In April 1978 M-B built a diesel powered high speed demonstration "race"
car to show that diesels could achieve more than taxi cab speeds. In
fact this rig reached 338 kph (about 210 mph). It was powered by a
modified 5 cylinder intercooled turbocharged diesel - coincidently, not
unlike the production motors in the then new to the market '78 300SDs.
The C-111 is now in the Mercedes-Benz museum in Stuttgart if you happen
to be traveling.
The interesting part is that the C-111 motor developed 230 HP and 295 ft
lbs of torque at 3,600 rpm. That's about 77 HP/Liter from a tweaked
The 1977 - 1985 617.95X turbodiesel production engine that we know makes
120 HP (110 HP 1977 - '79) at 4,600 rpm and 170 ft lbs of torque at
2,400 rpm (designed for 55 mph driving). That's about 40 HP/Liter.
This fall some of you will be able to buy a '07 V-6 Turbodiesel M-B that
makes about 235 HP at 3,600 - 3,800 rpm and 370 ft lbs torque at 1,600 -
2,800 rpm. That's 78 HP/Liter - exceeding the 29 year old high speed
This V-6 diesel has more horse power per liter and vastly greater torque
than contemporary gas engines!
That's real technological progress.
No wonder that half the new cars sold in Europe are diesels.
I can hardly wait until these are sold in California.