Two owners from new
1971 MERCEDES-BENZ 280SE 3.5 CABRIOLET
Chassis No. 1102712003694
Dark brown with matching top and cognac leather interior
Engine: V8, 3.5 liter, 200hp at 5,800rpm, electronic fuel injection, transistorized ignition; Gearbox: column shift four-speed automatic; Suspension: front, independent coil springs, rear, joint independent swing axle, coil springs; Brakes: hydraulic discs all around. Left hand drive.
When Mercedes-Benz discontinued the 300 Cabriolet and Roadster in 1957, there was worry among Mercedes enthusiasts that there would be no 'flagship' luxury convertible to carry the three-pointed emblem other than the two-seater SLs. But this worry soon evaporated when the 220SE arrived in September 1961, a full five-seater convertible powered by a 120hp straight six. The body style was conservative and eliminated the fins of earlier 220SEs. This model gradually progressed in power and luxury until it became the 300SE in 1965 with an automatic gearbox as standard. But the ultimate luxury Mercedes was not created until 1969 when the 230SE 3.5 coupe and convertible were introduced. This model had an iron block aluminum head V8 used in the forthcoming 350SL. Mercedes did not bother to change the '280SE' designation, though the new engine was indeed a 3.5 liter V8. The 280SE 3.5 Mercedes is highly prized among Mercedes enthusiasts for its high level of luxury - the wood and the leather work are reminiscent of earlier hand-made cars. The performance is also quite remarkable for a four-to-five-seater car, with a 0-60 mph time of under 10 seconds and a top speed of 125mph. Only 1,232 genuine convertibles such as the car presented here were produced between 1969 and 1971.
This smart Mercedes-Benz cabriolet is one of the 300 originally finished in the tasteful dark brown and cognac color combination. The vendor purchased this car from its California owner in 1972 when it was barely twelve months old and has carefully maintained it since that time. We understand that the car has never seen snow or inclement weather conditions. Over the past 28 years the car is reported to have been stored in a heated garage when not in use, and when any routine maintenance was carried out it was done so by authorized Mercedes-Benz technicians. The owner reports showing this lovely 280SE at several Mercedes-Benz events where it was very well received by the judges, ultimately placing well on more than one occasion.
Factory installed items and additional options on this Cabriolet include a Becker stereo radio and tape deck, factory installed Behr air conditioning, original equipment Michelin tires, four speed automatic gearbox, disc brakes and power windows. The odometer shows just under 30,000 miles, which is believed to be correct from new. We understand that the car's overall condition is presentable, with the brightwork, paint, extensive interior woodwork and leather interior all clean and in lovely overall condition. Additionally, the car has been repainted once and features a new convertible top. This low mileage, virtual single owner example finished in the attractive dark brown and cognac color combination is indeed worthy of close attention from any Mercedes-Benz enthusiast who appreciates both luxurious comfort and ample performance.