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Old 06-11-2002, 10:51 AM
Registered User
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 48
avg year repair costs for a 300D series 1980s

Just wondering about these. I love them but am a little worried about the yearly repair costs on these older vehicles. Any input would be appreciated. thanks.....

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Old 06-11-2002, 11:57 AM
Posts: n/a
It depends on the car!

I've had my 1976 240D (W115) for many years. Some years maint. runs only cost for oil, filters, fuel additives, etc..... general maint. stuff. Some years are different, like with any car you will have major expenses every now and then. Last year I dropped about $1200 above normal, but the year before was only $100.

These cars are well engineered, but do require regular upkeep.

You could buy a well maintained Benz and sink another $5K on repairs next year. On the other hand, you could drive it for ten years without anything but oil changes, valve adjustments, and tires! Remember, it may be a Benz, but it is still a used car.

This is a judgement you will have to make yourself. Most of the guys (and gals) on this forum do their own repairs and enjoy doing it... maybe that's why we have older cars.... hmmmm...

Whatever your decision, we are here to help you out.....
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Old 06-11-2002, 11:58 AM
Jim B+
Posts: n/a
Can be really very modest...

These are possibly the last cars ever built designed to be "maintained." There is a regular schedule of required maintainance, and that combined with 3,000 mile oil changes (diesels) can really keep the wolf away from the door.

Only really big expense in eight years with an '83 240D has been a rebuilt transmission ($1500). No computers to go up, no "timing belts" to be changed at 60k...just rock solid reliability for hundreds of thousands of miles. These cars were the last produced under the old "luxury" car philosophy where a high initial price was amortized over an amazing potential service life by the simple rituals of maintenance.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:56 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Southampton, NJ
Posts: 126
Repair costs so low I bought another one!

When I purchased my first '85 300D I had the same fears/concerns. I have since been so impressed with the "maintainability" of the car that I purchased an older one with more miles on it than the first, and with no major concerns.

I figure with the average lease/purchase monthly cost of a car to be about $300 for anything decent whatever I do not spend on maintenance I am "saving". I would estimate my annual repair costs to my 300D at around $500, including fluid changes. I do most of my own work and do not sweat the little things so these cars make sense to me.

Hope that helps.
'85 300DT--215,000 miles
'82 300DT--255,000 miles
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Old 06-11-2002, 04:03 PM
Posts: n/a
Average annual maintenance cost will depend on several things:

1) if you do most of the work yourself, much less

2) if you want to keep the car in nearly perfect condition, much more

3) how is your luck?

I am spending quite a bit even though I do a significant portion of the work myself....but my standard is high as I want the car to drive, ride, and look almost new.

If you don't want perfection, can do some work yourself, and have a bit of luck, a grand a year should be the ballpark. If you are more like me, think two to three thousand a year (on average). Still, even at three k, thats similar to buying a relatively inexpensive new car and in my state I save at least $500 a year on property taxes (cars over 15 years old pay only $15 a year in tax here!).

'85 300CD @ 150k miles.
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Old 06-11-2002, 04:21 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 3,473
If you see my signature you will notice my car. I got it with 450,000 miles on it. With that many miles you can expect a lot of suspension parts are out. I replaced ball joints, tie rods, etc, all the steering components except the steering box which is worn out. That cost me about 1000.

I replaced the radiator, hoses, and belts, that was about 400.

I got new wheels $500. Got more new wheels 1k, now I need tires $600.

I got new half axles from napa (dont get mercedes parts from any place but mercedes dealers, places like this ( because the quality sucks. But I did those and replaced a wheel hub because with the new wheels I got a short lug nut and it stripped out on of the holes. That was 600 including labor.

I got the valves adjusted, injection pump timing adjusted, a new compressor, drier, etc for the AC, new push buttons, etc. That was 1100.

And since then, which was last summer when I did all that, the only money I have spent on my car is for EURO lights $300. Then 2 Oil changes, 1 tranny change, diff change, coolant change, flushed the brake fluid, got some other calipers because mine were leaking, and thats about it really.

I think if you keep them maintained they will go forever. Sometimes rubber parts wear out so you have to deal with those when you come to them. It may seem like a lot from what I have done to my car, but my car has a lot of miles on it, so a car with much less you wouldnt have to do what I have done. Just keep the oil changed, thats the most important and keep the fuel filters changed because bad deisel screws stuff up.

Id say that yearly you could look to spend $200. But if something catastropic goes wrong its usually about 1k dollars.

Id say when you are looking for a car, the most important thing would be making sure they have records of maintence, make sure that the car wasn't beaten. Check to see if the oil is low, if its low, its probably always low. Ask if they check their oil, etc.

I think that 300Ds are very reliable, and they are safe. My friend bought a brand new car, and it breaks all the time. My car hardly ever brakes, and when it does, if its not cheap, you have to deal with it.


Current Stable:
1994 S500 v140, 210k miles, white with grey.

Former Mercedes in the Stable:
1983 300CD Turbo diesel 515k mi sold (rumor has it, that it has 750k miles on it now)
1984 300CD Turbo Diesel 150 k mi sold
1982 300D Turbo Diesel 225 sold
1987 300D Turbo Diesel 255k mi sold
1988 300 CE AMG Hammer 15k mi sold
1986 "300E" Amg Hammer 88k mi sold (it was really a 200, not even an E (124.020)
1992 500E 156k mi sold
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