Mercedes Benz C123 Coupé Development


Mercedes-Benz first introduced the W123 four-door versions in January, 1976. While technically quite similar to their predecessors, the new models grew somewhat in terms of wheelbase and exterior dimensions and were given a more modern body that retained strong stylistical links with the /8 while at the same time incorporating more modern features. Initially, all models except 280/280E featured quad unequal-size round headlights and the latter models big, square single units. All /8 engines were carried over, with the 3 liter 5-cylinder diesel model being renamed from 240D 3.0 to a more logical 300D (as it had already been called before in North American markets). Only new engine was the 250`s 2525 cc inline-six (Type M123, a short-stroke version of the 2.8 liter six Type M110) that replaced the old 2496 cc Type M114 six. In the spring of 1976, a new Coupé version was introduced, again on a shorter wheelbase than the saloon (2710 mm (106.7 in) instead of 2795 mm (110 in)). This W123C/CE was available only as a 230C (later 230CE) and as a 280C/CE in most markets; in North America there were additional 300CD versions with naturally aspirated, later turbocharged 3 liter diesel engines. From August, 1977, long wheelbase versions (3425 mm (134.8 in)) joined the line-up. These were available as 7/8 seater saloons with works bodies or as mere chassis with complete front body clip, the latter serving as the base for ambulance and hearse bodies by external suppliers like Binz or <b>...</b>


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