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  #1  
Old 07-25-2002, 02:14 PM
Coming back from burnout
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: in the Pacific Northwest
Posts: 2,274
Up to what year Mercedes Diesel can Amateur hope to maintain?

I have had luck and success rebuilding and maintaining my W123 83 240D and 85 300D, but I am looking ahead to see whats on the Horizon.

(1) Up to what year Mercedes Diesel can I hope to be able to service, overhaul(including engine) before chip/didgital technology makes it impossible.

(2) When the W123 Series supply runs out (ala 240D/300D) can anyone name an equally reliable Mercedes Diesel in the 87-90 model year that I can hope to claim as a Project car?

(3) My credentials http://mywebpages.comcast.net/rtc9/BENZ.html

(4) Can anyone recommend a specific car to work on and look for?

(5) I dont make much, but I dont want to have to drive a Dodge Neon or Escort. I dont mean this as disrespect, they are probably great cars, its just that my mercedes reflects me.
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  #2  
Old 07-25-2002, 05:58 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Tucson, Arizona, USA
Posts: 180
If no one else answers, my opinion is the W126 (ending M.Y.1991) diesels are good, so long as you stay away from the bored-out 350SDL engine. They do not have so much more electronics and the parts are only a little more expensive. However, as you know, you simply can not beat the price/reliablity/servicibility combo of the W123 you are already in. To recommend a specific car, I would look to the last year of the reliable engine: 1987 300SDL longbody turbodiesel. Cheers, Andrew Seidel.

Edit: check out:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=1846273863
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86 560SEC
85 500SEC Lorinser
83 300D Turbo
75 240D

Last edited by 5banger; 07-25-2002 at 06:05 PM.
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  #3  
Old 07-25-2002, 07:31 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Fairfax County, Virginia
Posts: 856
Great question!

I would approach it backwards ... the best driving, most powerful feeling (best torque at low RPM) was the W126 with the 3.5L destructo diesel engine. It is a great car ... same mechanicals as most other 126s, last couple of years (mine is a 1991).

Backwards because I would look for a 1991 350 SDL with a blown engine! Buy it cheap, rebuild since it looks like you are capable, and have a cheap, ultra reliable car since the engine components you replace appear to have been the only issues on the whole car!
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George Stephenson
1991 350 SDL (200K and she ain't bent, yet)
former 2002 E320 4Matic Wagon - good car
former 1985 300 CD - great car
former 1981 300 TD - good car
former 1972 280 SEL - not so good car
a couple of those diesel Rabbits ...40-45 mpg
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  #4  
Old 07-25-2002, 08:54 PM
Registered Diesel Burner
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 2,911
My plan is to buy a 1993 300D in 2013, if the EPA still allows diesel at that time.




I think these are user maintainable.

Ken300D
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  #5  
Old 07-26-2002, 09:17 AM
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Location: Fairfax County, Virginia
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Don't think there were 300Ds in 1993 ... there is a 300SD which had the same engine as the last W126s ... the 3.5L that had mucho problems.

W140s (starting in 1992) were far more trouble prone than the W126s ... LOTS more electronic stuff that was very very expensive to repair ... do a search under W140 and see what you think.
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George Stephenson
1991 350 SDL (200K and she ain't bent, yet)
former 2002 E320 4Matic Wagon - good car
former 1985 300 CD - great car
former 1981 300 TD - good car
former 1972 280 SEL - not so good car
a couple of those diesel Rabbits ...40-45 mpg
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  #6  
Old 07-26-2002, 09:59 AM
Registered Diesel Burner
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 2,911
If I'm not mistaken, there was a 1990-1993 series of 300D that had a 2.5-liter 5-cylinder turbodiesel. OM602 engine.

Ken300D
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  #7  
Old 07-26-2002, 04:59 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Columbus Ohio
Posts: 709
Go for the 90-93 300D 2.5 turbo...most of those cars were pretty stripped(MB Tex seats,no headlight washers..etc) as compared to 300/400E's of the same time...but compared to the 123 you will notice a world of difference in driveability and acceleration and fuel mileage...and get a few more(in my opinion) needed frills...ABS,AIRbag and an updated interior...and drives like a dream....drove mine 130K miles and never put anything in it except a vacuum pump....no the 140 I own now is another story...and btw don't even consider a 140 unless you consider yourself a very skilled tech..lol

Warren
1992 300SD 144K
Columbus Ohio
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  #8  
Old 07-26-2002, 06:02 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Texas
Posts: 55
i have 87 300DT 3.0 6cy(124) and 87 300D & 87 300E the best out of all of them is 87 300TD it is fast quite solid , it has 187k miles still going strong ,if you can find one clean go for it you will have a good car for another 5-10 years.
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124Bill
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  #9  
Old 07-26-2002, 06:16 PM
blackmercedes's Avatar
Just a guy
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: St. Albert, Alberta, Canada
Posts: 3,492
DON'T pick a W210 diesel.
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John Shellenberg
1998 C230 "Black Betty" 240K

http://img31.exs.cx/img31/4050/tophat6.gif
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  #10  
Old 07-26-2002, 07:34 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Fairfax County, Virginia
Posts: 856
Ken,

Aaccckkk ... you are right. Sorry about that.

George
(am in Fairfax County)
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George Stephenson
1991 350 SDL (200K and she ain't bent, yet)
former 2002 E320 4Matic Wagon - good car
former 1985 300 CD - great car
former 1981 300 TD - good car
former 1972 280 SEL - not so good car
a couple of those diesel Rabbits ...40-45 mpg
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  #11  
Old 10-02-2002, 10:06 PM
carl
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Posts: n/a
Be careful with the 1987 300D. If they overheat you might lose the head gasket and the head. These motors are not that common and you just don't run out and find a used head. They are not inexpensive. Stick with a 123 iron motor for reliability.

Carl
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  #12  
Old 10-02-2002, 11:41 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Omaha, NE
Posts: 962
The same advice applies to the '86-87300SDL. If the head goes south, need to buy a new and improved version to the tune of ~$2000. Also need to watch out for trap oxidizers in these. Not necessarily deal breakers, more something to be aware of. Otherwise absolutely super cars!
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Steve
'93 400E
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  #13  
Old 10-03-2002, 12:09 AM
carl
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Unless Mercedes has changed its policy the dealer should be able to remove your trap oxidizer and install another little things; looks like crummy tin foil.

But, when you drive away it will feel like you picked up 20 bhp and it is all legal! Elimination of the trap oxidizer reduces back pressure materially. A week after I bought my 87 300D (used with 40k) the trap imploded and took the turbo with it. I was getting on the freeway and stepped on it and the car kind of went "pfft" and a bunch of black smoke came out the back. I limped to the dealer barely able to hold 50mph. It was repaired under warranty the same day. The oxidizer removal s/b done free of charge.

Carl
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