1997 Mercedes-Benz SL600

While the AMG lineup has taken Mercedes-Benz by storm over the past decade, lost in the cracks are the more pedestrian, yet equally special non-AMG V12 models. Fancy an SL with V12 power for Honda Civic money? Well, here’s your chance, although beware, because obviously a car like this won’t come with Civic-esque servicing costs.

The seller states:

1997 Mercedes-Benz 600SL Roadster. This is a sale by a private individual with the assistance of an agent. I will present (without bias) all realistic and reasonable offers to the seller.

Serial number: WDBFA76F8UF146015

36,721 original miles

Smoke Silver exterior (702 factory paint code)

Parchment Leather (565 factory interior color code)

Please see detailed photo below for list of options with factory codes

100% original paint

Perfect paint, no scratches or dings anywhere

100% original interior ~ no redye or aftermarket anything

Perfect interior ~ zero blemishes, zero.

Perfect leather, perfect carpet.

Serviced by Mercedes-Benz Dealership…not anywhere else

Meticulously maintained

Full factory books, owners manual, and stamped service booklet in factory pouch.

Perfect windshield, no chips

Perfect alloy wheels, no discoloration, no curb rash.

Both tops ~ hard and soft are perfect.

Original window sticker included.

The car drives perfect. The steering wheel is absolutely dead straight when the car is going straight. An amazing car. It is difficult to keep a 1997 looking this good. I congratulate the seller.

Low mileage R107 SLs aren’t that uncommon, but according to the Standard Catalog of Mercedes-Benz, there were only 738 SL600s produced in 1997. While the horsepower difference from the V8 to V12 is not entirely great, those who have driven them say that V12s bring a whole new level of smoothness to the driving experience. If you have the means and the resources to keep one of these classics on the road (tune ups are not going to be cheap), this is a relatively affordable way into a clean future classic.…

1997 Brabus E65 W210 For Sale in California

John emailed me a few days ago to inform us that his wonderful and amazing Brabus E65 was on eBay. I fell sick on Wednesday and am just now catching up. But don’t let that delay you — as of right now, there is only 2 days left on his auction.

His ad tells the story well, so without further ado:

This is a full W210 Brabus car; one of one in USA. Built in 1997 from a brand new, zero-mile E420 purchased from Beverly Hills MB. Car was completely disassembled and shipped to Brabus Germany where the M119 motor was enlarged to 6.5 liters. It is a 450hp / 488 ft lb. torque motor (4 cam / 32 valve). This is the only official USA W210 6.5 in existence. Car was fully optioned when it was built. This includes full Brabus power-train, Brabus (Alcon) ft and rr brakes, Brabus full exhaust, Brabus full body kit, Brabus staggered modular wheels, Brabus Mastik leather interior, Brabus hood / trunk badging and trunk lettering, Brabus springs / shocks, Brabus door sills in stainless, Brabus steering wheel etc.

Car has roughly 40,900 original miles and is in excellent condition in all respects. Car is 040 black non-metallic with Black and contrasting Gray interior. There is a large integrated stereo that is aftermarket but period 1997-98. Car was featured in Motor Trend and an original copy of the magazine is included. This car was built at the time to be the fastest sedan in existence. It held this title in the USA as it is capable of 192mph. The only sedan to surpass this M119 6.5 is the Brabus W210 7.3 V-12 (206mph); none of which were imported to the States as they do not comply with USA crash and emissions standards.

1997 BMW 328i Sport with 24,000 miles

This find comes in from reader Peter.

We’ve seen that low mile BMWs command a high price, that is no surprise. What is interesting though is we’ve found often the case with these low mile cars is that it is not only collectors buying them for a potential weekend ride or investment car, its just as frequently someone who wants to make the car their daily driver. The daily driver folks may prefer an older model because it has less electronic gizmos or they may just really like the familiarity of a model they have owned for years and don’t want to move to something newer. They figure if they are going to take the car to work everyday why not get the lowest mile one you can find.

