W123 did any have 3 speed auto gearbox? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-25-2009, 02:40 AM Thread Starter
BenzWorld Junior Member
Date registered: May 2009
Posts: 11
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
(Thread Starter)
Post W123 did any have 3 speed auto gearbox?


I have just inherited my late grandfathers mercedes w123 230e in ivory paintwork. He was a private chauffer so every time the car was used it was washed and covered in a garage for the last 24 years.

The car has covered 93000 miles and is in immaculate condition.

I have been using it regularly on motorways. Should the car have a 3 speed auto gearbox?

when at 80mph the engine is running at 4000 rpm, is this correct or should it change up into another gear which it is not doing?

everything else on the car is faultless, im just wondering if the gearbox has developed a problem where it did not move for nearly 2 years.


simonleach is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-25-2009, 05:28 AM
BenzWorld Member
Date registered: Jan 2009
Vehicle: 1977 230, 1990 300E 2.6
Location: Eastern Panhandle, WV
Posts: 243
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have an early U.S. spec W123 230, carburetor version - production date 10/76. AFAIK, all were 4 speed automatics. If you are not familiar with these transmissions, they start out in 2nd gear so you will only feel 2 shifts. It is possible to get the car to start in 1st by (while at a stop) moving the selector lever all the way down into low then back to drive. Unless you really put your foot into it, the trans won't stay in 1st very long.

As far as the RPMs, the gearing on these cars with just the 4 cyl. engine is such that they really turn over some RPMs at speed. The number you quoted seems right to me. I don't have a tach in my car so I can't give you comparable readings but have seen the spec for RPMs at 60 mph - about 3,200. Mine sounds like it needs another gear - 5th - at cruising speed.

Sounds like you have a really cherry car. Mine is in the same condition but with a few more miles. Yours should perform better with fuel injection and the 230E does have a few more HP than my 230 carb version - about 20 more HP, IIRC. In the U.S., the 230s were not very common and only offered for 2 yrs. Most 123s in the U.S. were either 4 or 5 cyl.diesel or 6 cyl. gas. This makes my car a little more rare here. Mine was owned by a close friend and in all the years I have known this car I have only seen a few of them on the roads. I believe the 230E was more common in other parts of the world.

Last edited by oliverb; 05-25-2009 at 05:31 AM.
oliverb is offline  
post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-25-2009, 10:05 AM Thread Starter
BenzWorld Junior Member
Date registered: May 2009
Posts: 11
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
(Thread Starter)
thank you very much. Sounds like its fine then.

simonleach is offline  
post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-26-2009, 09:29 AM
BenzWorld Elite
Date registered: May 2005
Vehicle: '07 GL320CDI
Location: Albuquerque
Posts: 5,070
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
These 4-speeds normally start from a stop in 2 unless you really floor it or select manually.

The old Switzerland pull a house trailer up a hill from a stop test.

Kent Christensen
'07 GL320CDI
lkchris is offline  
post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-26-2009, 11:06 AM
BenzWorld Elite
Kajtek1's Avatar
Date registered: Dec 2005
Vehicle: W211 E320 Bluetec R129 SL500 - $1300 car ........ Ford F350 6l
Location: CA Bay Area
Posts: 31,511
Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Quoted: 1058 Post(s)
Side topic about color. I used to own W123 in off white. The official name of color was "Bamboo"
The color description nobody could understand.
Few pictures here would be priceless.
Kajtek1 is offline  
post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-26-2009, 03:54 PM Thread Starter
BenzWorld Junior Member
Date registered: May 2009
Posts: 11
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
(Thread Starter)
will take some pictures tomorrow and post them for you.

simonleach is offline  
Sponsored Links

  Mercedes-Benz Forum > General Mercedes-Benz Forums > General Mercedes-Benz

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mercedes-Benz Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


  • Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
    Thread Tools
    Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
    Email this Page Email this Page
    Display Modes
    Linear Mode Linear Mode

    Similar Threads
    Topic Author Forum Replies Last Post
    7 speed auto gearbox ATF change keyhole C209/A209 CLK-Class 74 05-27-2014 01:19 PM
    W123 manual gearbox oil? 5 speed 100haggis W123 E,CE,D,CD,TD,TE Class 14 04-07-2009 06:39 AM
    did w123 had automactic 5 speed gearbox????? harpreet928 W123 E,CE,D,CD,TD,TE Class 20 01-25-2009 01:39 AM
    350sl/450 Auto Gearbox Question 3 Speed? Peter Seow R/C107 SL/SLC Class 10 08-19-2006 10:45 PM
    5 speed auto gearbox in a ce Guest (MBNZ) W124 E,CE,D,TD Class 2 09-06-2001 05:48 AM

    Posting Rules  
    You may post new threads
    You may post replies
    You may not post attachments
    You may not edit your posts

    BB code is On
    Smilies are On
    [IMG] code is On
    HTML code is Off
    Trackbacks are On
    Pingbacks are On
    Refbacks are On


    Title goes here

    video goes here
    description goes here. Read Full Story
    For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome