(This is a repeat post as I was unable to retrieve the replies previously)
I am looking to buy 114/115 MB circa 1968-1976, but do not know which model?
I previously owned a '76 230.4 for about six months. I was extremely happy
with it and are sorry that I ever sold it (it was my varsity transport and I
though that I "upgraded" when I bought a '90 VW. (VW also gave about 200 000
trouble-free km's but without the luxury and wonderful back seat ;-)
I would like to know which models were the most reliable and are not too
expensive to keep in a good condition nowadays. Also: which (if any) came
factory fitted with a/c and which can be succesfully fitted with a/c. (I
live in SA, and ultimately want to use the car as daily transport).
I know of a '68 220 in excellent condition, but are afraid that it may be a
bit underpowered since it is an automatic.
Some general tips about the 114/115's are also most welcome
It definitely depends on your taste.
Generally speaking the diesels are more reliable
and especially with my 230 6-cylinder the Zenit
35/40 INAT carburettor was a problem, worn out
and very difficult to synchronize, thirsty it
What models were available for South Africa?
I live in Germany and so there was the full line
available - I once had a 1972 model.
Here also rust is an important issue - that should
be very different in South Africa.
The South African manufactured and assembled line up of 114 & 115
220 and 220D, the majority being manual
230.4 and 240D automatic and manual
230, 230.6, 280, 280E with the 230 in manual and automatic
The 230.6, 280 and 280E models were mostly automatics
The launch models 230 were 6 cylinders with the 230.6 change to
differentiate between the 230.4 and 230.6 which formed the run-out models
prior to the introduction of the W123 series.
Rust is not a problem, however I have 2 concerns about diesels: 1. Can they
be fitted with aircon (it gets hot here) and 2. Apparently the diesel in SA
in the 70's and 80's were of inferior quality.
IMHO a diesel is more trouble free.
The downside is the lack of power
and the noise - and YES, I know
what I speak of, have driven all
the W123 diesels which have basically
the same engines as the W115.
Slowest W123 I drove was the one with
the 55 PS engine from the W115 200D,
top speed 127 km/h and 33.2 secs from
0-62.1 mph, auto trans - that IS slow!
As already written I had some problems
with my worn-out W114 230 6-cylinder
and the 35/40 carburettor.
So personally I would tend to another
model, either single carburettor or
I do not know how much you`ll drive in
a year and how much fuel costs in SA,
also I do not know about differences
in car taxes and insurance premiums.
So a calculation of the cost of different
models would be useful to see which do
fit into your budget.
With the diesel cars the 240D is the best
(except the 300D aka 240D 3.0), it has
65 PS and in that range every single PS
IS useful - the 200D and 220D are a bit
slower than the 240D but does not consume
With the gasoline cars I would - from the
models you listed above - take either the
230 4-banger or the 280E.
Personally I prefer auto trans, but that
of course may differ with you, I live in
a big city and driving auto trans is much
more relaxing there.
I definitely would prefer a car with power
steering - it is no real fun to have a non
power-steering car in city driving and
especially parking (been there, done that).
No matter what model you decide for, I would
buy the best-condition model you can afford/
fits into your budget (assumed of course the
price wanted by the seller is a correct
To give you a clue here is a GERMAN market
price for a 230 (4 cyl) in Euro:
Condition 1: 6.700 (as good as new - maybe to be
found at Pebble Beach...)
Condition 2: 4.400 (only slightly used - what most
people refer to as _very good_)
Condition 3: 2.600 (used - normal wear of age - what
most people refer to as _good_)
Condition 4: 1.100 (used-up, work needed)
Condition 5: 400 (has to be restored, not driveable)
Note that here in Germany these prices can be
higher, that mainly depends on the body colour
and the options.
Kind regards from Germany
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