Would you believe me if I told you that you could have bought these two cars at the same time? The W114 phased out of production in 1976. The W123 was introduced in 1976.
Yet these cars could not be more different. And no, I’m not just talking about one being a coupe and the other a wagon.
They both have a very Mercedes-esque elegance to the, but in totally different ways
The W114 makes a far more deliberate use of chrome to accentuate the lines of the car. The W123 makes a more liberal use.
The front ends of both cars have a similar design language, but are totally different. This particular W123 was blessed with being a Euro-market model, giving it the far more attractive headlights. The W114 was a US-spec model, leaving it with large sidemarkers on the front clip.
The rear ends have perhaps the most interesting differences. Mercedes abandoned the chrome tail light surrounds from the W114 and removed the integrated reverse light, placing it in the bumper of the W123 instead. I personally think it gives the rear end a certain simplicity.
On another note, go follow the owner of the wagon’s brand, @wagonestate on Instagram. He posts some awesome stuff.