Wayne Newton’s Coachbuilt 1981 Mercedes 380SL Roadster Looks Hideous
They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but there are boundaries to what you should and you shouldn’t be allowed to do to a car. This is especially true if we are talking about a car like the 1981 Mercedes-Benz 380SL. However, the desire for exclusivity spares no one, and this particular car, based on the R107 Mercedes Benz, is the perfect example.
Ultra Rare Street Legal AMG CLK GTR to go Under the Hammer at Pebble Beach
If you’ve ever wanted to own a road-legal race car, well here is your chance, provided you’ve got some deep pockets that is. Real deep. The CLK GTR is a road-going race car that Mercedes-Benz produced in the late 90s to comply with racing regulations that required them to make a set number of road-going variants. Only 25 were built, with 20 being coupes and 5 being roadsters. This particular example was number nine of those 25. Also, aside from the name, the CLK GTR had nothing in common with the CLK of the time.
This Mercedes SLS AMG EV Is Just 1 of 9 Made - Here’s What You Need to Know
Its full name was the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Coupe Electric Drive, and it was supposed to mark a new era for Mercedes-Benz, one that brought to market emission-free super sports cars with technology borrowed from Formula 1. Unfortunately, the all-electric SLS didn’t quite kick it for the carmaker, who would need almost a decade more to unveil the EQC, its first all-electric road car. Which happened to be an SUV, not a sports car.
Here’s all you need to know about the SLS AMG EV.
Amazing Car for Sale: 2009 Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren Stirling Moss
Nostalgia is a strong tool in marketing and when you’re Mercedes-Benz you’ve got a huge bank of memories to fall back on, a seemingly endless catalog of legendary models and memorable milestones and otherwise remarkable achievements, some of the more incredible having been achieved in the world of racing.
Among Mercedes’ finest days in the sun on the circuits of the world is the day when a journalist accompanied a then-up-and-coming driver to win a road race in Italy. The men were Denis Jenkinson and Stirling Moss and the car was the 300 SLR. 45 years after that victory for the ages in the Mille Miglia, Mercedes-Benz paid tribute to Moss, to Jenks, and to the SLR by building this, the SLR McLaren Stirling Moss.
1958 Mercedes-Benz 190 SL
The Mercedes-Benz 190 SL was the more laid-back version of the legendary 300 SL and, like its much more exclusive big brother, was a huge hit in the U.S., practically establishing the SL model in Mercedes’ range for decades to come.
The 190 SL, like the 300 SL, was born out of a suggestion from U.S. executive and luxury foreign car importer Max Hoffman who thought that a less expensive but still exciting and luxurious version of the 300 SL would appeal to the U.S. clientele. He’d previously come up with the idea of the road-going 300 SL as well, reckoning that America’s rich and famous would love to blitz down the country’s infinite highways aboard a more friendly version of Mercedes-Benz’s 1952 Le Mans winner, the W194 300 SL designed by Rudolf Uhlenhaut.
Due to Hoffman’s significant success as the Mercedes importer, the Stuttgart-based company decided to follow suit on his bold ideas and debuted prototypes of the two SLs at the 1954 New York International Motor Sports Show in February of that year.
Unlike the 300 SL, for which a purpose-built tubular spaceframe chassis was created, the 190 SL exhibited a tweaked version of the Mercedes-Benz 180’s underpinnings. As such, it received the W121 nomenclature with the sedan known as the W120.
Keep reading to learn more about the 1958 Mercedes-Benz 190 SL
Hugh Hefner’s 1969 Mercedes-Benz 600 Pullman
The death of Hugh Hefner has caused the world to turn its attention to the Playboy Magazine founder and publisher. Aside from his lavish lifestyle, infamous mansion, many wives, and countless mistresses, Hefner was also known for his car collection. From Corvettes to Ferraris, his garage was almost exciting as the pool’s grotto on a Friday night. But perhaps one of Heff’s classiest, rarest, and most highly regarded is his 1969 Mercedes-Benz 600 Pullman.
