We have 15 years of archives. Links older than a year may have been updated to point to similar cars available to bid on eBay.
Update 1/24/2018 – nearly a year and a half later, this car is still for sale at a slightly reduced price of $6,999 – getting closer to our valuation.
Another week, another diesel Mercedes-Benz. This one has a little more rarity thanks to fewer features than what we normally see. Manual transmission, manual windows, non-turbo diesel engine, cloth seat inserts but what you do get is European lights and bumpers finished over the wonderfully period-correct Thistle Green. So if you are looking for a bare-bones W123 diesel with a little bit of European flare, then this 300D north of Philadelphia might fit the bill.
A W126 diesel provides all the comfort, style and luxury of the legendary S-class while giving your wallet less of a pounding at the pump. There were three diesel engines available for this platform: one five cylinder unit (a 3.0 liter offered in the 300SD between 1980 and 1985) and two six cylinder units (a 3.0 liter offered in the 300SDL between 1986 and 1987, and a 3.5 liter offered in the 350SD/SDL between 1990 and 1991). These later engines were afflicted by a number of reliability problems, quite out of character for a Mercedes diesel product. So if you really want an oil-burning W126, the safest bet is to stick with one of the earlier cars, like this one. Not only does this ’82 300SD have the more reliable five cylinder engine, it’s presented in a particularly fetching and suitably classy shade of green.
The sight of a W123 wagon on the road never fails to bring a smile to my face. It’s a testament to the durability of these cars that they can still be seen today doing exactly what their designers intended forty years ago, chugging along faithfully and reliably, hauling stuff around. We’ve seen nice, well-kept examples fetch between $10K and $20k over the last few years. As a result, a lot of the nicer ones have been snapped up by rich hipsters (it’s not for nothing that many of them have ended up in Brooklyn). That’s a shame because these were always the workhorses of the Mercedes lineup and the hike in their value has put them out of the reach of those who just want a cheap, no-frills hauler.
That makes this particular car, suggested to us by our reader Don, all the more refreshing. While the mileage is low, the car is certainly not mint, and the somewhat tired but perfectly usable condition will help to keep the price of this one on the affordable side.
I’ve dreamt about the Mercedes-Benz O309D as an RV before, and today’s underwent a full conversion from a postal van to camper van in the ’70s. It has some distinct pros and cons: On the plus side, it looks amazing in baby blue, is way cooler than a normal RV, and has the venerable Benz OM617 diesel found in the 300D, so parts are aplenty. On the other hand, it’s almost 50 years old with a 40 year-old RV conversion – meaning there’s plenty of work ahead – and the non-turbo diesel inline-5 has to use its ~80hp to haul a massive van up to its 50mph common-sense limit. My calculus adds it up to an overall positive because it runs, has a ton of potential, and putting in a fraction of what some people spend on RVs would make this a killer home away from home.
I’ve posted a couple of these unique wagons in the past both of them were 1977 450SEL versions. You can see them here and here.…