1957 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL RoadsterSOLD
See all the Images for this Car
Mercedes Benz 300 SL Roadster

Reference Number 127387

as of 5/23/2011

Overview
Car 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster
VIN 198 042 75 00 443 
More Images
See all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this Car
See all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this Car
See all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this CarSee all the Images for this Car
See all the Images for this Car
Known History

In 1954, at the New York Motor Show Max Hoffman, unveiled two new Mercedes sports cars: the 190 SL and the 300 SL touring car. This car was adapted from the 300 SL racing car for road use and its distinguishable feature is its ?gullwing? doors. Although slightly more down to earth than the factory cars, the 300 SL remained a car for racing enthusiasts craving acceleration, its comfort having been sacrificed for efficiency. It was still very difficult to get into the car given the height of the door thresholds and this feature alone meant that distribution in the main market of the United States was limited. Mercedes-Benz still managed to sell 1,400 units in four years, but faced with a slump in demand in 1956, the carmaker bowed to pressure from America and brought out a convertible, the Roadster, which was unveiled in Geneva in March 1957. Its most distinguishable feature is the addition of conventional doors as a result of a modification to the chassis, which was also strengthened to compensate for the loss of the roof.

This splendid cabriolet is as alluring as the ?gullwing? coupÚ and is aimed at a clientele more interested in touring than performance, but the already refined engineering was further improved. The engine used was still direct fuel injection, capable of delivering 250 hp SAE, and the last roadster models from 1962-63 were fitted with aluminium block cylinders and four brake discs. Its top speed was around 230 km/h, which was more than sufficient for a touring car. Another significant alteration was the addition of a new axle to the rear suspension, still the single-pivot swing-axle, but with a lower hinge point which also provided a counterbalancing horizontal spring effect. The variations to the rear bodywork were limited and road holding when cornering became less? unpredictable shall we say!. Owing to its suitability for driving on the road, its high level of driving comfort and its timeless rare elegance, the popularity rating of the 300 SL Roadster improved constantly.

 

The car presented here was delivered new in California, San Diego, where it remained in the hands of the same family, the Hanes family, from 1957 to 2004, until it was bought directly from them by Mr. Van Amelsfoort. A demanding collector, Mr. Van Amelsfoort wanted a car with a known history and in good original condition with no trace of rust, or accidents. As shown in the photographs included in the file, in 2004 the car was in good condition.

The owner called for a full restoration of the automobile (invoices and photos are included in the car?s file). It was restored by Star Classics, a well-known Mercedes restorer in Den Bosch, Holland. The photographic record of restoration shows that the car was completely stripped bare from the tubular chassis. The engine and transmission were reviewed (invoices), the interior, the hood, and the hardtop were redone. The car is delivered in black with red interior, which was the original colour combination, and stands today in beautiful condition. It is still equipped with a number of interesting features including its two original suitcases, the completely restored hardtop, and its original radio with a Hirschmann antenna. Also accompanying the car are the American ?registration cards" in the name of the Hanes family, its five original manuals, including its rare service book, its toolkit, the original user manual, and its Dutch title. This great classic, that still has its original engine, is in superb condition after its quality restoration. It is an exceptional automobile, with well-documented history, and highly desirable extra features.