Mercedes began making the 600 limousine in 1963 and carried the car to 1981. Despite this 18-year production run, only 2,677 examples were built. That number is further divided into three thanks to the three body styles Mercedes offered. There was a short wheelbase, of which 2,190 were built. There was also a Landaulet (convertible rear top), of which only 59 were built. Then there’s Heff’s car – the long wheelbase version. While not as rare as the Landau, only 428 exist in the world. Adding to the 600’s worth is Mercedes’ over-engineering of nearly every component. Everything that moved was hydraulically operated, including the windows, sunroof, seat adjustments, trunk lid, and doors. It even has a load-leveling suspension, which of course, ran off hydraulic pressure. Powering the car and its 2,176-psi hydraulic pump was a massive 6.3-liter V-8 developing 300 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque. It was more than adequate for hustling the limo at speeds over 130 mph.
Heff’s six-door 600 was last known to have been sold in 2001 at a Barrett-Jackson auction. While that was 16 years ago, its price might surprise you. Keep reading for more.
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The 540K was the ultimate prewar Mercedes-Benz. And if we’re going to further subdivide the model by different body styles, the Special Roadster was the ultimate 540K. Build by special order only, the Special Roadster was one of the most expensive and exclusive cars of its day, and could be considered the pinnacle of prewar German
The 540K is also distinct in being one of the few prewar European luxury cars to come from a company big enough to have a presence outside of Europe. Because while it wasn’t unheard of for an American to own a European car in the years prior to WWII, the logistical framework often didn’t exist for them to buy these kinds of higher-end machines that needed to be special ordered.
The 540K is actually an evolution of the 500K, with this being based on the still earlier S/SSK. But the cars are not as similar as this might make them sound, and while the 540K used a lot of the same architecture as the 500K, the chassis construction was changed completely from that of the 500K, thanks to engineer Gustav Rohr, on loan from the highly successful Mercedes motorsports program.
Updated 02/01/2016: The Mercedes-Benz 540 K Special Roadster shown here just went under the hammer at RM Sotheby’s . Did it go for the expected $10 million? Check out the prices section to see for yourself.
Continue reading to learn more about the Mercedes-Benz 540 K Special Roadster.
The Mercedes 300 SL Gullwing has an interesting history, as it was originally nothing more than another race car in the early 1950s. An American importer by the name of Max Hoffman pressured Mercedes to turn the car into a road-going coupe for the masses, and eventually – in 1954 – Mercedes did just that. 1,400 units were built between 1954 and 1957, with a large majority going straight to the U.S. market. Since then, the car has become desirable and collectible, with examples going for more than $1 million in some cases. A recent sale of an example from 1954 was just sold by RK Motors Charlotte for a total of $1.9 million, marking a three-year high for the 1954 model.
Joseph Carroll, the president of RK Collection, said, “The ’54 Gullwing brought this record price because of its pristine condition and flawless mechanics.” He continued to say, “This typifies the exceptional quality of the vehicles we make available to car collectors both here in the U.S., and throughout the world. This is underscored by the fact that this transaction signifies a three-year high for a ’54 Gullwing, establishing a new price-point in the collector car market.”
This specific example, as shown in the picture above, had a silver body with red interior. It still had its original belly pans, books, tools, and even the optional Nardi steering wheel. In the 61 years of its existence, the car had only been driven a total of 45,687 miles – less than 1,000 miles per year. It should be noted that this isn’t the highest sale of a ’54 in recent years. Back in 2012, Barrett Jackson Collector Car Auction sold one for $2.2 million. Regardless, someone bought themselves a fine example of Mercedes history – one that was almost all original.
Continue reading for the full story.
The future of the luxury car market was very uncertain in the years immediately following WWII. With rationing still going in parts of Europe into the ’50s, and most German manufacturers having had their factories [justifiably] bombed by the Allies, it wasn’t entirely clear in the late ’40s and early ’50s just who would be either building or buying luxury cars. The companies that made successful luxury cars in the years immediately following the war were those that learned to emphasize performance, handling, and build quality over things like bespoke bodywork that had driven the prewar luxury car market.
