the w126 is "the alligator" and the newer big body S-class is called "cocaine" because of the high sticker price can't remember what the nickname is for the w123
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  #6  
Old 12-01-2008, 06:53 AM
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When I was there in seventy three most of the taxis were simca arondes like my first car. I felt right at home whenever I rode in one. I had my first mb the sixty one two twenty b fintail at the time. It was out of place there since it had a lot of rust.

It was an interesting country. For cross country jaunts the morrocans used a lot of fifties american cars, like chrysler saratogas but running small diesel four cylinders. You would see them trundling along in the open countryside with arabs in chalabas stacked in there like cordwood.

Not many cars on the road in the open country at that time, and a lot of folks walking or riding bikes and donkeys. Not many tractors in the fields either, more animal drawn wooden plows.

It was beautiful country though and the people were very friendly and helpful.
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Old 12-01-2008, 09:46 AM
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'88 190D 2.2 with 220k goes to Africa.

ABOUT THIS BOOK ("My Mercedes is (not) For Sale")



“Oh Lord, won’t you buy me a Mercedes Benz?”
—Janis Joplin

A journalist’s intrepid endeavor to sell his used car abroad results in a high-spirited and revealing look at West Africa.

“Look, there’s my car,” I say, pointing at my Mercedes in the parking lot.
“Where?” a fellow desert traveler asks.
“There, that Mercedes,” I say.
He looks at me, questioning. “You want to drive that through the Sahara?”

Jeroen van Bergeijk came up with what seemed like a great scheme for making a quick profit: buy a clunker of a car in his native Amsterdam and resell it in the Third World, where a market even for jalopies still thrives. His chariot of choice is a rusted-out 1988 Mercedes 190D with 220,000 kilometers on its odometer; his route will take him from Holland through Morocco, across the Sahara, and into some of the least trodden parts of Africa.


My Mercedes Is Not for Sale is a rollicking tale of an innocent abroad. The author finds himself facing a driving challenge akin to the Dakar Rally but encounters obstacles never dreamed of by race-car drivers: active minefields, occasional banditry—mostly by the border guards—and a teenage, chain-smoking desert guide with a fondness for Tupac lyrics. Food and water are scarce, sandstorms are frequent, and all he has to patch up his many car breakdowns thousands of miles from civilization is a bar of soap, some duct tape, and a pair of women’s nylons.

Then there’s the coup he survived.

My Mercedes Is Not for Sale captures more than the adventure—it vividly portrays the impact of globalization on Africa through a surprise-filled journey into its thriving car culture, while asking the question: is the white man’s burden really a used car?


Written by Jeroen Van Bergeijk
Category: Travel
Publisher: Broadway
Format: Trade Paperback, 224 pages
Pub Date: July 2008
Price: $12.95
ISBN: 978-0-7679-2869-4 (0-7679-2869-5)

Also available as an eBook.





ABOUT THIS AUTHOR


JEROEN VAN BERGEIJK is a journalist based in Amsterdam and has written for The New York Times, Wired, and many other publications in Europe and the United States.
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  #8  
Old 12-01-2008, 10:00 AM
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those cross country taxis stuffed with people and running Perkins diesels bring back memories. some good, some bad.
i was in Kenitra in the early 70's and Mercedes were everywhere. Lots of Fiats and other POS.
Gas was $4 a gallon then.
Hash was cheap though.
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  #9  
Old 12-01-2008, 12:26 PM
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"Lots of Fiats and other POS"....those Fiats are no joke man. The most famous of the Lada cars is modeled after the Fiat 124. I think the incredible thing is that there are so many surviving w123s' that are currently daily drivers in Africa. I meet a guy a couple years ago, who came to the U.S. to load up containers worth of junk Mercedes parts cars. They sold very expensive in Mauritania, which borders Morocco. The junk cars here, of course would sell for only a couple hundreds of dollars. I can't imagine another part of the world that currently has more W123s' on the roads.
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  #10  
Old 12-01-2008, 03:02 PM
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You folks have seen the Top Gear Episode diving across Botswana right? May's 230E was an object lesson in the topic of this thread.

- Peter.
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  #11  
Old 12-08-2008, 01:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brownrice78 View Post
Mercedes is king in most of North Africa. My family is from Egypt and I would visit every year or two during the summer. I developed a love for the older euros- Peugeot 504s' Fiat 124s' and of course, the W123 platform. There is still a great number of those cars surviving. Every Mercedes platform is represented in North Africa and each chassis has it's nickname. For example, the 190E chasis is called "the pig", the w126 is "the alligator" and the newer big body S-class is called "cocaine" because of the high sticker price can't remember what the nickname is for the w123

The 123 is the female pig, the 124 is the zalamoka = the duck`s ass and the early 90`s S class is called the ghost

I would like to get a Fiat 124 sport coupe here in the US
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