Friday, February 22, 2013

5k: 1971 Mercedes-Benz 280 SEL; W108; Class on Wheels

Anyone who likes any Mercedes must certainly appreciate the worth of the W108 series vehicles with the 4.5 liter V8. These have long been a favorite choice for a daily driver. The last of the breed to be endowed with rock solid workmanship, allowing you to take your in-laws out to dinner in a 42 year old car, without having to listen to them gripe about why you haven't bought a Camry to properly chauffeur their daughter.  This well preserved 1971 280 SEL 4.5 is currently available on Ebay.  The bidding, at $6,450 with just hours to go, has not yet tripped the seller's reserve.



Offered only from 1970-72, these cars started with the iconic Mercedes body style and presented the American market with a car with classic European lines and build quality, motivated by a properly sized fuel injected sucking 230HP V8.  Think of it as the Germans offering their version of a Cadillac CTS-V to the Americans.

The only problem with shopping these cars on the internet is reconciling the wild swings in price that are frequently encountered. These cars seem to be more price sensitive than most when it comes to exterior/interior color combinations and pop-up with asking prices between $4,500 - $15,000 in cars that appear remarkably similar.

This car presents very well with a very solid, if not subdued, tan exterior complimented by a dark tan interior. While the seller does not offer up much in the way of descriptions, the pictures speak volumes about the car's overall condition; which appears to be excellent.


While some will miss the authenticity/originality of the Becker radio, anyone putting the car into daily service will appreciate the updated stereo, the well preserved dash, A/C and floor shifted automatic.  The shoulder straps are separate of the lap belts and generally useless for tall drivers.


We certainly enjoy the sound of a good exhaust at high rev and rowing through the gears, but for the daily commute its nice just to flip on the A/C flicking the floor mounting shift into drive, enjoying the rudder-like response to steering inputs, and DARING anyone to get in your way while you purposefully attack your daily commute!  Before, you head off to consider the next blue/white prop adorned teutonic twisty tamer, consider putting your wife in this as a daily driver, freeing up necessary piles of cash to afford the canyon carver that you want for the weekends.


Before you go, take a look at the trunk on this car...No one needs a minivan with trunks like this one!
Next time you drive your wife's car...you'll be thinking about this one.  The next time your father-in-law utters an unflattering word...you will understand what Aldo Moro and Jimmy Hoffa understood about trunk space!
 



See another middle aged embassy motor pool car for cheap, email us at tips@dailyturismo.com

2 comments:

  1. Nice looking car - and the price was right. I prefer the pointy fog lights of the earlier cars, but a W108 always looks nice.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I used to own a 280SEL back in the early 80s, it was a great car, bought if for cheap and sold it for less a few years later. Always ran well, but taking it to the dealer was always painful to the pocketbook.

    ReplyDelete

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