One of the most successful of this new kind of luxury car was the Mercedes-Benz 300 series limousines, which debuted in 1951. The following year, Mercedes made a coupe based on the 300 that was called the 300s, and this was followed up by an improved version called the 300Sc. The car was available as a hardtop coupe, cabriolet and roadster. It’s all very similar to how Mercedes uses the current S-Class, a car that is available as a sedan, limo, coupe and soon even as a convertible. It was a big success for Mercedes, and gave established top-tier luxury marques a run for their money.
Continue reading to learn more about the 1956 Mercedes-Benz 300 SC Roadster.
Homologation special. It’s not a term that gets applied to cars much anymore, but it’s brought us some great ones. Think, 1985 Ferrari 288 GTO, 1981-1991 Audi Sport Quattro, and 1973 Porsche 911 2.7 RS. The idea is to require a manufacturer to build ‘x’ number of road-going versions of whatever car it wants to take racing. It prevents engineers from coming up with anything too crazy and forms a tangible link between what fans see on the track and what they can put in their driveways. Then, a company like Toyota comes along and builds two road-going GT-One Le Mans racers and blows up the entire notion.
Then there’s the Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.5-16 Evolution II. Debuting in 1990, the Evo II, as it came to be called, was designed to do one thing: beat BMW in Germany’s DTM touring car race series. Unlike the DTM of today, which is comprised of carbon-chassis, purpose-built silhouette racecars, the DTM of the early ’90s was populated with cars built on road-car platforms and powered by road-car engines.
After getting trounced by BMW M3s and the odd Ford Sierra Cosworth during the 1989 DTM season, Mercedes went to work updating its 190 E 2.5-16 Evolution. The 190 E 2.5-16 Evolution II was unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show ahead of the 1990 season, with more power and a wild new body kit. All 502 road cars required for homologation sold out before it was even unveiled. At around the same time, AMG (still an independent company) went to work converting an allotment of Evo IIs to race cars.
The Evo II debuted in the third round of the 1990 season at the Nürburgring with Kurt Thiim behind the wheel. Thim went on to finish the season in third behind championship winner Hans-Joachim Stuck in an Audi V8 quattro and second-place Johnny Cecotto in a BMW M3 Sport Evolution. Things went a bit better in 1991, when Klaus Ludwig drove his Mercedes to second overall, again behind an Audi, but the Evo II didn’t hit its stride until the 1992 season, when Mercedes drivers Klaus Ludwig, Kurt Thiim and Bernd Schneider swept the top three championship spots.
Because of its extremely low volume and ridiculously high cost when new (reportedly $80,000 in 1990), the Evo II road cars didn’t enjoy the same exposure as the BMW M3, but those same factors are what make it so desirable and collectible 25 years after it was first built.
Continue reading to learn more about the 1990 Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.5-16 Evolution II.
Mercedes-Benz only built 26 road-going CLK GTRs, and of those, just six were roadsters. Now, one of these open-top homologation specials will be auctioned in June at the Bonhams event at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, where it could sell for as much as $2.8 million — a steep price for a very rare, very fast car.
De Telegraaf Autovisie reports that this 1999 CLK GTR Roadster has never been driven on the road and, amazingly, has just six kilometers on the odometer. Its current owner, an anonymous Dutch collector, purchased it as an investment and is apparently ready to cash in. It’s the only black CLK GTR ever built and is one of five left-hand-drive examples. The only right-hand-drive CLK GTR Roadster was built for the Sultan of Brunei. Obviously.
The CLK GTR was designed as a race car first and a road car second, with little mind paid to driver comfort and road-going behavior. With a mid-mounted 6.9-liter V-12 producing around 612 horsepower and cursory styling cues borrowed from the mass-production CLKcoupe, it was devastatingly effecting, winning the FIA GT Championship in 1998 and 1999. It was so dominant that it drove every other manufacturer out of the GT1 class and nearly killed the series.
