A variant under the Mercedes-Benz W123 series, the 240D was an executive car that was in production from 1977 to 1983. Equipped with a highly powerful diesel engine, it even outpaced the Mercedes Benz 220D. The 240D model symbolized Mercedes Benz’s successful foray into the hi-tech, diesel-based, luxury sedan segment. Today, it is known as a highly durable and powerful sedan that could outperform many of its competitors.
1976: The W123 series
The history of the Mercedes Benz 240D can be traced back to the introduction of the W123 series in 1976. Unlike its predecessor, the W123 featured bigger dimensions and a larger wheelbase. Standard features included large, rectangular headlights and a powerful diesel engine. In the same year, a coupe was introduced that featured a shorter wheelbase. Because of this model’s sudden popularity, the demand for W123s led to models being sold in the black market.
1977: The 240D variant introduced to the US market
Although the W123’s 240D version was already sold in other countries in 1976, it was only officially introduced in the US market in 1977. At that time, the W123 was sold in 240D, 300D, and 250D variants. The 240D version stood out from the rest because it was a perfect combination of power, luxury, and dependability. Equipped with a four-cylinder, 2.4-L engine, its top speed was more than 160 km per hour, although it only produced 65 hp. Over the years, the engine was upgraded to increase horsepower to 72 hp. Despite such a powerful engine however, the 240D was a fuel-efficient vehicle.
Its stylish interior featured upholstery covered in MB-Tex, a material that can be compared to Kevlar because of its durability. The simple yet stylish dashboard conveyed a sense of practicality and functionality, reflecting the clean and refined German aesthetics. The stylish yet practical interior was partnered with thick, metal sheet panels and highly durable components.
1982: 240D facelifts
In 1982, the 240D received minor upgrades. The list included rectangular headlights and power steering. All models except the 300TD were offered with an optional manual transmission system.
1983: Last model year
The last model year for the 240D was 1983, although the production of the W123 series was discontinued in 1985. As a highly successful model, the 240D was one of the most popular versions. At the end of its production, a total of 455,000 units were built.
Today, the Mercedes Benz 240D is a highly popular vehicle among second-hand buyers looking for a reliable, diesel vehicle equipped with a luxurious interior. In various countries such as those in the Arab region, the 240D models and other cars from the W123 series are currently used as taxi cabs because of their easy-to-maintain engine, easy-to-find parts, and reliability.