2020 Shannons Winter Timed Online Auction
1971 Mercedes-Benz 300SEL 3.5 Saloon
Bids Close: Wednesday 26 August 8.28pm AEST*
|Colour||Silver Grey Metallic|
This lot is no longer available
Replacing the Fintail saloons at the top of the Mercedes-Benz model hierarchy, the W108/109 was launched at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 1965. This was effectively the birth of the legendary S-class line that continues as the pinnacle of luxury motoring to this day. With sharp, modern styling by Paul Bracq, the car was available in two wheelbase lengths - the other significant difference between the W108 and W109 models being the complex self-levelling air suspension on the latter. As the flagship in the S-class range, the long wheelbase 300 SEL came with higher equipment levels, including electric windows, central locking and velour carpeting. Other changes included a long-range fuel tank and of course, the innovative air suspension system. Under the bonnet, the 300 SEL initially used the all alloy 3-litre six-cylinder engine and automatic transmission (from 1966 a ZF five-speed manual box became an option). In 1968, the elderly 3-litre M189 engine was superseded by a fuel injected version of the newer M130 2.8-litre unit, developing the same 170 bhp, along with a few changes to the interior. From August 1969 the range expanded further to include the powerful new small-block V8 engine designed with the American market in mind. The M116 motor boasted the latest Bosch D-Jetronic electronic fuel injection system and developed a healthy 197bhp and the four-speed automatic ‘box with fluid coupling was the only transmission available. Proving the most popular member of the W109 family, a total of 9483 300 SEL 3.5 sedans were made before the line was discontinued in September 1972. With advanced safety features and cutting-edge technology, the W109 S-class was years ahead of the competition and prices of these classic Benz saloons have shown rapid appreciation in recent years.