5k: 1979 Mercedes-Benz 350SE Euro
The W116 chassis Mercedes-Benz was the first to use the S-Class nomenclature and was the premium luxury barge Benz, selling for approximately $20k in 1979 – a price that only a well connected mobster could afford. Today the W116s are bargain luxury classics with supremely durable build quality, expensive parts/labor and lots of examples to choose from. This Euro ‘grey market’ 1979 Mercedes-Benz 350SE stands out from the crowd because of its unique European only engine and bumpers – and is for sale on ebay for $2900 buy it now (located in Cold Springs Harbor, New York).
Its amazing how much better the European market Benzs look – with slim bumpers (not borrowed from a snow plow such as the US market version) and glass projector headlights instead of the worthless USDM sealed beam headlights. The lime green color is an excellent choice for the goon who wants to keep a low profile and avoid suspicions from the fuzz.
The 350SE is powered by a 3.5 liter V8 making 200 horsepower and 211 ft-lbs of torque (this was 10 hp more than the bigger 4.5 liter V8 for the US market cars). Its hooked up to a 3-speed slushbox automatic and the car won’t be fast – but it is a great highway cruiser and rides like a much newer car and should be good enough to keep pace with a P71 interceptor — the benchmark for any car that may be involved in a bank heist. More importantly – they are equipped with a huge battery that will allow a lookout to listen to hours of Sinatra mix-tapes and then start the engine instantly when the heat comes down upon him.
We love the interior on any old MBZ – and this one is no different. Its got a sweet tweed/checked interior in a complimentary lime green color, functional gauges, some real wood trim and dual climate control (you’d never know when the boss’s wife will be in the car and she’ll want the temperature set at 80 degrees and you’d be sweating in your wool suit if you couldn’t set your side to 60, if you know what I mean).
Best of all the W116 has a cavernous trunk with a self-leveling hydropneumatic suspension – making it easy to haul home some…uhh…fish from the market without hitting the speed bumps on fifty-foist street. Unfortunately some wise guy had to get crushed and the rear bumper was damaged – so this car needs some fixing, nuthin Louie the vee-eight over in Flatbush can’t fix – Louie’s got a mig welder that’s really useful getting information from people wit tight lips…
Would you buy this bulletproof (literally!) machine or get the one with the huge bumpers to avoid all that damage when you need some run over some wiseguy?
See a neighborhood that needs some protection? email us here: firstname.lastname@example.org
This car has some substantial needs. Not at all surprising for a 33-year-old, 187,000-mile car for $2900. However, this is a W116, so addressing those needs will be painfully expensive.
That said, a Euro-spec W116 is a truly beautiful car, classic and elegant. IMHO, the cloth seats and roll-up windows add to the cool factor. The SWB "SE" models like this one look a bit sleeker too.
I hope someone who knows what they are getting into can give this car the TLC it needs.
I bought this car for $2025.00… it was a steal to say the least. Had only on owner prior to my purchase. It came with $50,000 in maintenance receipts ($22k from the 2001 body restoration), dating back to 1979. It ran fine as is however it needed most of the vacuum system replaced ($120 worth of hoses) to get the cold idle/warm up to run correctly. New rear bumper 9 our of 10 condition was $125.00. New trunk lid was free off of a parts car I had. New fuel filter, fluids, other seals and gaskets… I spent less than $500 to get this car in great running condition, I'd be happy to take it on a 5 hour road trip. 180k miles is nothing to a well maintained Mercedes from the 70's. Starts up in one crank every time 🙂
Hey – that is indeed great news – send us a quick photo (or two) and we'll post up a success story about the car! email@example.com
Will do. I actually saw this post shortly after getting the car… I sent the link to my wife "see babe, this car really is awesome". We were looking at a few of these and she was actually the one that made the final call, she loved the exterior color and the unique interior. I'll take you up on the success story 🙂