Following the on-track success, Mercedes fulfilled the FIA’s homologation requirement by tasking AMG with the construction of the 26 road cars. Only 25 were required, but Mercedes wanted to keep one for itself. The six roadsters featured a redesigned engine cover and integrated roll bars. The fixed rear wing more closely resembled the one on the race car, instead of the stylized curved wing from the hardtop.
Continue reading for the full story.
A Formula One racecar belonging to arguably the greatest F1 driver in history is apparently such a collector’s item that people will deep pockets are willing to pay a moon’s price for it.
That much was made very clear at the recent Goodwood Festival of Speed after Juan Manuel Fangio’s 1954 Mercedes-Benz W196 sold for a staggering $29.6 million, making it the most expensive car to be sold at a public auction, the most expensive F1 race car ever and, as a cherry on top of the proverbial sundae, the most expensive Mercedes in history.
Lots of "expensive" there, huh?
The racecar, which was sold at a Bonhams auction late last week, is the same one Fangio used to win his second Formula One title in what became an illustrious and now legendary career. It’s noted for being the racecar that introduced a bevy of new technologies into F1, including the use of a fuel-injected engine, an all-independent suspension from Mercedes, a multi-tubular ’spaceframe’ lightweight chassis design, all-round inboard-mounted brakes, and the ’straight-8’ engine ’laydown’ configuration that reduces the car’s overall height.
Suffice to say, this Mercedes racecar is that rare gem in automotive history that commands a price depending on how deep the pockets of the bidders are.
And apparently, "deep" meant to the tune of $29.6 million.
Click past the jump to read about Juan Manuel Fangio
The Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing is a rare enough car, as there were only 3,258 examples ever built. Of those, only 1,400 were coupes. So, when you start talking about special edition models, you are getting into some of the rarest cars in the world.
When the SL300 was busy kicking ass at venues like the 24 Hours of Nürburgring and 24 Hours of Le Mans, it was not the standard road-going model that you saw. In fact, the car you saw boasted a completely different body. All of the road-going cars, prior to the car’s retirement from racing boasted a steel body and the racing models featured a lighter allot body.
After the 300SL’s retirement from racing, the alloy body became a 5,000 Deutsche Marks option on the already pricey base 300SL. Because of this massive markup, only 29 models were ever built and sold to the general public, thus making it one of the rarest Mercedes-Benz’s available today.
To read more about the 300SL Alloy Gullwing, click past the jump.
So picture that you just snagged up a car for, let’s say $3,800, and it is a great car that you completely fall in love with. A year later, you find out that the car was illegally seized according to a court ruling and you have to hand the car over to the heirs of its original owner. You’d be pretty upset, right? Well, add three zeros to that price and you that exact situation unfolding in Germany.
A Dutch car collector purchased a 1935 Mercedes-Benz 500K Roadster from RM Auctions last year for a whopping $3.8 million in California. When the collector shipped the car back to Germany, the German government seized the car stating that it was illegally taken by an American military official around 1945 and shipped to the U.S., as the heirs of the pricy automobile are claiming that the American serviceman stole the vehicle and hid it in the U.S.
Typically, Germany has a 30-year statute of limitation on this sort of case, but a German court stated that since the car was not in Germany for 30 years, the limitation clock never started, which is an odd interpretation of statute of limitations laws. The strangest thing is that between 1945 and 1970, no one has any idea where the car was and what was being done with it, so there is technically no proof that the car was not in Germany, and we find the ruling a little off the wall.
We certainly hope that the buyer can recoup at least a majority of the $3.8 million he used to purchase the car from the seller. Also, there has to be some U.S. law on the books that puts RM Auctions on the hook for selling a car with a shady and undocumented past that just may cost the collector millions of dollars.
