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Auction: Auction 04.12.2001
was auctioned on: 4 December 2001
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Estimate: £15,000 - £20,000
ca. US$21,593 - US$28,791
Price realised:  £17,625
ca. US$25,372
Lot number 37, Views: 131

1968 MERCEDES-BENZ 280 SL ROADSTER WITH HARD TOP Registration No. UFU 392H Chassis No. 11304422012436 Engine No. 1309832200821 Metallic silver with black interior Engine: Six cylinder, single overhead camshaft, 2778cc, 170bhp at 5700 rpm; Gearbox: automatic transmission; Brakes: four-wheel disc; Suspension: independent all round with coil springs, single joint swing angle at rear. Right hand drive. The Mercedes 280SL is a truly exceptional example of Benz quality and styling which makes it one of the most sought after classics of today. Considered by many to be the most practical sports car of its generation, it offers the excitement of a sports cabriolet which more than holds its own in today's driving conditions. After the success of the 230SL and the 250SL models, Mercedes went on to produce the definitive 280SL which retained the elegant body shape with the addition of the more powerful 2778cc injection engine. The car on offer was featured in a road test in Classic Cars in December 1999. The object of which was to pitch the Mercedes against a 1969 Jaguar E type Series 2 Coupé, to ascertain the best 'Double Agent' of sports car duplicity, those refined GTs in the city that become thrill-seekers on the open road. The article favourably comments on the model that 'No mystery surrounds the passion with which the 280 SL is supported - its excellence emanates from every pore.' It continues to note that you could 'drive the Mercedes forever without tiring' and concludes that 'it's testament to the skills of its designers that it can also be encouraged to behave with as much sporting gusto as it does. It was always intended as a luxury cruiser with the capacity to out-perform all but the purest sports cars, and it achieves this with distinction.' Such magazine articles are commonplace as the model is often coveted for its usability and with pagoda hard top or soft top is a practical car for all climates. It may have been such a feature that inspired the present owner of this car to acquire it two years ago with the intention of using it for everyday transport. In choosing the car, he decided to approach one of the most renowned dealers in Mercedes-Benz, Silver Arrows Automobiles of Putney, and purchased the car that had been featured in the magazine. A tidy example, the Mercedes has clearly been well-maintained and at some stage received a repaint, to the original and preferred metallic silver livery. In previous ownership the engine had been rebuilt, and since acquisition by the vendor, the fuel pump, points have been replaced. Today the car presents well, although on inspection it is evident that there are a few very minor isolated areas of corrosion. When run by our specialists we felt that it would benefit from a service. A handbook, copies of invoices, expired MoT certificates together with a current one and road fund licence come with the car, which is offered for sale due to the vendor moving house.

Informations about the auction
Auction house: Christie's
Title: Auction 04.12.2001
Date of the auction: 4 Dec 2001
Address: Christie's
London,The Jack Barclay Showroom