It’s the summer. The UK is reaching new record temperature highs not before experienced by this small European island. The temperatures are set to peak at 38 degrees in mid-July – the equivalent temperature of areas in southern Spain and North Africa. It is these conditions that tend to positively reinforce an owners’ decision to purchase a classic Mercedes SL; often, it is the catalyst for aspiring owners to bite the bullet and invest. But the question remains… Which classic Mercedes SL does one buy?
There’s an abundance of cars available, all-in varying colour combinations, different engine sizes and with varying levels of maintenance history. Amongst all this is the era of car. Do you opt for a classic Mercedes SL Pagoda or a classic Mercedes R107 SL? Perhaps your budget only stretches as for as a R107 and if this is the case, you are in an exceptionally good position. This position is one that allows you to choose from an array of superbly spec’d cars with luxury touring qualities and conveniences available in most modern cars – cruise control, heated seats and even air con.
For the purposes of this article, we will be suggesting that with the changes in temperature here in the UK, the classic Mercedes SL to buy is one with air conditioning. Now these are harder to find in the UK, given that this was an optional extra costing almost £2,000 in 1989. The equivalent in today’s money is over £6,000 when adjusted for inflation. So, given the rise in temperatures and your budget, what could you find yourself driving around in this summer?
- Mercedes-Benz 420 SL with one owner from new #2380
The 420 SL is a fine machine that blends the refinement of the 300 SL with the muscle-car grunt of the 500 SL. The 420 SL features the last incarnation of the M116 engine and is on the tame side of the 500 SL, which appeals more to those with a fondness for the raucous V8 sound track. This 420 SL has been owned by one family since it was originally ordered in 1986 and as such makes for a very special prospect.
In 1986, the keeper ticked a majority of the optional extras, including air conditioning. This is a fine machine with a lovely Beige Leather (275) complete with all the trimmings such as an outside temperature gauge (optional), rear seats and more. Most of all, you’ll be able to enjoy the top down with cooling air at the switch of a button.
SEE THIS 420 SL
- Concours winning Classic Mercedes 500 SL
In 2016, this 500 SL made headlines with thanks to Sales Director, Bruce Greethams concours winning title awarded at the highest level of Mercedes-Benz concours competitions in the UK. This 500 SL was certainly worthy of the title having been painstakingly restored by Bruce and members of SLSHOP’s team over two years.
As a 500 SL goes, this is the one everyone wants. It pairs Nautical Blue (929) with Beige Leather (275) – a beautiful combination that blends in with the Mediterranean weather we are experiencing at present. From factory, this 500 SL was ordered with almost every extra. In addition to air conditioning, the 500 SL features heated seats (£1,000 extra in today’s money), rear seats, anti-theft alarm, an outside temperature gauge, leather all round and more.
This is possibly one of the highest specification 500 SLs available on the market and inimitable given its concours credentials.
SEE THE CONCOURS WINNER
- Classic Mercedes 560 SL to Buy in the UK
We’re not often custodians of a 560 SL. These vehicles are regularly imported to the UK but it is not often you find them with Euro specification bumpers. The reasons for this are generally down to the cost of the conversion and the expertise needed to replace the bumpers without damaging the front panels. Usually, you’d expect to see the US headlamps replaced with Euro specification, but this isn’t the case with this example which gives it a bit more character we think.
Finished in Blue-Black Metallic (199), the darker exterior looks fabulously refined and brought to life by the contrasting Palomino Leather (274). The 560 SL was the highest specification R107 offered by Mercedes-Benz and only offered to US, Japan and Australian enthusiasts at the time. In addition to automatic climate control, this 560 SL features an air bag, anti-theft system and the folding arm rest not found on European models.
All in all this is a fantastic ‘late’ R107 560 SL with extremely low mileage, inspected and certified by SLSHOP and ready to be driven in the sun.
VIEW THIS 560 SL
- Internationally Revered 420 SL
In 2021, this 420 SL made the front cover of Classic Cars Magazine following an 18 month long restoration that started just before the Coronavirus Pandemic. Over the course of this time, the vehicle was completely restored to pay homage to the former owner who was unable to finish the work due to ill health.
READ THE STORY HERE.
In Anthracite Grey (172) and Beige Leather (272) this 420 SL is a work of art and perhaps the only one of just 2500 made that exist in this condition today. SLSHOP’s craftsmen spent months perfecting every panel gap, every stitch of the leather upholstery and mile after mile out on the road to ensure the powertrain was ‘as new.’
This is another high-specification 420 SL featuring air conditioning – the same air conditioning it was born with but revived and certified by our team. We’ve brought this 420 SL to a condition that far exceeds the original.
SEE FOR YOURSELF
- Signal Red Classic Mercedes 300 SL to Buy
We’ve introduced to the V8s, but for those that prefer something a little more economical and refined in tone and drive, this 300 SL is the one to have on these hot days. You’ll spend less time at the petrol station in this example and more time out on the road enjoying the sweet coolness of the air conditioning.
Finished in the iconic Signal Red (568) and paired with Beige Leather (275), this 300 SL has come to the market following very little use by former keepers. The odometer stands at around 60,000 and the vehicle has been cared for SLSHOP for the past few years. The original owner specified air conditioning, rear seats, leather, and cruise control as optional extras, perfect for summer grand touring.
SEE THIS 300 SL