I am new to this very intersting and educating forum.
I would like to ask a few questions about Diesel Gelaendewagens.
I am thinking of getting a 4door LWB Diesel with Automatic transmission as my everyday driver.
Once a week I need to tow a trailer with about 2000 kg total weight.
Can a GD 350 handle this without a major problem?
What are the shortcomings of GD 350s??
What kind of engine life can I expect if the vehicle was always properly maintained?
Should I consider any other LWB Diesel?
It has to be an automatic, though.
The engine is from the construction excellent, but MB made 2 mistakes and it was checked too late, so lots of these engines run into problems.
1. Wrong cooling fluid
At that time MB thought, their fluid is ok, but it was not good enough at the highest temperatures. It cooked a bit. And not enough, it blocked -based on a chemical reaction- the cooler in front of the car, so the temperature went high very fast.
Based on that there was the 2. Problem
the cylinder head, specially the cooling for the 5th and 6th cylinder.
It cracked from too much heat and pressure.
( The weight from the car specially the LWB, is a real killer for Diesels, too and no speed limit at the highway was definetly the ticket for a damage )
The technicians noticed that and they designed a completely new cylinder head and of course a new cooling fluid.
The new head is available. I knew from these problems and decided to do the mods. I changed to the new head, the new fluid and replaced the whole cooling system. My engine was checked completely, it was in great condition and everything was new adjusted. With these mods the - my - car is absolutely excellent, but only because I did that.
Super reliable, absolutely no temperature problems. Power now is excellent for a Diesel, but I have a SWB, this is a big difference here.
After all is done now some month ago and I used the car for a difficult mountain trip, I can say,
it was worth it. All is perfect now.
( Now you know, what to do, when a problem is coming.)
Unfortunately all former MB Diesels are not powerful enough for your needs, in my opinion. The G 350 can handle the 200kg trailer. Another choice is to go for the G300TD with 177 HP, that's a good one, maybe MB's best.
Otherwise I would go for a Toyota with their 4,2 Diesel. This engine is the best Diesel ever made.