If you own a Mercedes-Benz that dates from the mid 1970s through the mid 1990s, almost every model, you may have noticed a little plastic strap, under the carpet in your trunk, sticking out of the spare tire cover. If you know what that’s for, hit your back button and read something else… if you don’t, read on and prepare yourself, once again, to marvel at the ingenious German engineers at Mercedes who seemed to have thought of everything when designing the Mercedes of this era. I’ve always thought of this era at Mercedes-Benz as a time when the design and engineering departments seemed to have the final say as opposed to the financial and business related departments that seem to rule today.
Scroll through the photos below and all will be revealed…
This is just another one of those little details that are built into these cars that many people don’t realize is there, or if they see that strap, they don’t always know what it’s for. The strap itself has an embossed part number on it “123 693 00 14”. So it would seem that this part was first used in the W123 chassis cars which began production in 1976. The same strap was used on W126 cars as well as R107s and even W124 cars.
Mercedes today, say, a new C class or even the GLK from 2010 and later have a similar system to hold up the ‘trunk floor’ or carpet covered fiber board found in most of the new cars, it isn’t a tabbed strap like this, but those cars have their own engineered solutions to keep that piece up and out of the way when accessing the spare tire area.
How Mercedes-Benz engineers figured out such a system or even identified the need for such a thing emphasizes the attention to detail that went into designing these cars whether that was 40 years ago or just a few years ago.