It has been almost a year since Hunsbloger penned his Pulitzer worthy Market Watch: 1970-73 Mercedes-Benz W108 280 SE 4.5: Update on the Bull, the Bear and the BS and the essential fact remains that the W108 is a great way to get into a vintage sedan for a semi-daily driver. It doesn’t matter if your example spent some time at a salvage yard, is shifted with a 4-speed or has a fuel injected Chevy V8; these cars are sweet and cheap. Find this 1973 Mercedes-Benz 280 SEL 4.5 W108 for sale in Calabasas, CA for $5,799 via craigslist.
This big Benz wears its original coat of paint – either Dark Red (Burgundy) or Tobacco Brown – it is hard to tell in the photos without knowing the paint code on the door sill. One thing that is certain is that the seller took a picture of it with a rock stopping it from rolling down a hill…
This W108 is powered by a 4.5 liter V8 that puts out 160 hp and 180 ft-lbs of
torque but can cost quite a few deutschmark to fix when something goes wrong…and something will always go wrong with a 41 year old luxury car. The W108 was built to a high level of engineering standards and is a fine piece of machinery that drives like a car 20 years younger…but…some thingamajig will break and cost you thousands if you go to a Benz repair shop, but the smart DIY mechanic will just dive in and fix things with his own tool.
This W108 is equipped with Mercedes 4-speed automatic gearbox and is shifted from the column – which is fine for an automatic transmission and for the life of me I can’t figure out why almost every slushbox equipped car on the market today has a floor mounted shifter. The column shifter is perfectly functional and opens up the floor space for your ipod/phone/trenti-mocha-frap sized cup holder, etc.