2020 Shannons Winter Timed Online Auction

1971 Mercedes-Benz 300SEL 3.5 Saloon


Wednesday 26 August 8.28pm AEST*




Engine V8, 3499cc
Gearbox 4-speed automatic
Body Work Saloon
Colour Silver Grey Metallic
Interior Blue
Trim Leather
Wheels Steel disc
Brakes Discs


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  In 1968, the elderly 3-litre M189 engine was superseded by a fuel injected version of the newer M130 2.8-litre unit, developing the same 170 bhp, along with a few changes to the interior.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.