SLSHOP is often the Mercedes Benz specialist of choice for owners residing outside of the UK; we frequently find that the tight-knit nature of the Mercedes community spurs owners to send us their cars in large volumes. Most of the time, these owners are friends or a part of a local car club and have significant plans for their vehicle restoration, while some simply want an expert to service their car annually before utilising their vehicle for the summer.
A FATHER AND SON DUO WITH THE SAME OBJECTIVE
This 560 SL arrived at SLSHOP with a slightly different back-story. If you regularly read our online Journal content hub, you may have come across a V12 R129 SL600 which was imported from America sight-unseen. This SL can be read about here, where you will learn that the owner’s love affair with the R129 emerged as a child thanks to his father. The father happens to be the owner of this R107 560 SL, which he has also imported from America and sent straight to SLSHOP for minor restoration and servicing work. We’re proud to be the Mercedes Benz specialist of choice for this father-son partnership.
ABOUT THE 560 SL
The R107s final facelift took place in 1985, with the 560 SL replacing the 380 SL in North America, Japan, and Australia. This offering was intended to counteract the difference in power between European and US specifications, which had caused some negative sentiment towards the model since its launch. So much so, that a parallel import network emerged in the US to give owners access to European specification 500SLs which had more power than the US available models. The 560 SL was a response to this activity and would offer 72bhp more than the North American-spec 380 SL and 12bhp than a 500 SL with the same equipment and emissions.
Of the 149,218 R107 units sold to the US, 46,263 units were the 560 SL, making this the second most popular model on the continent. This choice of car makes it a very special addition to the roads in the UK, and given its condition, we expect to be servicing this car for another 50,000 miles.
SPECIALIST MERCEDES BENZ SERVICING AND RESTORATION WORK:
A low mileage 560 SL represents an exciting opportunity, but one should not assume that there won’t be any remedial work required. The 560 SL shows only 23,423 miles on the odometer and while this figure is low, a rarely used SL can sometimes be as troublesome as something we higher mileage.
As a Mercedes Benz specialist, we always recommend owners put their vehicle through our Vehicle Health Check. This comprehensive 300-point report covers everything from the mechanicals to the interior cosmetics; is carried out on the road and our workshop’s ramps. Once the 560 SL had been through this process, we established a course of action for the car and presented the owners with a list of essential works to be carried out.
This report allows owners to prioritise work according to their budget, and in this case, the owner has proceeded to refine his newly acquired 560 SL to almost-new levels. Works included locating the source of an oil leak, quickly attributed to the PAS system, as well as flushing the brake system, replacing front subframe bushes and shock absorbers. A key focus was an intermittent kick down, which was thumping when shifting into a lower gear. This has been adjusted by our R107 Mercedes specialists to ensure smooth downward shifts. Other structural considerations include the cleaning of the rear deck drain holes – a common location for blockages on the R107 SL. This will secure the 560 SL against rust in the future.
Cosmetic improvements include conversion of the twin headlights to have sidelights to the rear, cleaning and refitting the fog lights, fitting new speakers inside and removing the old US-style phone system and associated wiring. The windows have also been adjusted to ensure the soft and hard tops sit correctly, while the aftermarket system has been investigated to ensure it works effectively.
This is just a snapshot of the works carried out on the 560 SL to ensure it is ready for use here in the UK. While the owner has decided to keep the vehicle’s US bumper specification, the car will remain in the UK and SLSHOP will complete all the relevant registration documentation. This is a lovely looking 560 SL in the revered combination of Signal Red and Cream Leather – a striking aesthetic set to spruce-up British roads. We look forward to seeing the pair carving their way through the Cotswolds this summer.
IMPORTING A CAR TO A MERCEDES BENZ SPECIALIST?
Considering importing a car from the US? Or have you already invested in a UK vehicle and require servicing and maintenance work? SLSHOP is the world’s leading Mercedes specialist with the facilities to carry out major and minor work, giving you confidence in your vehicle’s financial and mechanical strength. We can collect your vehicle from you and return it to you once it is ready.