Lot 203

Monterey 2014

1960 Mercedes-Benz 190 SL Roadster


$143,000 USD | Sold

United States | Monterey, California



Chassis No.
Body No.
  • Numerous original accessories
  • Attractive colors

120 bhp, 1,897 cc SOHC inline four-cylinder engine with twin Solex carburetors, four-speed manual gearbox, independent front suspension with coil springs, swing axle rear suspension with coil springs, and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 94.5 in.

The Mercedes-Benz 190SL was the vision of Max Hoffman, Mercedes’ representative in the United States. Hoffman understood that while the 300SL Gullwing Coupe might certainly catch American buyers’ attention, it had two drawbacks; first, it was a coupe, and second, it was very expensive. Knowing that the American market was ideally suited for convertibles, Hoffman pressured Mercedes-Benz management to build a simpler, less costly open model for the U.S. market, and the result was the Mercedes-Benz 190SL.

The 190SL incorporated many advanced engineering features and was powered by a single overhead-camshaft, four-cylinder engine. As the 190SL was equipped with four-wheel drum brakes, conventional doors, and a simple swing-axle rear suspension, it was best suited for stylish cruising rather than performance driving. Max Hoffman’s understanding of the American car market was right on target, and more than 26,000 190SL Roadsters were produced between 1955 and 1963.

The 190 SL Roadster offered here is an example of the most iconic of open Mercedes-Benzes. While in previous enthusiast ownership, it was restored in its current light blue with a dark blue leather interior, and it has been fitted with whitewall radial tires, matching wheel covers, and a navy convertible top. Among the Roadster’s many desirable features are a Blaupunkt radio, an original speaker box, and a VDO clock mounted on the glove box door, as well as front and rear over-riders.

This 190SL is attractive overall, and it would make for spirited top-down touring with its fortunate new owner.