1961 Mercedes-Benz 300 d `Adenauer` Convertible SOLD

Spectacularly Original Low-Mileage Injected Convertible, 1 of 65 Built

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Despite the depressed state of postwar Germany`s economy, Mercedes was able to produce a luxury car of the highest caliber during the 1950`s. In the same vein as the 770 `Gro▀er` that preceded it or the 600 that succeeded it, the 300 series was a world-class limousine that successfully incorporated a blend of opulence, exclusivity, irreproachable build quality, sophisticated technological features, and surprising performance. They were extraordinarily expensive when new (three times as much as a Cadillac) and in spite of the contemporary unpopularity of all things German in the international community, these cars were able to transcend prejudices because of their inherent superiority. They brought incredible presence, yet were also quite understated, especially when compared to the more ostentatious offerings from Rolls-Royce and Cadillac. Their austere and commanding presence made them perfect for official use by high officials in the German government, including Chancellor Konrad Adenauer, whose name will always be intimately associated with these impressive cars, and who used no fewer than six of these cars. The cars found a distinguished clientele who appreciated the exclusivity and outstanding quality of the cars, and perhaps even their 100mph plus performance.

The cars themselves continuously developed over their eleven year production, and a number of advanced technological features were incorporated, including automatic transmission, fuel injection, hydraulic brakes, and even central locking. There was also a convertible version, which was considerably more expensive (forty percent more!) and is accordingly much rarer. By 1957, when the car was also significantly updated, the convertible version had been removed from official listings and was instead available by special order only. With such a high price and availability that was somewhat mysterious, convertible versions of these late cars are extremely rare, and just 65 were built. It appears that most convertibles were ordered for use by various governments, however, at least a few were ordered by private individuals.

This particular example is one such car and is quite probably the finest most original unrestored example in existence. It is a completely unrepeatable find with one owner from new until 2006, and just 12,055 original miles. It is highly original in all respects and has been beautifully preserved. The car is highly complete and correct and comes with tonneau cover in the original canvas bag, full tool roll with tools, jack, lug wrench, and the full manual pack containing owner`s manual, parts book, service booklets (complete with all removable service stickers except of the 12,000 mile sticker which is affixed to the a-post of the car), amendment supplement, preparation certificate, dealer directory, and various documents relating to the Becker Mexico radio and Hirschmann antenna.

The car is in breathtaking original condition. Every detail is spectacularly well-preserved and beautiful. The car has been correctly stored so that it is not only original, but also nearly unworn condition. The paintwork, chrome, wood, and leather are all in remarkable almost new condition. The paintwork shows a minimum of wear in the form of a few chips and scratches, and a handful of small dents, as would be expected on a 12,000 mile car. The paint shows light patina and is not too glossy, which is to be expected given contemporary paint technology. The chrome shows almost imperceptible pitting and scratching but is on the whole beautiful. The lights, lenses, and glass are excellent. The body panels fit is of course exemplary, as would be expected from Mercedes` legendary build quality. The fully lined top fits superbly as well, though it is showing very minor shrinkage and fading, and the rear window has yellowed some.

The interior is in equally beautiful condition. The leather is still supple and is free from cracks or wear. Even the pull handles on the door pockets are completely intact and free from wear. The quality of the hardware and the operation of the controls are nothing short of awe-inspiring, and it really reflects the old-world craftsmanship that was present in this, the last of the truly handmade flagship separate frame cars. Everything still works smoothly, despite its age, even the Becker Mexico radio and electric aerial. The wood shows very light cracking to the finish, but remains lustrous and unwarped. The carpets are almost unworn, with one small hole near the accelerator pedal. The rubber sill plates are cracked in several places, and the remaining rubber about the car shows wear in some places, but is excellent in others. The back seats are cavernous and very comfortable, and even the elastic on the seatback pockets functions as new.

If a trunk could be described as stunning, this would be it. It shows no discernable wear at all, from the pristine rubber mats to the unused Bilstein jack to the unmarked vinyl upholstery. The inside of the trunk lid shows flawless black paint and the hardware for the spare tire strap looks nothing short of brand new.

The engine compartment is unrestored but very clean and minimally worn. The original decals are still present and there is evidence of some recent work, including a new VDO washer tank.

As would be expected, the car drives superbly. There is no discernible wear to any mechanical components, and despite its large size, it handles capably. It corners at speeds that would at first seem inadvisable with remarkable composure, but is of course more at home wafting effortlessly.

This is a unique opportunity to acquire a car that is genuinely unrepeatable. In addition to being completely original, the car has been superbly preserved and is an extremely low mileage one-owner car that has always been in the United States. The car is also late model 300, which means it has a number of updates that further increase its appeal and usability when compared to earlier cars. The extreme rarity of this car, along with its marvelous detailing, quality, and historical significance make it a collector car of the highest caliber, one that is sure to impress those who can appreciate its exceptional qualities.

Reference Number 11065

as of 7/11/2007

Car 1961 Mercedes-Benz 300 d `Adenauer` Convertible
VIN 189033-12-002537 
Small Series  1 of 65 
Exterior / Interior Color Horizon Blue /      Black  
Mileage 12,055 miles 
Configuration Left Hand Drive (LHD) 
Transmission Automatic 
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