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  #1  
Old 08-23-2000, 10:17 PM
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Location: Shelton, WA
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The car I just bought is a 1980 300 SD. I understand that the model is a W 116? What do all these different numbers and letters stand for? I would like to understand the system of numbers and letters, so I may speak somewhat intelligently about the car.

Thanks again,

Doug

------------------
1980 Mercedes 300 SD
1994 Ford F-350 7.3 liter turbo diesel
1993 Chevy Suburban
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  #2  
Old 08-23-2000, 10:53 PM
SW SW is offline
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The wXXX is a chassis/body style designation. Your car is a w116, the next generation of SD's and S-class cars (1981-1991?)were designated w126. I think the next S class was the w140? I don't think the numbers have any meaning.

------------------
'82 300D Turbo 216k miles
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  #3  
Old 08-23-2000, 10:59 PM
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For your car:

300 means a 3 liter engine, S means a luxury model, and D is diesel engine

The W116 is the basic body style, which I think was shared with the 380SE in your vintage. This meant 3.8 liter engine, S for luxury, and E for "einspritzen" or fuel-injected.

Do not take this too far, as the designations lose their logic between years and keeping it straight is an art unto itself. Sometimes, S was for Sport and L was for Light or Luxury. Then there was the 250C which had a 2.8 liter engine and a C for Coupe.

If you get the Adsit catalog, you will find a good description of body and engine designations.

Chuck
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  #4  
Old 08-23-2000, 11:37 PM
mattsuzie
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Although you were converting to liters which is fine, the numbers on a Benz specifically refer to the amount of volume displacement of the cylinders in your engine in cubic centimeters, i.e., my 420 SEL has 420 cm3, your 300 SD has 300 cm3. The American system is in cubic inches, i.e., my Olds has a 455 cubic inch engine, which is around 7.5 L, which would be 750 cm3. If my Olds were a Benz, it would be a 750 SL. From cm3 to liters, simply divide by 100 as detailed in the previous posts.

Here's a quick lesson on what the letters mean:

C (coupe or the smallest model)
T station wagon
D Diesel
SL convertible
SLC like SL, but hardtop - no convert
SEL largest body style gas engine
SDL largest body style - diesel engine
D Diesel mid or small body style
SD like SDL , but a little shorter in length
SE like SEL ,but a little shorter as well
E midsize


The newer models have the letter come first, i.e., S500, don't know why. In any case, the best thing to do is to go to a dealership and look at the brochures. I am sure I left out a bunch, but the basic are there.


------------------
'89 420 SEL
'90 300 SEL
'68 Olds 88 Convertible
'84 300 SD (sold it)
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  #5  
Old 08-24-2000, 12:48 AM
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Doug,

Here it goes:

W - "wagen" - german for vehicle
116 - I believe this is the internal project designation code MBZ used for that series. Same for all models, 107, 126, 140,124, etc were all internal control numbers.

300 - not in cubic centimeters but in deciliters. Total displacement 3000cc or 3 liters.
S - Luxury series, I believe this designation started around 1958 or 1959 with the first 220S and the term "S class" was introduced in the mid 1980's as an advertisement slogan.
D - Diesel
In the case for example of the 450SL, etc...

R107:

R - roadster
107 - internal control number
SL - "sport leicht" - light sport
450 - displacement 4.5 liters
Hope clarifications help.
Regards,
Joe Brasileiro
1980 450SEL
1987 Jaguar XJ6
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  #6  
Old 08-24-2000, 01:25 AM
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And to take it one step further:
SEL
S - Luxury
E - Fuel injected
L - Long Wheel Base

Also, I believe that the W108/109's (109's should be 300 SEL 6.3 and 6.9's)were the last of the hand built Benz's, any higher chasis numbers utilized some degree of automation.

Before long you'll be recognizing and classifying Benz's by chasis numbers - Ooh, look at that clean 108 (refernce to Suzanne), etc.

------------------
Mike Tangas
73 280 SEL 4.5
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  #7  
Old 08-24-2000, 01:38 AM
mattsuzie
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Your correction is 1/2 right jbrasile, but thanks for getting me thinkin, it's late on the east coast.

You are right that 300 is not cubic centimeters, but unfortunatly, your assessment that the 300, or 3 liters, stands for "deciliters". That is incorrect as well.

To set the records straight, THE NUMBER STANDS FOR CENTILITERS!!! THEREFORE, A 300 SD HAS A DISPLACEMENT OF 300 centiliters!
The units are centi not deci. If it was deci, he would be driving a 30 SD, he he

You were correct that 1L = 1,000 cm3 however.

Whatever the number, enjoy the ride!

------------------
'89 420 SEL
'90 300 SEL
'68 Olds 88 Convertible
'84 300 SD (sold it)
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  #8  
Old 08-24-2000, 01:45 AM
mattsuzie
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Please enlighten me on when they stopped making these by hand. I thought that the 300 SEL were 126's only, never a 109. Please enlighten if possible.

------------------
'89 420 SEL
'90 300 SEL
'68 Olds 88 Convertible
'84 300 SD (sold it)
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  #9  
Old 08-24-2000, 06:22 PM
WmHarlow
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http://fly.hiwaay.net/~gbf/mbmodels.html

This website has good descriptions of the models and years produced.

Just FYI.

------------------
William
76 240D (W115) - 550K miles
78 300D (W123) - 200K+ miles
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  #10  
Old 08-24-2000, 08:59 PM
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Thank you for the correction.It has been a while since I had to deal with units of measure for volume. I suppose another easy way to figure out the displacement would be to just ignore the last digit in the model number. So: 300 = 3.0, 450=4.5, 280=2.8 etc..
Regards,
Joe Brasileiro
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  #11  
Old 08-24-2000, 09:05 PM
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Mike,

The 109 was the 300se, 300sel, 300sel 3.5, 300sel 4.5 and 300sel 6.3. The basic difference between a 108 and 109 is the air suspension. 108 has conventional coils, 109 air suspension.
The 6.9 is a 116 not a 109.
As far as the hand built issue, I believe the 116 was the last of the hand built cars. When the 126 dubuted in europe in early 1980 a new facility in Siengefelden was used and it had a great deal of automation. If I am wrong someone correct me please.
Regards,
Joe Brasileiro
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  #12  
Old 08-24-2000, 09:05 PM
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Location: Toronto, CANADA
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Check out
http://home.hiwaay.net/~gbf/mbmodels.htm

It has a compherhensive listing of model numbers (ie. W126) and engine numbers.




------------------
Jason Priest
1986 420SEL
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  #13  
Old 08-24-2000, 09:51 PM
mattsuzie
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Thanks guys for these cool links. At least Mercedes numbering sys makes sense. Look at BMW "731i" - that ain't a 7.3 L I'll tell yah that!
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  #14  
Old 08-24-2000, 11:46 PM
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Thanks for all the replies. I think it helped!?

Doug

------------------
1980 Mercedes 300 SD
1994 Ford F-350 7.3 liter turbo diesel
1993 Chevy Suburban
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  #15  
Old 08-25-2000, 09:02 AM
LarryBible
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Actually here is what the latest Benz letter designations indicate:

C = Compact
E = Executive
S = SPENSIVE

<g>

Larry
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