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  #1  
Old 04-16-2004, 06:52 AM
Randall Kress
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How Does Your 300D Take Rough Roads?

Well, after an evening out in the NYC, driving through the upper west side, I couldn't help but relish how well my W123 takes rough roads... I'm curious as to other's rough road going with their W123s... Are rough roads a detriment to these fine cars? (Any more than other cars???)
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  #2  
Old 04-16-2004, 07:01 AM
LarryBible
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The 123 car IMHO is not a great handling car from a spirited driving perspective, but if there is another car that handles rough roads any better I have never driven one.

You can go over railroad tracks, speed bumps, potholes or whatever and hardly even know that they exist.

Other MB's are almost as good, but for some reason the 123 seems to me to be King in this category.

Have a great day,
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  #3  
Old 04-16-2004, 07:59 AM
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My '83 300DT is amazing when it comes to this, I can fly down any dirt road at any speed and the ride is smooth, RR tracks what RR tracks... For comparison I have recently had the suspension overhauled on my wife's 97 Volvo 960 wagon. Dieter does the rough stuff much better.
I remember how bad those roads can get up there Iam sure that is the real test, driving in and around NYC...
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  #4  
Old 04-16-2004, 08:51 AM
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I have been driving on rough dirt roads all my life and think the W123 has got to be the best handling/driving for the types of conditions that dirt roads present. Like I said in another post the 123 is the best riding truck I have ever driven. Too bad it does not have a pickup truck bed.
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  #5  
Old 04-16-2004, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by engatwork
I have been driving on rough dirt roads all my life and think the W123 has got to be the best handling/driving for the types of conditions that dirt roads present. Like I said in another post the 123 is the best riding truck I have ever driven. Too bad it does not have a pickup truck bed.
Surprised nobody has sliced up a 300TD yet.. It's closer to a truck than a 300D....
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Old 04-16-2004, 09:39 AM
LarryBible
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Actually, I saw a picture somewhere in the past of a TD that had been made into a pickup, it looked pretty good too.

That said, don't think that you can haul anything heavy in something like that for long runs or long periods.

Have a great day,
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  #7  
Old 04-16-2004, 12:44 PM
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I live about 1-1/2 miles from the nearest paved road. We have been getting a LOT of of development lately (fastest growing county in the country), so our dirt road is getting torn up pretty good by all the construction traffic. My 1985 300D handles the rough roads exceptionally well.

Quote:
Originally posted by LarryBible
...but if there is another car that handles rough roads any better I have never driven one...
As much as I like my W123, my wife's 1997 Subaru Impreza is a beast on dirt. It has a nice aftermarket suspension kit made by Prodrive, the same outfit that builds the WRC factory Imprezas. There are a few stretches of dirt road near me with good sight distances and no driveways. You can put that car into a turn, juice it, and it just slides through pretty as you please. Just like on that WRX commerical with Lance Armstrong.
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Old 04-17-2004, 01:17 AM
123c
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I've taken the 300CD down some rough Forest Service roads before, and didn't have a problem...
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  #9  
Old 04-17-2004, 02:12 AM
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How do they do on smooth roads? I really enjoy the roads here.... Anyway, I've rode in smoother cars but all in all I'm quite pleased with the way it goes over big bumps. From December to April I drove my talon which has a horrible ride, but after getting used to that going back to the MB was quite a treat. My 84 went over them a little different but I think the rear shocks were getting tired or something, the 83 handles very well over bumps no matter how big or small.
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  #10  
Old 04-17-2004, 02:50 AM
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Got to jump in on this one. We live five miles off the pavement on a gravel road in the costal Mts. of Oregon. In the summer the unpaved roads here turn to washboard from the logging trucks.

My 81 SD with Bilstiens handle the rough roads pretty good my 81 SD with KYB shocks is not as good my 86 Euro 500SE is down right scary and my 74 240 D manual is by far the best car I have ever driven on on bad roads.I take the 240 on some jeep roads during hunting season that you have to see to belive. It is very controllable on gravel and can be tossed around much better than the other three.

The 500 SE taught me an early lesson if you hung the tail out even slightly on gravel upon correcting it it would oversteer dramatically and dive for the left dicth, I think part of the problem with it is that it hangs in much longer and at higher speed than the other cars.On paved curvy roads it handles quiet a bit better than the SD's.These roads really tear up lesser cars, I rebuilt the front ends on all but the 240 when I got them............

William Rogers..........
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  #11  
Old 04-17-2004, 07:12 AM
LarryBible
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You know I didn't think of this when I wrote my first post, but probably more amazing about how well the 123 handles rough roads is the fact that at 500,000 miles it STILL handled rough roads and felt exactly the same.

That was after 500,000 miles without ever changing so much as a tie rod end. The ENTIRE front end had never had a repair of any kind beyond shock replacement!

A little after 500,000 miles I got a parts car that was relatively low mileage. I bought it for the engine, but I put both of them in the air and swapped the entire front suspensions. The ball joints were a little loose, but most everything else was amazingly tight.

I wonder how tight that Subaru will be at a half million miles.

Have a great day,
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  #12  
Old 04-17-2004, 02:23 PM
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Since I am crazy...I like to "rally" my 240D. There are a few gravel roads by my house that I like to go and drive fast on. I must say...going 60 on gravel in that car is so smooth...the only problem is that it isn't very predictable when it comes to drifting, I have found that the 123's like to go their own way, and once put into a drift, don't necessarily like to come back
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  #13  
Old 04-17-2004, 02:40 PM
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my subaru is at 250k with no suspension parts replaced, and it handles 100% better than the benzes on the dirt roads that i drive. you might feel the potholes more in the subaru, but i know that it was built to take the abuse (rally chassis) unlike the benzes..

but that said i dont think it could make it to 500k without some replacement of parts.
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  #14  
Old 04-17-2004, 02:46 PM
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Mine takes on speed humps quite nicely. There are these speed humps on one street that I drive down regularly that I don't even need to slow down gowing over them. The car has the just the right wheelbase combined with a very forgiving suspension system that make going over those speed humps really easy.
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  #15  
Old 04-17-2004, 05:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by LarryBible


I wonder how tight that Subaru will be at a half million miles.

Have a great day,
My non-offroaded lady owned 300D's suspension was worn out at 200K. And the boots on the OEM lower ball joints that don't have 50K on them are split already. Lot's of things effect front end wear.

My A1 VW is plenty tight at half million miles. And get's 40mpg.
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