Re: Long Time Listener, First Time Caller
I would have gone with the 300TD. Since that's what I usually drive to work. My wife used to have an Escort like yours. Five miles in one of those is enough, never mind 6000. May the odds be always in your favor...
I've only driven it around 20 miles so far, but it didn't seem TOO bad. My mother owned one of the late 90's steel body ones, which were so ugly, they were cool.
As for the 300TD, are you referring to the wagon or the sedan? The sedan is turbo, and the wagon isn't. But those cars are definitely in the cards for the next couple of years. I've never owned a diesel nor do i know much about them. My only concern is that i've seen them running for around $800-$900 on Craigslist, whereas he wanted $1,000 for these two. Maybe it isn't too bad of a deal?
If those two were local, I'd buy them for $1000/pair. The sedan is a 300SD (3.0 litre S class diesel) and the wagon is a 300TD (3.0 "touring"=wagon diesel) and the T means wagon, not turbo, though the sedan has one. I've driven a 300TD turbo (most call it a 300TDT) for the past 9 years. It's outlasted 2 Lemons race cars, 2 BMW dd's, and 4 gas powered Benzes. Absolutely unstoppable.
Seriously, a NICE wagon diesel is $20k plus nowadays, they are that intangible kind of awesome. That one isn't worth restoring, but it sure as hell would be a good rally choice. If they have enough compression to start cold, they will run forever, and the running gear is all the same stuff as they put on a 5.0 V8 S class, so it's under stressed.
You don't need to really know a lot about diesels. If the engine has good compression, use good oil (shell Rotella 15-40 is my favorite) and clean fuel, and drive with no f***s given. It'll work. Trust me
Judges Choice and Regional Award winner! Chuckwalla '12, Buttonwillow '13, BFE GP '15, Miller '14 & '15, Sonoma '13,'14,'15,'17. Inde '16,17. Other foolishness: Finisher of the inaugural Lemons Rally, in the black Jag.... and IOE in the Super Snipe back in '12.