1 Nov 1976
Although it featured an all-new body and interior, the W123 was a very close relative to the W114/5 model.
The 80kW/186Nm 230 single-cam four-cylinder engine was the base unit available in Australia, available in four-speed automatic or special-order four-speed manual gearbox models.
From ’81 to ’85 the 230 gained fuel injection and a 92kW/194Nm output to become the 230E model seen by so many television viewers in the early years of ‘Sale of the Century.’The W123 was available in two diesel variants. The carryover 48kW/137Nm engine was again slotted into the 240D while a 59kW/172Nm five-cylinder 300D was launched.
From June ’80 both were revamped to produce more power – with the 240D offering 53kW while the 300D and new 300TD – the first Mercedes wagon ever sold here – both boasted 65kW. All used a four-speed automatic gearbox.
A 92kW/194Nm 2.3-litre four-cylinder seven-seater 230TE wagon was also introduced, in late 1983.
In the six-cylinder W123s there was the 125kW/233Nm 2.8-litre 280E sedan and 280CE coupe, with the outputs rising to 136kW/238Nm from June ‘80’s revamp. A 280TE wagon also joined the range.
In the end almost 2.7 million W123 and related models were produced by the time production ceased in 1985.