1957 MERCEDES-BENZ 220S CABRIOLET
Chassis No. 1800307502821
Silver with red leather interior
Engine: six cylinder, 2,195cc, 106bhp at 5,200rpm; Gearbox: four speed manual; Suspension: independent all around; Brakes: power assisted drums. Left hand drive.
The 220S Mercedes-Benz was introduced at the Frankfurt Auto Show in April 1956 and was the first model from this famous manufacturer to have a unitary construction bodyshell. It succeeded the 220 model of 1951 with its traditional tubular chassis frame but it did share some of its mechanical specification. A four door saloon was initially only available, the cabriolet and two door coupe models not appearing until July 1956. They all shared the same bodystyle with slab-sided, smooth coachwork with rounded roof, plenty of chrome and the distinctive large radiator grill.
Mechanically the 220S was very innovative, its new 2.2 liter six cylinder overhead camshaft engine survived unchanged into the 1970s. With twin Solex carburettors producing around 100bhp, the 220S was capable of speeds of 100mph with acceleration to match. They came in either automatic or a fully synchronized gearbox with column mounted shift. The drum brakes were servo assisted and suspension was independent all around. The interior was more elegant and more luxurious than its predecessor. The range was marketed as a comfortable family car yet with the performance of a lively sports model. In July 1959 the production of the saloon ended but the coupe and cabriolet models continued until October the same year. In total, only 2,178 cabriolets were built.
This delightful 220S Cabriolet was purchased by the current owner in January 1989 from a collector in San Jose, California. The current owner researched the car's history and came across Mr. Rotto, a prior owner who was able to provide ownership records back to the early 1970s. Prior to 1972, the 220S was owned by three separate US Army officers stationed in Germany. Sometime before 1982, documents show that the engine was replaced with another Mercedes 220S unit.
The prior owner did the majority of the restoration including re-chroming, re-upholstering the interior red leather, new silver paint repair, rebuilding the engine, drive train and suspension. The current owner has added the final touches to the car to ensure its originality. The car has received numerous awards throughout the 1980s and 1990s, some of the most recent being: 1. the Mercedes-Benz Club of America-Central Florida Section, Concours d'Elegance, Martland, Florida in April 1995 were the car won the "Peoples' Choice" and "Best of Show" award, 2. a "First Place" at the Mercedes-Benz Mid-Atlantic Concours d'Elegance in August 1989, 3. "Judges' Choice" at the Mercedes-Benz Club of America TRI-O-RAMA Concours d'Elegance in Hagerstown, Maryland in October 1989, 4. in March of 1997, it was awarded the "Amelia Award" in Mercedes-Benz class from 1946-1972 at the 2nd Invitational Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance in Florida. This 220S has many awards to prove its calibur and its fine condition.