China Blue Estate: 1983 Mercedes 300TD

While Mercedes’ W123 cars are best known for their ability to tolerate excessive miles and years of neglect, it’s always nice to find one that’s been lovingly preserved. This 1983 model is a desirable longroof model, up for offer on behalf of the first and only owner. This 1983 300TD wagon here on eBay is said to wear original paint and come with an extensive maintenance portfolio, and is listed for $6,200 or best offer. 

Like all W123s, the interior has worn incredibly well. This is in spite of the fact there’s over 186,000 miles on the clock. The navy interior pairs nicely with the wagon’s China Blue exterior, and carpets and dash show no obvious signs of damage or wear. When W123s are maintained like this one apparently was, it’s even more mind-blowing how good the interior looks with close to 200K on the clock.

This 300TD, as nice as it is, is not without its flaws. It has rust issues in a few places, including the rear tailgate and below the rear windshield. It also has rust in a typical Mercedes spot, which is by the jack points on the rockers. There’s some rust in the doors, too. This is hardly impossible rust to fix, though, and each spot looks completely manageable in nature. This W123 is in Florida under consignment, but I wonder where it spent most of its life to attract this much rust.

Under the hood, the venerable five-cylinder diesel engine is just getting broken in. The seller has thrown some money at this W123 over the years, most recently in the form of a $2,000 brake job that included new lines. While I don’t suspect this is the best example available, the owner’s lengthy history with the car makes it one of a likely small group of W123s that have remained with the same owner since new.

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  1. Al

    This in my opinion deserves a comment after 5 hours of it’s posting.
    When I purchased an AMC Sportabout, a similar 300TD was about $900 more and at the time I could not swing it. I was also concerned about maintenance of a foreign car, so I kind of hedged away from it.
    My family (parents) had experienced an Austin-Healy 3000 Mk.III, a Jaguar 420G, a Peugeot, and a Bentley S3. At times they had difficulty getting service let alone parts. They often had North American cars, where servicing and parts were easy to come by.
    In retrospect, I wish I had bought the 300TD and would probably still be driving it.
    I seem to have a a panache for keeping older cars. Currently, I have a 1970, bought new, a 1981, 2000 and a 2013. The 2013 is a Mercedes, the others are not.
    That being said I really like this TD300!

  2. Chinga-Trailer

    Looking at the engine photo you can see it’s got the very rare option of blue color matching masking tape holding on the cap for the windshield washer fluid – very rare in North America!

  3. James Sterrey

    What a beauty!

  4. Gay Car Nut

    I agree. I believe that the less neglect a car goes through, the better. However many original miles (or even kilometres) there are on the odometer doesn’t matter. What matters is how well it’s been maintained throughout the life of ownership. I’m not against patina as long as it’s superficial, that no rust holes can be seen.

  5. 433jeff

    I had a veg wagon an 85 and the doors shut with authority, the car was a living breathing think, needing minor tweaks, but it was super safe and cheap to run on veg, I ended up moving on to a 603 87 diesel. The 85 wpuld spin 3100 or 3200 rpm at 65, so when you forgot and looked down you were spinning 4000 rpm at 70-75, the 603 spun i think 2100 at 70 mph, i think the only GM that comes close to the sound the doors make on thr 85 wagon is the 72 lemans sport post car, close bit no cigar. The 85 would have been perfect if i stayed in town , it had the working sls and i didnt want to change the rear

  6. Danh

    Great color on any w123! Too bad this one has rust issues. Sorry,those rims don’t work on a wagon. A good painter can repair the rusted areas and re-shoot up to the moulding with good results. Can’t say it’s origonal paint after that ,though.

  7. chad

    damn, another one!
    I’ll B in that town in Feb….

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