This 1983 Mercedes-Benz 300TDT was ordered new in Germany by B. Schwarzer - an emigrating German-Canadian citizen - as an Option Code 820 “Toursiten-Fahrzeuge” or “Tourist Vehicle” for duty-free import to Canada. It was purchased by the long-term owner Milton R. on September 11, 1984 with delivery miles only for $36,500 ($90k today) and remained in his possession for 35 years until being acquired by the current owner in Fall 2019. Finished in Petrol Green Metallic (877) over Mushroom (255) leather interior, power is provided by a 3.0-liter turbodiesel inline-five mated to a four-speed automatic transmission. Equipment includes heated front seats, a mechanical sunroof, chrome roof rails, OEM Mercedes chrome crossbars, factory European headlamps, factory NAS bumpers, Bosch yellow foglamps, Rial mesh wheels, Zebrano horn pad & shift knob, a rear cargo area sisal Cocomat, power windows, cruise control, air conditioning, heated rear glass, and the original Becker Mexico head unit. Service in 2021 includes new valve cover gaskets, new tie rod ends, new Continental tires and an SLS to rear spring suspension conversion. The car is accompanied by seven sequential, annualized binders containing approximately 1,200 pages of sleeved paper records from 1984-2021 totaling over $80k in service and repairs. Records show that the engine was rebuilt twice in 1999 & 2013 and the transmission was rebuilt twice in 2000 & 2007 and virtually every mechanical component has been replaced or rebuilt on this car at least once. This remarkable S123 shows 537,700 Km (333k miles) and is now offered by the seller with a recent Carfax report, two keys, seven binders of records, the original 1984 newspaper clipping advertising the car for sale, the original handwritten bill of sale, two separate stamped service bookets w/37 stamped entries, original hang tags, original break-in instruction tag from MB, OEM sales brochures, OEM Tourist Vehicle manual, manufacturer’s literature, two Mercedes-Benz “High Mileage” award certificates, and a clean Delaware title.
The car is finished in Petrol Green Metallic (877) from the factory and has previously been the subject of a long form article on The MB Market. Features include chrome-accented NAS bumpers, European Headlamps, roof rails, OEM crossbars, bosch yellow fog lights, a power-retractable antenna, and anodized aluminum trim. The front end underwent a repaint in its original Petrol Green Metallic for $4,250 following an accident in 2004 according to the records. The front end appears factory straight with clean, level and even hood and fender lines throughout. Receipts showing that the chrome brightwork was completely re-plated in 2002 is viewable in the records library. The rubber and chrome on the NAS bumpers are in excellent condition and close-ups are viewable in the galleries below.
This example features an extremely rare specification from the factory that is exists on no other 300TDT: The car is equipped with US-Spec bumpers (option code 491), but has factory Euro Headlights and a Km/H instrument cluster specific to Canadian destination vehicles (Option Code 463) as a Touristen-fahrzeuge (Option Code 820/Tourist Vehicle). A copy of the datacard is provided showing these specific option codes.
Factory 14″ steel wheels were replaced under long-term ownership with 16” Rial mesh wheels which are wrapped in Continental ContiPro Sport Contact tires measuring 205/55 all around; the tires were replaced in 2021 and show 2021 date codes. The car features power-assisted disc brakes front and rear and the front tie rod ends were replaced in 2021. This 300TDT was originally equipped with a hydraulic self-leveling rear suspension from the factory and that has been replaced with a rear spring conversion by the seller in 2021. An invoice for the above items is viewable in the gallery.
The cabin features seats and door panels trimmed in rare Mushroom (255) leather upholstery, while Zebrano wood trim accents the dashboard, center stack, and center console. Equipment includes power windows, a manually-operated sunroof, cruise control, automatic climate control, and the original Becker Mexico cassette stereo. The zebrano wood trim shows remarkably well with no major cracks or delamination visible and close up photos are viewable in the gallery. The A/C has been converted to R134a under previous ownership and works well.
A four-spoke steering wheel frames a 200-kmh speedometer, a clock, and a combination gauge. The six-digit mechanical odometer shows approximately 537k Km (333k miles), 1,000 of which were added by the seller since 2019. The cruise control is reportedly inoperable.
The original 3.0-liter OM617 turbodiesel inline-five was rebuilt twice under prior ownership in 1999 and 2013 including new valves, rings, bearings, pistons and sleeves according to the records. The fuel injection system was rebuilt in 2002 and, as documented in the records, virtually every major mechanical component on this vehicle has been repaired, rebuilt or replaced at least once over the past 39 years.
The Carfax report shows that the car was repurchased from the prior owner’s insurance company in 2004 following an accident when values for 300TDTs were not strong. The vehicle has since been driven over 140K kilometers without issue and extensive service to the car both pre-and post-accident has been exhaustively documented. The accident report, insurance documents and the rest of the car’s history is thoroughly documented in the car's voluminous records.
A small, abbreviated selection of records from each of the seven records binders is viewable in the linked .pdf files below. Click the link above the appropriate image for the binder volume to view the .pdf files.
A video interview with original owner, Milton, is viewable below.
An exterior and interior walkaround video, driving video and cold start video are also viewable below.
Two separate galleries of photos are provided below.
One gallery features current photos of the vehicle and one features photos that were taken shortly after the vehicle's initial acquisition by the seller in 2019.
This car is a rare treasure: It is a verifiable, known quantity that hides no secrets in its endless archives of astonishing historical notes & records. There is no doubting that this car has been truly loved and returned the favor in spades. With over $80k spent keeping this amazing and unique 300TDT classic not only roadworthy but road-capable, the tales that this long-loved longroof could tell can't be quantified; even if the 1,200 pages of records and the high-five-figure investment can be. To be clear: This is not a car purchase. This is more like gaining a new friend....A new family member, even. Whomever becomes the next caretaker of this amazingly adored wagon will have an anthropomorphized pal in the little green buddy who bears the wonderfully weathered "Milton" moniker. There's little doubt that Milton will ever stop chugging…and looking sharp while doing so. This is a rare opportunity but, at the risk of sounding dramatic, it is perhaps a once in a lifetime opportunity: because we know it took the original Mr. Milton R. a lifetime to build the story of this car for us all to enjoy.
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