One thing’s for sure, if this car wasn’t worth $3.7 million, we are willing to bet that the heirs couldn’t have cared less about getting back the property… We’ll keep you updated as this story progresses.
The 2013 Mercedes SL63 AMG hasn’t even made its official debut just yet and already Mercedes is giving the first one away. Okay, technically, they’re not giving it away, but they are certainly not selling it directly to one of their customers. When the first unit of the SL63AMG hits Stateside, Mercedes will be sending it to the Boca Raton Concours d’Elegance Gala for their 6th annual auction on February 25, 2012.
The upcoming SL63 AMG will be powered by a 5.5-liter twin turbo V8 engine that will delivers about 540 HP. A Black Series version will also be offered and has been rumored to deliver more than the current 661 HP version. The model will be distinguished from the standard SL-Class by a more aggressive design including a long hood, AMG wheels, cross-drilled brakes, a rear wing, and new AMG quad exhausts.
A 2012 Audi R8 GT Spyder and a Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 will also be at the auction, making for a great opportunity to skip the waiting list.
Put the word iconic in front of anything and its price will undoubtedly skyrocket. Case in point: The Mercedes 300SL Gullwing is an amazing and iconic model in the history of Mercedes’ vehicles, inspiring many of the models that succeeded, including the SLS AMG. One of the 29 models ever created was put up at the Gooding & Company auction where it was sold for $4.62 million, a new record for this vehicle.
So what’s so special about this Mercedes? Aside from its limited availability, the 300SL Gullwing was built off of the 300SL Racer and features an aluminum alloy body with stiffer, shorter springs that lowered the car and enhanced peak performance. It sits on wider rims housing vented brake drums and was about 200 lbs lighter than the standard steel-bodied version.
The specific Mercedes 300SL Gullwing that was auctioned off had a metallic silver gray exterior finish that was complimented by a blue leather interior. It was also outfitted with Rudge wheels, the NSL motor, and Plexiglas windows per aluminum-build specifications.
Despite being only five years old, the Boca Raton Concours d’ Elegance in Florida has become a prime event for auto enthusiasts because of the number of first edition production cars being auctioned off there. In recent years, the Concours has been able to sell off first production models of the 2010 Audi R8 V10 5.2 FSI Quattro, the 2010 Ferrari California, the 2011 Ferrari 458 Italia, the 2011 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG, and the 2011 Audi R8 V10 Spyder, to name a few.
This year, two new highly anticipated supercars are scheduled to be in attendance at the Boca Raton Concours and, as has been the custom for this event, the first edition models of these two cars are going to be up for auction. Prepare to open your checkbooks, gentlemen. The 2012 Ferrari FF and the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Roadster are coming to Boca Raton.
The event is scheduled to kick off next weekend, February 26th, 2011, where it is expected to draw even more attendees, most of whom are looking to grab a piece of the first-edition models of the two aforementioned machines. If these people fail to scoop the big kahunas, they can still opt for some awesome “consolation” prices, including the first Audi R8 GT in the US, the first of only 30 Mercedes CLS63 AMG ‘C’ Limited Edition vehicles, and, if you’re a fan of Jay Leno, an opportunity to take a tour of his world-famous garage.
Okay, listen, if you’ve ever heard of a little sport called basketball, then you have no doubt heard of a certain player that goes by the name of Michael Jordan. Yes, the one and the only, Michael Jordan. Turns out, this very same dribbling, dunking, tongue-hanging-out, Space Jam star who has an elite line of basketball shoes himself has an equally impressive vehicle that is currently on sale on eBay. Oh yeah, this car also happens to be the hot, limited edition Mercedes SLR 722. Wait, yeah, perfection has raised its hand to say hello.
The SLR 722 Edition is powered by a 5.5-liter V8 supercharged engine that delivers 640 Hp and 820 NM of torque. The result is an impressive 0 to 60 mph time of 3.6 seconds, a 0 -124 mph time of 10.2 seconds, and a 0 to 186 mph time of 28.0 seconds. Top speed is 209 mph.
