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  #1  
Old 11-14-2001, 01:10 PM
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'83 300TD 181K for $2900...thoughts, please.

In my local paper this morning I saw an ad for a 1983 300TD that only has 181,000 miles on it. The ad says the car is "near mint condition". I know the obvious thing to check is the rear leveling system. Other than that, the car is the same as any other 123 car. I haven't called the number yet to get further details, but it does sound promising. I was just wondering if anyone had any thoughts on these cars. I don't know why, but I have always wanted a W123 wagon, especially if it's silver. As everyone knows, it's not often to find one for sale. I had thought that I could buy it, fix up what ever may be needed and keep the car until my daughter is old enough to drive and give it to her. When I mentioned the car to my wife, she was thinking the same thing. So, if anyone out there had/has one of these or knows someone who has one, other than the rear suspension sys., what is there to look for and is this price out of line. I calculated the mileage to average out to a little over 10K a year.
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  #2  
Old 11-14-2001, 01:16 PM
turbodiesel
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Definately check the rear suspension.. see how the tranny shifts. If its closer to me, I could take a look at it for you.

John
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  #3  
Old 11-14-2001, 02:29 PM
unkl300d's Avatar
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not shabby

Price does not seem unreasonable since good wagons
seem to be desirable.
Color, third seat, working A/C etc. can establish whether
it is worthwhile to get involved.
Basically, as with any used car purchase, the average
initial mechanical work is about $1000, less if you do the work yourself.
Good Luck and post outcome!
check for rust etc.
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  #4  
Old 11-14-2001, 03:14 PM
LarryBible
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I don't mean to throw icewater on your excitement, but I have driven lots of miles to look at cars that turned out to be total junk. Don't get too excited until you see the car, drive it and at least get an initial idea of it's overall condition.

On the other hand, occasionally you can come across a total gem and for whatever reason they just don't know what they're worth. In that case, if you don't move in a timely manner you stand a good chance of missing it. For that reason it's always good to be prepared to give the car a total look over in case it does turn out to be a gem.

The 123's are not as desirable on the general market as they used to be and there are lots of much newer used cars in a flooded market right now. This is having an effect of driving down the prices on cars such as this. The 123 is old enough now that most of the market consists of enthusiasts like ourselves.

Best of luck with it,
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  #5  
Old 11-15-2001, 01:47 AM
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OK, I got more details about the car. I spoke with the owner over the phone. The car is metallic silver/blue with blue MB Tex. The car has been serviced by both the local Mercedes dealer and an independent mechanic which used to work at the same dealership. The gentleman said he and his wife own 5 cars with only 3 drivers in the household. He said it was too nice to give to his teenage kids, besides they want Hondas and 4-Runners. He said there is no rust and that the car is always garaged, as it was by the first owner. This gentleman said he has owned it for the last 5 years. When I asked about the leveling system he said he hadn't had any problems. He said that he thought that system was for keeping the car level during cornering. This leads me to believe he didn't do much hauling in this car. I forgot to ask if it had the 3rd seat or not, unless they all came that way. He also said it starts fine in the cold. Obviously all these claims will be looked into when I look at the car on Sat./Sun.
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  #6  
Old 11-15-2001, 02:15 AM
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Rick,

