I drove this car 296,000miles in 10 years before my kid reminded me of why I bought it in the first place. Kid took a curve too fast and the car ended up on the roof, motor running, wheels turning. I never expected that this would really happen my desire to have a safe "old" car for my kid was my motivation in buying this car when my kid was ten years away from having a driver's license. What kind of person would complain about their kid wrecking a 15 year old car with nearly 300k miles and walking away without a scratch. I found my newest car on CL. Yes, it is another 1995 MB E300D (only 200k miles!). If lightning strikes twice, I want the same outcome as the first strike.
This is the second 300D I've had I work out of my vehicle 12-14 hours per day 5-6 days per week. I wanted comfort, reliability & economy. I got it in spades. This one I've had 2 years. I've put over 100,000 miles on it and it has delivered continually. You just have to regular maint. I take care of it and it takes care of me. 265,000 and counting.
This is my 3rd MB Diesel and by far the best. 160,000 trouble free miles so far in classic style and comfort. Don't be afraid of a diesel - even in cold climates (I'm in Minnesota) it is more reliable than the gas versions and a great value if you can find a used one. I won't be trading up anytime soon.
This is my 4th Mercedes, my 3rd diesel. Wow, they got this one right. It's powerful, reasonably quiet, dead simple to maintain, and the parts aren't bad at all. Bought her with 235k on her, and did ball joints, tie rod ends, brake line ends, and an epic cleaning. Changed the oil and coolant several times, cleaning out the sins of the previous owner. I've put 10k miles on in 6 months, and nothing but smiles. I hit 40 mpg on a 800 mile road trip in October, and nailed 41 mpg on a 400 mile trek later that month! The daily commute gets 36 mpg in the summer, down to 31 in the winter. She's big, she's bad, she's comfortable, and the wife even likes her. Worth the steep price.
I cant say enough about this vehicle. We are the original owners. It is a fuel efficient, luxury work horse that still looks and runs like the day we drove it off the lot. Drawbacks are that it's a little noisy (but that's a trade off for the 550+ radius you can drive w/out refueling). You may find the air conditioning is not as efficient as gas models, and perhaps a little sluggish (pulling out into traffic)compared to a gas vehicle. If you can find one in nice shape, you will find that its attributes far outweigh these drawbacks.