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Limo Face Off: Mercedes 300D Vs Ford Granada

Limo Face Off

So, you own a classic car. What does it do? Does it go on Sunday drives, finding solace on country lanes? Does it take up space in the garage, consuming time and funds with abandon? The answer may be yes to both of these questions, but we hold onto our classics because they still bring us great joy when not inflicting pain on our bank accounts. However, what if it was possible to both own a classic and have it generate income, even if just to pay for the occasional suspension refresh or leaky water pump? It might be possible with a classic limo! Check out this 1984 Mercedes-Benz 300D here on craigslist for $8,500 and this 1986 Ford Granada at Epping Motor Company in the UK for $4,500 today.

Mercedes And Ford Limos

Our memories in the U.S. of the Ford Granada might be a bit different than those of our readers overseas. However, there are some ironies that make this is a fitting comparison: Ford intended for the U.S.-market Granada to offer buyers a luxurious compact in the wake of the ’73 energy crisis, and effectively compete with cars like the Mercedes 200-series lineup! The European market Granada was an entirely different car with unique styling and mechanical components, but was still intended to appeal to an executive audience. The limo conversion by Coleman Milne took it one step further, and this “Dorchester” edition is 68 cm longer than the standard Granada. With only 83,000 miles, she may have a few weddings and proms left in her yet!

1984 Mercedes-Benz 300D Limo

The Mercedes limos have always intrigued me since many of them were factory built and not an aftermarket conversion. The window designs mimic that of other cars known to be factory models, so there’s a good chance this example is, too. These factory stretches were built on the LWB (3,425 mm or nearly 135 inches) W123 chassis and retained popular engines like the 5-cylinder diesel that this car is equipped with. On this particular listing, I had to look up what “new RTV and Marchamo” stood for – and then I noticed it was in Costa Rica! Basically, it translates to emissions and registration paperwork. So for either of these classics, you’ll need to book a flight to see them in person – but why not hire a chauffeur while you’re there and explore the new local in style?

1986 Ford Granada Limo

So, this Face Off is a bit more of a fantasy than usual, but I do like the idea of buying a classic that allows others to share in the joys of ownership. Now, that may mean you pick up some scuffs on the door panels and the seats incur a tear every now and again (or a carpet stain, from spilled champagne), but for a car that can make you some money in return, this seems like a manageable pain. Have any of you ever owned or ridden in a classic limo? More importantly, do you have the room to park either one of these in your driveway? Let us know in the comments below.


  1. john e.

    Hands down its the Benz all the way.

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  2. Jason

    That stretched Granada is horrid. I would prefer a more manageable Benz, but it’s the winner here for sure.

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  3. Jasper

    The limo conversion really ruined the clean, classy lines and proportions on the Granada.

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  4. John Shepherd

    I notice the Granada has many characteristics of the Mk4 Cortina and the Australian XD Falcon , And would I be right in thinking that the Granada runs a V6 motor ?

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    • M.E

      The Granada range was offered with V-4 (early ones), I-4, and V6 gas engines, and I-4 diesels.

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  5. Rich

    The Granny for me, mainly because these, along with the hearses, saloons and estates are still getting banger raced at a terrifying rate here. Plus I really have a problem with Mercs, I’d never own one.

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  6. hoby

    Ford all day Mercedes a dime a dozen.

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  7. Jeff Lavery Staff

    I think I’m a fan of the Merc, as well – but the Granada in Europe was far more stylish than the one we had stateside. Either way, a cheap and fun way to enjoy classic motoring. Plus the Mercedes has the added cache of being a factory-built conversion.

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    • M.E

      I’ll go as far as saying that the European Granada was a car worth having :)

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  8. richard blank

    CCC just bought her in COSTA RICA!
    Major restorations are in the plans for Daisy the Limo. The new paint job is just the start…


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    • Jay

      Get rid of that tacky grille on that black limo…totally off-putting and makes it looks cheap!

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  9. Richard Blank

    Real InterContinental at Multiplaza Mall COSTA RICA LIMOUSINE.

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