When gas prices spiked to more than $5/gallon in 2006 and 2007, cars like this 1985 Mercedes-Benz 300CDT were suddenly red hot. With durable and thrifty diesel engines, handsome good looks, and a bit of collector appeal, diesel Mercedes-Benz automobiles can be great collector cars or awesome daily drivers. And given the way this handsome coupe looks and drives, you might just want to drive it every chance you get.
Wearing a period-appropriate AMG body kit and a handsome gold paint job, this 300CDT is straight out of the '80s. But that's a good thing, because these cars are virtually indestructible and are arguably the last Mercedes-Benzes built by engineers rather than the marketing department. Styling is conservative, but the body kit makes it look sporting and the coupe is vastly more desirable than the more common sedans and wagons (and rarer, to boot!). That's original paint and showcases the quality workmanship that the three-pointed star represents, because it still shines up nicely and looks great. It's not perfect, of course, but it's quite presentable and the car still has that rock solid feel for which Mercedes-Benzes are famous. Someone has obviously loved this car all its life and it hasn't spent any time in the snow or salt, so the bodywork should last as long as the engine... which can be many, many years yet. These are VERY hard to kill.
Inside it's typical Mercedes-Benz luxury with supportive bucket seats that are still in great shape with leather upholstery that's as tough as iron yet all day comfortable. The giant steering wheel and simple instruments with big, white letters are trademarks that were part of the Mercedes mystique for decades and it all works properly. The wood paneling is real wood and the carpets are plush to help control noise from the diesel up front. It includes a decent-sounding AM/FM/cassette stereo and features like cold factory A/C, power windows, power locks, cruise control, and a sunroof overhead. The doors close with a heavy THUNK and going down the road the car feels indestructible, so even with its modest performance, it still represents the very top-of-the-line. The back seat is comfortable enough for a pair of adults and the spacious trunk will carry just about anything you need on a long road trip. There's also an amplifier for the stereo and a CD changer.
The 3.0 liter inline-5 diesel engine is legendary around the world for its reliability. As long as there's fuel and air, it'll run. It looks complicated, but it's not, and with a little experience, you should be able to keep it in top condition for many tens of thousands of miles. It shows about 177,000 miles, but in Mercedes-Benz diesel terms, that's barely broken-in, so don't let the numbers scare you. And you'll be shocked by the fuel economy on this one, turning long highway drives into an endurance test between the car and your bladder. Ride quality is German firm, brakes are effective, and it cruises serenely at high speeds without any real effort at all. There's a bit of the usual diesel clatter from under the hood, but it quiets down at speed and the automatic transmission shifts smoothly. Underneath, you can see there's no evidence of this car ever being rusty or wrecked and it sits on 80s cool 5-spoke wheels and 225/50/16 performance radials.
Nicely documented with the factory manuals and lots of receipts, this is an unusual find that's affordable, practical, stylish, and sooner or later it will be very much in demand. Call today!