Modifications made to the car include: 19-inch light-alloy wheels, modified suspensions, with a stiffer damper setup and 10 mm (0.39 in) lower ride height introduced for improved handling, larger 390 mm (15 in) diameter front brakes and a revised front air dam and rear diffuser, red "722" badge, hearkening back to the original 722 racer, and slightly different taillights and headlamps.
The former NBA star rocket is being sold by A&M Auto Export for about $50,000 less than what the base SLR 722 sold for back in 2007. But at $429,998, this vehicle is more than worth it considering all of the modifications that were added plus the low mileage (odometer reads 962 miles). That, and the fact that the man himself had to sign the title for the vehicle. A rare and beautiful car and an autograph.
Say what you want about Elvis Presley, but the King of Rock and Roll sure knows how to roll around in grand style.
Years after his untimely death, Bonhams has decided to put one of Elvis’ vintage classics up for auction at the year-end sale of Important Motor Car and Fine Automobilia. This particular one, a 1970 Mercedes-Benz 600 SWB limousine, is especially important because it’s one of only a few cars that were registered in Elvis Presley’s name.
The collector’s Benz, which comes with a powder blue finish and a cream leather interior, will be the highlight piece of the auction that’s scheduled for December 6 in Surrey, UK. How it ended up there on the other side of the Atlantic is anyone’s guess. But what’s important is that this car is a true one-of-a-kind that was once ridden by one of the most iconic figures in the 20th century.
So, if you’re a big fan of the King of Rock and Roll – not to mention that you have tons of money to spare – you can make a serious bid for this 1970 Merc 600 SWB limousine. In the event that you really are planning to bid on this car, you might want to bring with you around $300,000, which is the expected price tag the car is expected to fetch.
UPDATED 12/14/10: We’ve just gotten word that The King’s 1970 Mercedes-Benz 600 was officially scooped up by a German buyer at Mercedes-Benz World near Weybridge, Surrey, U.K. for a price of $187,390 including the buyer’s premium. It’s way short than what the expected price tag was but still, $187,390 for a car that was once ridden by Elvis Presley himself? Not a bad deal if you ask us.
2005 Mercedes-Benz CLK GTR Coupe and 2006 Mercedes-Benz CLK GTR Roadster fetch a combined £1.1 million at the RM Auctions
While most of us are drooling over the prospect of driving off into the sunset with the supercar of our dreams, two people who attended the recent RM Auction in London went home with their own supercars that they can now proudly call their own.
Two of the main attractions at the said auction were a pair Mercedes-Benz CLK GTRs – one was a 2005 Coupe version and the other was of the 2006 Roadster variety. Expensive and rare – only 20 coupes and five roadsters were ever built – at the same time, the CLK GTRs sold for a combined £1.1 million – a ‘somewhat’ bargain price considering the ‘beyond exclusive’ tag attached to these two cars.
While the two new – and lucky – owners of these cars were not identified, we do know that the 2005 CLK GTR Coupe sold for £522,500 while the 2006 Roadster version fetched a pretty cool £616,000.
It also goes without saying that the GTRs are not your prototypical Mercedeses. Fine-tuned by no less than HWA, the cars come with a 6.9-liter V12 engine that’s capable of churning out up to 612 horsepower. In addition to that, the two models also came with reinforced features including a six-speed sequential manual gearbox, a dual independent double-wishbone suspension, and carbon fiber brakes.
For the record, we don’t have that kind of money so the very idea of purchasing these cars shall, and will forever be a pipe dream for us. But in the wishful scenario that we did have £1.1 million to throw around, then investing on not one, but two cars of this stature is something that we’d also do in a heartbeat.
Press Release after the jump
With all the events taking place in Monterey, California every August, the Russo and Steele event is a must go. It is much smaller than the Scottsdale auction but it is certaintly Monterey styled for the VIPs. Nonetheless, there were over 150 cars running over the auction block for a combined total of over $10 million in sales.