Friday, April 3, 2020

5-Speed Manual Swapped R107: 1981 Mercedes-Benz 380SL

This next car is offered by the seller as a "project" but it is much nicer than 99% of the projects offered for passes smog and has a manual gearbox swapped behind the 3.8 liter V8.  Sure, it needs some cosmetic work on the interior and needs new rear glass, but the real kicker is that these R107 Mercedes-Benz coupes are so under-priced in the market compared to anything else with two seats and German build quality.  Buy one. Buy another.  Get a barn.  Make the news in 30 years. Find this 1981 Mercedes-Benz 380SL offered for $5500 in Concord, CA via craigslist.

From the seller:
1981 mercedes benz 380sl
condition: good
cylinders: 8 cylinders
drive: rwd
fuel: gas
odometer: 128338
paint color: silver
title status: clean
transmission: manual
type: convertible
1981 380SL. Converted to 5-speed manual. Some projects completed (e.g., new rear half-shafts), others I wanted to do but are not possible for me any more. I have a new convertible top (in box) to be installed. Excellent smog test resu8lts (tuned by professional MB mechanic). Good project car for someone interested in classic cars. 

See a better way to drive a manual gearbox equipped benz?


  1. Wrong coast by 3000 miles and we're in a pandemic lockdown - yet I'm still contemplating how I might put this in my garage. The 380 V8 is a great mill except for a weak single row timing chain as its Achilles' heel. Chances are this has a fresh chain and with a manual and likely bullet proof transmission all I see here is industrial strength WIN.

    My only gripe with the ad: does the AC work?

  2. I guess someone else shared my disappointment over the fact all of these seem to be autos ( in north America at least, lots of manual ones in Europe) and decided to do something about it.

  3. Weren’t the manual transmissions only in six cylinder cars? Seems like there might be more complications than just swapping it n a transmission and third pedal.


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