We bought "our" wagon a year and a half ago for my wife. We have since bought her a Taurus, so I drive the wagon. I LOVE this car. We paid 4k, the car had 200K miles, which in hindsight was a little too high considering its condition. We've had transmission trouble and a/c trouble. From experience I can tell you that when the tranny is ready to be replaced, bite the bullet and buy a factory rebuilt or better. Don't have a friend of a friend fix it. I do all the other work myself and have benefitted a great deal from the info on this site. My two cents: if the car is even in very good condition, the price seems reasonable. I drive mine 300 miles per week for my work commute and 2-4 times per year I take it on fishing trips, loaded with gear, lots of gravel and dirt roads. See my earlier post "Diesel Wagon Conquers Northern California".
Dave
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  #7  
Old 11-15-2001, 08:40 AM
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I do remember that posting about California. Like I said I'll definetly check out the "money" areas, such as the rear suspension, tranny A/C etc. Does anyone know what this silver/blue color was actually called?
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  #8  
Old 11-17-2001, 03:37 PM
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Well I am picking the car up on Tuesday. I finally got a chance to see and drive the car. The car needs nothing more than a good exterior/interior detailing, that's it. The A/C compressor has been recently replaced at a dealership. The rear suspension does not sag. The gas struts that hold up the rear hatch have recently been replaced. The tires are less than a year old, including the spare. It even has a sunroof, albeit manual, but it's still a sunroof. It does not have the third seat, but I wouldn't feel right having my kids sitting by the rear bumper anyways. The owner religously changed the oil every 2500-3000 with Kendall 15W-40. Also always used Hengst oil filters. I don't even need to do an oil change, as he had just did one 1K miles ago. The fuel filters currently on the car have Mercedes written on them. The only rust is just a couple of traces on the rear fender lip. I checked underneath and everything looked good. The owner said he had a dealer call him and offered to buy the car sight unseen. This info he told me after I moved up the time that I wanted to look at the car. Originally I was going to look at it this Sunday, but something told me I should do it sooner. So I called and ask if I could look at it on Friday. He said that it was a good thing I called when I did because this guy from the dealership, in Maryland of all places, was going to stop by this afternoon, Saturday, with a dealer's check. Since then he has had 4 phones calls inquiring about the car.
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2014 Tesla Model S 85 (75,000 mi)
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  #9  
Old 11-17-2001, 03:39 PM
turbodiesel
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Congrats on your new car.. maybe you can make it to the next diesel get together with it.
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  #10  
Old 11-17-2001, 05:12 PM
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Yeah, I already thought about that. Gee, what a dilemma, which Mercedes do I drive today. LOL. For those here who are married, know what tap dancing I had to do to get "permission" from the "boss" to buy a third car, that we don't really need. I guess what helped was that this car isn't another "project car".
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  #11  
Old 11-17-2001, 06:16 PM
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The older you get the faster that "tap dancing" will be .
My wife does not have a clue how much $$$ is tied up in old diesel MB around this house but then again, whenever she wants furniture, jewelry, etc.. I just tell her to go get it - which she does. You have to think of innovative sayings like "This one will be the oldest boys car in four years when is old enough to drive" and things like that.
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  #12  
Old 11-17-2001, 06:17 PM
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I will give you 3600.oo for it
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  #13  
Old 11-18-2001, 01:37 AM
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Jim, I already used that one about it going to the oldest. My daughter is 10 and figured, based on the mileage and condition of the car, that it will be around when she learns to drive.
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2004 Volvo V70 2.5T (205,000 mi)
2014 Tesla Model S 85 (75,000 mi)
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  #14  
Old 11-19-2001, 12:26 AM
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Rick~ go for this car.
I looked 5-6mos for a 1982-85 300TD but couldnt find one in my price range, which was low anyways, i settled on my 300D-T which is silver, but always wanted a wagon. That rear suspension creates a sweet ride down the expressway. They all ride nice though. I see that you got it, good for you. These are rare and wonderful cars, i envy you getting one so cheap!
Happy dieseling
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  #15  
Old 11-19-2001, 12:33 AM
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Congrats Rick, another TD owner, we're rare.

Glad to hear you got the car, great ploy to get the wife to agree on the purchase. I'll have to try that one on my third mb purchase as the oldest boy is thirteen now. Although my TD is an '80 model and non-turbo, it's downfall I suppose I'd like to find anoth in the mid-80's that is in fine condition. I can't complain about the body or interior in mine. It's spent all it's life in Calif. and the no rust condition proves that. Just wish it had the turbo in it though. I feel like a truck driver sometimes anticipating the next hill and stepping on the pedal to keep things running smoothly. All in all it hasn't really cost me anything money wise to maintain that a little troubleshooting hasn't solved and a $20 bill here and there hasn't solved. I haven't got the third seat either, but I think it would be a nice option as there are even fewer of those driving around. Although I paid half of what you did for yours at 156,000 on my clock new, I'd pay the extra for the turbo option. Have fun, and start looking for a car for your daughter as I doubt you'll be able to turn her loose with your new toy.


Charles
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