The Cars

1978 Mercedes Benz 200D 4 Door Sedan

A basic German-built tank I owned during two years of my three-year assignment in Naples, Italy. This was a solid German spec diesel sedan that my first wife and I used to explore Italy for the two years we owned it. It has been my only diesel-powered car. It was roomy, comfortable, and economical even by European standards. I have fond memories of this car for the association with exploring the beautiful Italian countryside.

This photo was taken in the mountains just outside of Naples, Italy, in the winter of 1991/1992, on the road leading to the Monastery of Monte Vergine.

Read The History

1978 Mercedes Benz 200D 4 Door Sedan Specifications

– From private party, 1990, Naples, Italy
– Sold to private party, 1993, Naples, Italy
Features: – Taxi-cab Yellow with Green interior
– 2.0 Liter 4-cylinder Diesel, later upgraded to 2.4-liter diesel
– 4 speed manual transmission
– Manual Choke, later upgraded to automatic with the larger engine
– German lighting standard including split parking/snow lights
– Fog Lights
– AM/FM Stereo
– Mercedes Hood Ornament
Major Repairs: Originally equipped with a 200D engine. The engine failed within one year of purchase and was replaced by a local dealer with a 240D engine. The larger engine provided slightly faster acceleration and more power. Original engine had a manual choke, was replaced with automatic choke with engine swap out.
Comments: No power steering, built like a tank.
External Reference: Wikipedia Entry for Mercedes-Benz 240 D Series
Fact Sheet for 1978 Mercedes-Benz 240 D

Photo Collection

For all the photos I took during the three years I explored Italy (and other parts of Europe) I have very few with our Mercedes included. This would have been taken some time in spring of 1992 on the Sorrento Peninsula, one of my favorite local weekend drives.

1978 Mercedes Benz 200D 4 Door Sedan Factory Brochure

Cover of the 1978 Mercedes 200D Sedan Factory Brochure. This is actually an insert into the entire brochure package. Mercedes produced a rather lengthy and wordy description of all their Mercedes models for this year, together with brochure packets for each model. In the interests of keeping this relevant, I only posted scans of the 200D model.

The car was large and very roomy inside, but no “frills”.

Final page includes the technical data for this model. Simple and straightforward, pretty much like the car itself.

One of the more interesting features of this car – to me – was the German spec lighting. The car’s parking lights could be selected so only one side was illuminated. I was told this was for German winters – cars parked on the streets were required to have their street-side parking lights left on, so snowplows could see the cars. In southern Italy I never had need to use this light setting.


1977 Chevrolet LUV (Isuzu Luv Series Six) Pickup Truck
1979 MG Midget 1500
1980 Chevrolet Chevette 4 door Hatchback
1988 Isuzu LS SpaceCab Pickup Truck
1976 Alfa Romeo Alfetta 1.6 Four Door Sedan
1978 Mercedes Benz 200D 4 Door Sedan
1991 Volvo 240 Sedan
2004 Isuzu Rodeo LS SUV
2000 Volkswagen New Beetle GL 2 Door Hatchback
2009 Nissan Versa 1.8S Hatchback
2013 Nissan Versa 1.6SV Sedan 
2015 Jeep Cherokee “Latitude”
2024 Thor Scope 18G RV
Final Thoughts and Table of Changes

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  1. […] basis over an eleven year period for family visits. My more memorable trips were made with the MG Midget  I briefly owned, but ghosts of my frequent commutes are everywhere along the I-5 […]

    March 26, 2015
  2. docreport said:

    Yikes, trying to comment and somehow ended up in your WordPress control panel. That was weird!

    So anyway, found someone that’s owned a few cars like me,although I have ya beat by around 20 LOL.

    Read most of your R. Garwood story. Geez that sucks.

    January 2, 2016

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