2019 Shannons Melbourne Spring Classic Auction

1959 Mercedes-Benz 190SL Convertible

$180,000 - $210,000


Engine 1897cc in-line four-cylinder
Gearbox Four-speed manual
Engine No. 12192120015038
Chassis No. 12104220015053
Body Work Convertible
Colour Black
Interior Parchment
Trim Vinyl
Wheels Steel with hubcaps
Brakes Drum/drum

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Alongside the glamorous and fabulously expensive 300 SL ‘Gullwing’, Mercedes-Benz offered its affordable 190 SL sports car in the 1950s, the two models sharing a relationship similar to that of the SL and SLK today.  Conceived with the booming American market in mind, the 190 SL was Daimler-Benz’ first unitary construction platform, the immensely strong steel backbone chassis clothed in a mixture of steel and aluminium panels (including the bonnet, boot lid and doors) to keep weight down.  Derived from the unit found in the ‘Ponton’ range of family cars, the 1897cc four-cylinder engine developed 105 horsepower and drove the rear wheels through an all-synchromesh four-speed gearbox, while the hydraulic braking system used race-derived Al-fin drums.  One feature that made the 190 SL so popular was the choice of a folding hood or a beautifully made hardtop that effectively turned the SL into a snug coupe for the winter months.  Inside the 190 SL’s cockpit one finds an abundance of period detailing, from the padded dashboard and chrome horn ring to neat touches like the chrome courtesy light.  Build quality was typically Teutonic and all the qualities that made the 190 SL so popular in the latter part of the 1950s and early 1960s – such as its reliability, versatility and style - continue to attract enthusiasts today.  With values of its big brother 300 SL firmly in seven-figure territory today, the 190 SL also represents good value and has proven a solid investment over the last ten years.  This classic Mercedes-Benz roadster is guaranteed to turn heads and provide a thoroughly rewarding ownership experience.


  • Beautiful c1959 Mercedes Benz 190SL
  • Complete & correct restoration
  • Concours winner
  • Australian-delivered car
  • One of the very best in the country
An Australian-delivered original right-hand-drive car, this beautiful Mercedes Benz 190SL was first sold through York Motors in Sydney. Presenting in superb condition today, the car underwent a full restoration with its previous owner to the highest possible standards by Vehicle Colour Design in Rydalmere (Sydney). After being stripped back to bare metal, the body was repainted in two-pack baked enamel in stunning black paint, with all chrome work re-done or replaced as necessary. A new set of rubbers were then fitted including the bonnet, front screen, both doors and window bailey channels, soft frame, boot rubbers and boot mats. All gauges were restored, along with a rebuilt Becker Mexico radio (with iPod input) and an original speaker box added, to complete the period look. The interior has been completely re-trimmed by Car Interior Plus (Artarmon) with rebuilt seat frames, new seat pads and correct German square weave carpet. A new German canvas soft-top was added while the large-window hardtop was fully restored, with new headlining and rubber seals. As confirmed by the Mercedes Benz Classic Centre in Stuttgart, the car was then reupholstered in the original parchment colour. Mechanically, the rebuild included the motor and its twin Solex carburettors, plus the brakes, suspension and gearbox were also overhauled. The car sits on a set of 13in rims with the correct hubcaps and dress rims, fitted with wide whitewall tyres for that period look. All parts used in the restoration were genuine Mercedes-Benz and the quality of it is still apparent and resulted in many concours awards at NSW Mercedes Benz Car Club events. It remains a lovely car throughout, needing nothing, and must be one of the very finest 190SLs in the country. Previously on full Victorian registration, it is being offered here for sale unregistered.
Note: Shannons advise that all potential buyers research all vehicles before purchase to authenticate originality.

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