There’s been a surprising lack of W108/W109 S class Mercedes-Benzes on this site lately, so I decided to search for a clean, affordable example. The car we see here, a short wheelbase W108 is an interesting mix of the classic and modern. Classic in the vehicle’s appearance and modern in what’s under the hood. The 4.5 signified the arrival of the new M117 SOHC V8 that would go on to power a generation of S and SL models. Offered only in the USA, as opposed the 3.5 liter, M116 version.
While prices of the coupes and cabriolets have skyrocketed, sedans have stayed reasonable. Clean, unmolested examples are plentiful for under $15,000. Here is a nice one located up in Massachusetts:
The 280 is a magnificent looking car. This example of the 280 SE is in very good condition having been cared for over the years. The big 4.5 Liter V8 engine has hardly seen much action having run an average 2-3K miles per year since being put into service. This car with 78,000 original miles will put a smile on your face as soon as you sit in it. Runs perfectly, needs some minor cosmetic fixes and the AC needs to be charged or converted.
If I had the space, I’d love to have one of these old S classes in my stable. I remember being at a Mercedes-Benz club meet at MB Headquarters in New Jersey and a guy from Maine had an impeccable 1967 250S sedan with a four speed manual on the floor in a stunning non-metallic gray with red interior. I would have given anything just to take it out for a test drive. It brings back memories of my grandfather’s 1971 280SE and my dad’s 1967 230S fintail. These are timeless cars that are amazingly modern and are the epitome of the “practical classic” genre.