1970 Mercedes-Benz 280 SL 'Pagoda'

Sold For $46,200

Inclusive of applicable buyer's fee.

RM | Auctions - FORT LAUDERDALE 6 - 7 APRIL 2018

Chassis No.
  • Offered from single ownership since 1989
  • Desirable four-speed transmission, air conditioning, and hardtop/soft top
  • Fewer than 82,000 original miles
  • Wonderful color combination

In 1963, Mercedes-Benz ended production of its two sporting roadsters, the expensive high-performance 300 SL and the affordable 190 SL suitable for weekend cruising. The 230 SL on the new W113 roadster chassis that replaced them was an attractive compromise of performance and affordability. With its tradition-breaking lines penned by designer and artist Paul Bracq, the car was an obvious choice for films like Two for the Road with Audrey Hepburn and Albert Finney. The light and airy detachable hardtop, with its concave roof, was the source of the "Pagoda" nickname for the W113 roadsters.

The 230 SL was well received, but its performance was a bit disappointing due to the limited power of its 2.3-liter engine. Without changing the design, it was replaced in 1967 with the interim 250 SL, and then in 1968 by the more powerful 2.8-liter inline six-cylinder engine. The 280 SL would stay in production for three years before it was replaced by the R107-chassis 350 SL.

The current owner, a longtime enthusiast, had long wanted a 280 SL but sought one with the desirable four-speed manual transmission. He eventually found the car offered here, purchasing it in 1989 from a seller in Oxnard, California, and has now owned it for nearly 30 years. Minor repairs to the ignition and trim were completed in 2000, with receipts on file along with an original owner's manual. Aside from minor wear to the original, lovingly patinaed MB-Tex interior and the newer top, it presents very nicely, for continued driving exercise and enjoyment.

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