This 328i looks almost showroom fresh. The previous owner sure didn’t get much out of their purchase. The dollar cost average of buying $38,705 car and only driving it 24,000 isn’t great. The depreciation though should look really appealing to the next owner.

Finished in shiny red, all original, and apparently only on the road when it is dry, this car is begging to see some of the country.

While the car has the sports package this is a bit of a misnomer since it does have the autobox transmission. All the things you like to see with a low mile car are there, including all the tools in the tool kit and immaculate interior, even the cell phone in the console, plus the seller has the original window sticker. The only ugly thing about is the dealer logo emblem on the trunk lid.

Sure it isn’t an M3 or M5, but here you have a car that still looks modern, that was built well, and with four doors can carry plenty of people or stuff reliably for years.…

Supercharged 1997 BMW 318ti for sale

I don’t think I’m alone in saying that I’ve never given the BMW E36/5 318ti a second glance, let alone any respect.  Kind of the predecessor to the 1-series, it was BMW’s unique (eschewing more common derisive descriptors) rear-wheel drive compact, the only of its genre in North America.  MSRP’d below $20k, it was definitely an economy-BMW, and this association along with it’s slightly awkward profile kept it from being taken very seriously and it never sold well.

Today, however, I found one on Craigslist that has me questioning my dismissal of the baby Bimmer.

Supercharged 1997 BMW 318ti for sale on Craigslist

Not only does this beautiful white 1997 version have the sport package, it’s been upgraded with a very clean Eaton supercharger installation.  That has to make some positive steps towards discarding the frumpy reputation, as well as the M3-style front fascia and the very, very well-chosen 17-inch BBS RKs.  The M-accented cloth seats are decidedly 90s, but that’s ok and the rest of the interior is clean and sporty.  The proportions will always be funky on this car, but the aforementioned upgrades along with a trunklid spoiler and M3 mirrors really suit it and make you think how tossable that short wheelbase must be.  For sale just under $9k, 165k miles seems like a bit, especially with a boosted engine.  That said, it looks extremely well cared-for, and is probably a ton of fun for under ten grand.

For the first time, I’m finding myself giving a 318ti a long, desirous look.


1997 Mercedes SL74 Renntech Monster 17k miles

While Mercedes and its associated high end tuners went through a stage recently of getting huge horsepower numbers from supercharged and turbo cars, there is something to be said for pure normally aspirated big block power. This Renntech modified SL74 epitomizes that philosophy. The stock 6.0 liter 48 valve V-12 engine has been bumped out to 452 cubic inches and is generating 575 horsepower and 600 lb. ft. of torque. The power is mated to a five speed automatic that has been beefed up to handle the power. Worked over intake, uprated suspension and cooling systems, 14″ Alcon brakes, 18” OZ Racing wheels( 18” x 11.5” out back), and AMG bodyparts. Plus you get all the luxury interior components you would expect from a top of the line Benz of that era. The seller says he whole package cost $90,000 from Renntech when it was new.
All that huge no lag power must be an real blast. The car is hardly broken in with only 17,000 miles. The car looks like it came from Canada since I see Manitoba plates in one of the photos. For $79,000 you can go pick this car up in Dallas Texas and have a fun comfortable ride home anywhere in the country.
Lots more pictures and description from the seller are on his site.

1997 Mercedes SL74 for sale on private site

Also on Dallas Craigslist


BMW SCCA racer #2 1997 BMW 318i

As promised here is part two of my SCCA BMW racer finds. This one is a newer 1997 BMW 318i.
Very similar specs to my previous BMW racer post. Exhaust, short shift kit, adjustable shocks, and safety equipment. Unlike my previous post though t his one does not come with any log books, which is too bad.

It is another chance to get an entry level car for fairly cheap. Seller is looking for $10,500. They don’t give much info about how many races are on the engine, etc., which would be important to find out before buying.