Which classic Benz should I pick? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-25-2010, 11:14 PM Thread Starter
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Which classic Benz should I pick?

Here is my criteria

It needs to be cheap 1000-2000 ish
I Would love a manual transmission
I need to like the body style ( I like the 60s models the best so far but I could live with late 70s/early 80s)
I needs to be fast enough to drive on the freeway
I need to be able to find parts easily and cheaply(hopefully)

I'm not the worlds best mechanic but I have more time than money these days so I plan on doing as much work as I can if not all of it. My thinking is that the older the car the simpler the fixes should be, I don't want anything with a complicated electrical/computer set up.

Should I go diesel or gas? Biodiesel? I'm in Portland Oregon should I should be able to find Bio but I"m not really sure what the pros and cons are.

I've got my eye on a 65 220s, it is a manual, costs 1200, runs and looks decent enough but could use some more work. Think this might be a good car for me?

other models that interest me
66 200d biodiesel
late 70-early 80s 300d
59 180d - would this be too slow for the freeway (75mph)?

Any advice would be great! I'm getting pretty excited trying to find the right car.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-25-2010, 11:39 PM
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123 body.

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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-26-2010, 02:56 AM
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Any diesel below the 300D or 300 Turbo D is slow. The 1966 200D and 1959 180D cannot comfortably be driven at 75 mph, if you ever get there. A 240D from 1978 onwards might be acceptable, but it is still slow.

My advice would be a 123 model, 300D or 300 turbodiesel. Coupe parts can be more expensive and difficult to find, best to stay away from those if cost is an issue. Same applies for wagons.

Some older cars gas have difficult carburettors or fuel pumps. Also parts availibility might be difficult for cars before the 114/115 model.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-26-2010, 08:00 AM
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If you have what I call a "gut love" for a particular model (114, 116, 123, 126, or other), find one of those, even if you have to search for a few months. Don't buy what you feel you have to "settle" for, unless dollars leave you no choice.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-26-2010, 05:27 PM
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govert is right with respect to comfortable cruising speeds, the pre-turbo diesels struggle with speed all around.

However, I have a manual 74' 240D and i manage to drive 4 lane highways that are treated like the autobahn. I just sink into the right lane and get there when I get there.

To give you an idea, comfortable cruising speed for the 240D is around 65 mph, up in the 70 range things sound like they are moving a little too fast. As far as I know, the 240D is about as fast as it gets without moving up to the 300's..... but its difficult to find and of those 300 turbodiesels as a manual so you might have to make a compromise somewhere if you don't want to spend too much.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-28-2010, 03:29 PM
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Keep in mind a cheap Mercedes can reveal costly to restore and maintain. Don't go too far in time.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-28-2010, 04:08 PM
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If you like the '65 220S go for it. You can later go for a lower ratio rear end for more comfortable cruising.

The other nice model you could look at is a jet is well sorted it's a very nice car for the money.

With MBs of the 60s and 70s the rule is to buy the best you can afford. Buying a cheaper one will cost you more in the end to bring it to the same level.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-28-2010, 04:22 PM
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the saying goes

there is nothing more expensive than a cheap mercedes.

there are some great deals out there though
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-28-2010, 04:36 PM
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w108 or w123 (might not find a manual tranny)
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-28-2010, 07:32 PM
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Find a W114 or W115. They have a distinctive look, you can still get parts pretty cheaply and they handle and brake like a modern car.

With best regards


Check out the W114, W115 /8 enthusiast forum http://www.stroke8.org

My 280SL restoration
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