Baja Benz S-Class: 1982 Mercedes-Benz 300SD W126

There is an old saying; if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. That’s sort of the way I feel about the Baja-everything movement. Sure, it started with Beetles back in the day, but then they started putting big wheels and lift kits on Firebirds, BMW Z3s, Miatas, Crown Victorias…where does it end? Let the apocalypse commence, I’ll be ready. Maybe with a W126 S-class? Find this 1982 Mercedes-Benz 300SD W126 offered for $4000 in Highland, CA via craigslist. Tip from Rock On!

From the seller:

1982 mercedes benz 300sd
condition: fair
cylinders: 5 cylinders
drive: rwd
fuel: diesel
odometer: 250000
odometer broken
paint color: silver
size: full-size
title status: clean
transmission: automatic
type: sedan
Motor runs just fine, gets a little hot when going uphill for a prolonged time, but stays steady around 90 Degrees C under normal driving conditions. 5cyl Turbo Diesel has around 250k miles (odo stopped at 200k). Turbo has nearly no play on turbine wheel (very good thing) and the motor has ample power considering its 40 years old.
-Engine mounts are bad (the car vibrates pretty violently when not moving)
-Coolant systems builds up pressure (signs of a worn head gasket)
-Motor must be turned off manually (ignition won’t turn it off)
-Transmission slips when shifting from 2nd to 3rd (vacuum problem)
-No A/C or Radio
-Passenger side has mildly large indentations

If you haven’t noticed, its on 33s. I offroad it quite often, but the back tires still scrape on the fenders and inner wheel well if the gas tank is full and you hit a bump hard enough. I was in the process of making a Gambler 500 type vehicle out of it, but I am now moving to Texas and I no longer have the time to put into it. The hoodstack in the photo of the motor has since been removed, it has a downpipe going straight under the car now (sounds like a mini Cummins lol)

-Power windows (and sunroof!!!) work
-New thermostat
-New glow plugs
-Valves adjusted 3 weeks ago
-Oil changed 2 months ago
-Interior is in good shape for its age (besides the center dash which is torn apart; In the middle of adding a rocker panel for lights)
-New battery
-Just fun to drive

I have quite a few original Mercedes tools and parts that will come with the car if I’m not haggled with. That’ll include four 7inch Light pods and ten 4inch light squares I was planning on installing (all brand new still in box) and the panel to wire them up to, I just don’t have the wire yet.

I have the pink in hand. Test drive with cash in hand, and must be serious about buying. No joy rides
I won’t sell it to someone who won’t use it, she’s a fun vehicle and has lots left in her, if someone has the time to fix the mounts and deal with its odd quirks.


See a better way to baja a cool old Benz?