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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Yesterday, in my neighborhood , I saw a Mercedes 220 diesel drive by, turn into a driveway and came back past the house. It was about a 1970 model, with a little old elderly lady (lol...my age) driving it. It had two different color, ill fitting doors that kinda ruined the appearance, but it clattered along as if to say it didn't care what I thought of it's appearance. It was a stick shift, and she was doing a masterful job at jamming those gears and getting it moving. They were as simple as an automobile could be, AM/FM radio probably the only option. The windows were down and it was hot outside, so I doubt it had air.

When I was in Germany in the 70s and 80s these 220 and 240Ds were the "checker cabs" of the country and plenty of them could be seen amongst the potato patches, their trunks being loaded to the brim with dirt covered potatoes...they were everywhere. Made a lot of noise and a lot of smoke too, no turbo, but would run all day long on the autobahn at full throttle...less than 90 mph. I always admired those cars. They were built like anvils and this one will probably be chugging and clattering along long after the crusher eats my Cruze!


I wonder if anyone will ever admire the Chevy Cruze in the way I do these old Mercedes oil burners?:eusa_clap:
 

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No because vehicles are all throw away items now. Back then they had to last and they had to work to make their owners a living. Most cruze's I see have one person and no way would you see them hauling anything


Sent from the sexy electrician
 

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Back in the day I worked with someone who'd had a 240D. After more than a decade it had reached the end of its life. I remember how he told me of going to the M-B dealer to buy a replacement but that none were available - and what was had appreciated in price beyond his buying power.

He told me that the M-B salesperson recommended that he buy a Toyota Camry as a modern day equivalent to the build quality of his 240D. And so he went to the Toyota dealer and bought a 1983 Camry. It was only the first or second Camry that I'd ever seen.

It's been more than 30 years ago now. Time marches on.
 
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Cool story. My first old Benz was a 220D that I bought back in '93 for $100 not running. I wasn't much of a mechanic, but I managed to get it running after installing a used injector pump, a starter and spraying starting fluid. Man, did that thing smoke when it was running. One drive around the parking lot and you couldn't see the parking lot any more for all the smoke. in retrospect, it probably only needed glow plugs and a fuel bleeding.
 
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As much as I hope I'm wrong, I'm not sure that the Cruze is ever going to be in the same class as the old MB's. I have the same kind of admiration for old construction equipment, before everything had to be 400hp+. The old Caterpillar D9's are one of my favorites.
 

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I had a 1985 Mercedes 300 D from 1988 to 2005. The chassis, 5 cylinder, cast iron TD engine and drivetrain were faultless but it had a complicated leak prone vacuum system that was a problem. It was too much for the dopey mechanics here to fix properly, even at the dealer. The car was overbuilt with with quality parts like forged long travel suspension, forged magnesium alloy wheels, horsehair spring suspension seats, double timing chains, and heavy duty engine internals. Most parts that are now plastic were all metal. You could drive it through snow, dirt roads, offroad, potholes, and over curbs like a truck. Best ride quality of any car I've owned. EPA rated at 22 city, 25 hwy. MY CTD smokes less and gets double the hwy mileage but I miss the old MB when the roads get rough. I sold it after a head on collision with a pickup bent the frame (no injury with zero airbags). There is a like new 300D similar to mine on eBay with 22k miles, old MB fans should check the photos showing the quality components.
 

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My ex's mother had a 240D. Garaged, mint condition metallic brown.

She had escaped from East Germany in the '60s. Seemed an appropriate vehicle for someone who had escaped to decadent West Germany. Economical and reliable but classy. (no Trabi or Wartburg for her)

It was the slowest vehicle I have ever driven. It was slower than a 3 cylinder Daihatsu Charade. It was slower than a QMB139 50cc scooter to 30 mph. It could not bark it's tires on polished concrete.
Air Conditioning was inadequate. I do not think that the engineers that designed it had Southern USA climate in mind.
It was durable. It is quite possibly the most solid unibody car I have ever driven. Vault like. You could hear the quality when you closed the doors with a solid "thunk".
 

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horsehair spring suspension seats,
I had all but forgotten about the boingy springy seats.

They were vinyl but a high grade very thick and soft vinyl. Not anything like the vinyl in Datsuns, Toyotas and Hondas of the time(which all vaguely smelled of brackish water after awhile)
 

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I've heard from an unreliable source that all Benz's have a lifetime roadside assistance, no matter age or mileage. Any truth to that?
 

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I've heard from an unreliable source that all Benz's have a lifetime roadside assistance, no matter age or mileage. Any truth to that?
They changed that. I think it's still true, but the car must have been serviced at a dealer in the past year. Something like that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
They are definitely awesome cars. The guy on Chasing Classic Cars on Velocity bought one with only 22k miles on it for probably very cheap...made me jealous. I would love to have another.
 

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I think our Cruzes will be like the '80s diesel cars are now. The will be very scarce and a curiosity. I am talking cars like the Ford Tempo diesel or Chevy Chevette diesel and other cars in that class. They are all but extinct now.
 
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