Mercedes-Benz 380
Vehicle Make/Model Specifications:
Make: Mercedes-Benz
Model: 380
Mercedes-Benz 380

Automakers are not immune to the other happenings of the world by any means. Following the fuel crisis, part of the program was to reduce weight and increase power with decreased engine weight. This change would alone provide for the cars to be more fuel-efficient which was a big deal then, and seems to have been taken more proactively than it is being taken today. The use of lighter materials and alloys in combination with wind tunnel testing to reduce overall drag meant the car consumed about 10% less fuel than its predecessor. On early models of the 380, the engines came with a single row timing chain. Unfortunately, these models were plagued with chain failure problems but things were corrected as Mercedes-Benz made the repairs, free of charge. The reason for the vulnerability of a single row chain on this engine is because of the intricate rails. Simple single cam engines generally do not have these same problems when using a single chain. However, some models escaped the retrofit and may at some point fail as a result. Granted, by this point, the failures would have already reared their ugly faces. By 1985, all models were equipped with the dual-row chain from the factory. The Mercedes-Benz 380 premiered at the Frankfurt International Motor Show in September 1979. The 380 was initially both a short and a long wheelbase sedan, but in September 1981 with the introduction of the coupe, the model line was then expanded even more. During the car's twelve-year production run between 1979 and 1991 the different body styles achieved the combined sales of an astounding 892,123 units with 74,060 being coupes. This has made the 380 the most popular S-Class to date. It is presumed that Mercedes Benz should look at their successful models and interpret what they were doing correct and return to that blueprint.

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