The 300TD is an executive car that belongs to Mercedes Benz’s W123 line. This vehicle was manufactured and sold to the market from 1979 to 1985. Here’s a quick look at the changes and transformations of the Mercedes Benz 300TD, including its roots in the W123 line through the years.
The W123 is born
Preceded by the W115, the W123 line was first released by Mercedes Benz in 1976. “W123” serves as the brand’s internal chassis-designation for its line of executive cars produced from 1976 to 1985. Four-door vehicles under the W123 line were very similar to their predecessors, but they had minor differences in their wheelbases and overall sizes. There were also several deviations in terms of styling, but W123 models noticeably displayed a lot of similarities with W114 and W115 models. In general, W123 cars had round headlights, which came in varying sizes. This, however, was later on standardized all throughout the range. They were also powered by inline four (2.0 L to 2.4 L), five (3.0 L), or six (2.5 L to 2.8 L) engines and they were also made available with the following transmission systems: 3-speed automatic, 4-speed 4G TRONIC automatic, 4-speed manual, and 5-speed manual.
The naming system of Mercedes Benz vehicles are quite easy to follow because the different letters affixed after the model numbers stand for the engine size, engine type, or chassis type of a particular car. For instance, C stands for coupe, L stands for long-wheelbase, T stands for touring (also known as estate or station wagons), D for diesel, and E for Einspritzung (fuel injection engines). As a whole, W123 cars were made available in four body types—a 4-door saloon, a 2-door coupe, a 5-door estate, and a 4-door limousine. They were all assembled in different parts of West Germany—Sindelfingen, Stuttgart, and Bremen and they were all successful during their time.
The 300TD model
The Mercedes Benz 300TD was introduced to the market in September 1979 as the brand’s first turbo diesel vehicle. For its powertrain, it was only made available with an automatic transmission and it was furnished with a 3.0 L 5-clylinder turbocharged diesel engine, which could churn out up to 125 hp. In North America, it was available with a saloon and coupe variant while to the rest of the world, the model was only sold with the T body style. In 1982, all existing W123 models, except for the 300TD, received a minor makeover. They were equipped with rectangular headlights, power steering, and they were all made available with an optional 5-speed manual transmission. Production and sales of the 300TD model lasted until 1985 while the entire W123 line lasted until the following year. The line was replaced by the W124 shortly after.