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Aside from being the last of the W124 production run, this 95 year Mercedes diesel was not one of the fastest as it is not turbo charged and produced less hp and torque than most all 124 and later 210 MBs.
However, the 6 cylinder delivers 134 hp with 155 ft-lb of torque, and the fastest of the 124's, 87 300DT turbo, put out only marginally higher hp, 148, and this was a very fast car by any standard.
My guess is that the 95 E300D, with well over 30+ mpg, will run for ever, due mainly that there is no turbo.
When the day comes that I must part with my 87 300DT, the 95 E300D will be the replacement. I cannot consider the newer 210's because of premature rust corrosion problem factors that are just now beginning to become published and with many people now protesting to the NTSB.
In my honest opinion, the 95 124's are the last of some of the best MB's from Germany. You cant go wrong with this car and they ride and drive awsome!
In case you didn't know, the 300E's are damn fast, faster than an IROC-Z and several other high performance cars, as has been documented!
It would be very hard pressed to compare almost any diesel with most gassers, the only one exception is MB's newest diesel, just became available in Europe, not sure if it's available here in the US yet! They say it's a real screamer!
My 300DT can burn rubber from a dead start, if I wanted! 0 to 60 in under 10 seconds! Not a draggster, but not a slouch either, and it gets 30+ mpg.
I've had a 95 300D for 10 1/2 years, and it has 158,000 miles. It's been a great car to drive and to own. Cost of ownership has been pretty low, and I've always taken it to the dealership for every scheduled maintenance. It averages 26-28 mpg in the city (depends upon how hard the AC runs), and can get up to 31 mpg on the highway driving 75 mph. It handles very well, and is balanced nicely. Recently replaced the bushings in the front end, and it has a tighter feel to it. About 3 years ago, replaced the engine mounts (they have rubber bushings), and it greatly reduced the felt vibration of the engine. The car's not quick, but is geared low enough to get up to highway speeds like a four cylinder gas powered car does. Am now considering buying the 2006 E300 CDI (wanted to have them make it for a year before buying it), and will be selling my car next year. I hope the new one is as much fun to drive as the 95! If I don't buy the 2006, will keep the 95, and drive it for another 10 years...