1968 Mercedes-Benz 600

A few days ago I was talking with a friend who owns and operates a Mercedes-Benz restoration shop and the topic of the W100 600 came up. It was mostly me asking all kind of questions as to what it is like to own one of these cars and getting answers that blew my mind. One thing stuck out that about stopped me in my tracks. He told me that a 600 he services for a doctor had to choose between doing some repairs on his car or putting a new roof on his house. It was at that moment I realized I was never going to own a 600 nor want to own a 600. Our conversation then turned to the cost-per-mile calculation to own one of these and he threw out the number of roughly $5. Most exotics usually average about $3.50 a mile. That means if you own a 600 and drive it a conservative 2,000 miles a year, you can expect your wallet to be $10,000 lighter. To think, some people still don’t understand that this just isn’t another old Mercedes that has some pricey parts on it. I’ve said this before and I want to say it again, there is no faking owning a 600. The amount of time and money needed to keep one of these probably surpasses some short-lived marriages.

Anytime a 600 pops up for sale, I always hurry to take a look because of the crazy options that could be lurking inside as well as the possibility of it being owned by a celebrity and/or murderous dictator. Today’s 600, a 1968 up for sale in Chicago, probably didn’t have any executions called in from the rear seat because it wasn’t owned by someone of that ilk and this car is equipped with a rear refrigerator, not a telephone. This 600 was actually first ordered and owned by a man named Don Ricardo. Ricardo was a NBC Orchestra conductor but real passion was cars — especially Mercedes-Benz. Ricardo owned two 300SL Gullwings, a 1928 SSK and one of the most infamous Mercedes of all-time, a 1935 roadster custom-built for Nazi Gestapo chief Heinrich Himmler. I assume this car was a 770. Anyway, safe to say that Ricardo liked his cars and knew exactly what he was buying in this 600. From there, details on this W100 are slim but thanks to the power of the internet, I was able to uncover a little more about this Grosse.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1968 Mercedes-Benz 600 on eBay

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1972 Mercedes-Benz 600

The Mercedes-Benz 600 is one of the few cars that I’d love to own but at the same time be absolutely terrified of actually owning it. There is no “faking” ownership of a 600. You need to be totally unfazed about the possibility of spending $8,000 for a minor service at any time. A set of factory brake pads alone will run you over $1,000, although most owners just use the thinner W109 6.3 pads as “affordable” alternatives. If a 600 needs chassis rubber replacement, it’s not out the question for it to be over $20,000 in parts alone. Suddenly, you become envious of Ferrari 348 and 355 owners that only spend $10,000 on engine-out services. So when a 600 comes up for sale like this one in Alabama, I dream of scooping this thing up, but then think maybe spending $12,000 to make sure a 600 can sit in my garage without the body touching the ground isn’t the best use of money.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1972 Mercedes-Benz 600 on eBay

Year: 1972
Model: 600
Engine: 6.3 liter V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 66,081 mi
Price: Buy It Now $90,000

1972 Mercedes 600 4 door Automatic V8. Hydraulic windows & locks. Kept in air controlled shop.

This 1972 is car number 2109 out of the 2677 W100’s ever built and it is the last year for the 600 in the US making it quite rare. The Horizon Blue paint isn’t a color I see too often and the grey interior looks to be in fine shape outside of the random clothes hanger in the rear seats. Being a southern car with a little over 66,000 miles, I don’t see any obvious signs of wear outside of the fading wood that the seller mentions in the description.

Speaking of the description, this is a fine example of how not to sell a 600. Judging by the setting of this car, the owner probably has more important things to worry about so maybe putting effort into selling this beautiful car wasn’t a priority. Buying a 600 isn’t your standard process of checking it out for an hour on a Saturday afternoon. Ideally you put this car trailer, send it off for to a 600 specialist for a few days then wait for bad news to come back at how much work it’ll need. Even trying to start a 600 that has been sitting for awhile can lead to catastrophic results as you have to potential to send contaminates into the very expensive injection pump.

For $90,000, you can’t even consider that number unless you get a full report on this car like mentioned. Gambling any kind of money on buying a 600 sight-unseen or without an experts report on it would be crazy. Personally, I prefer the pre-1968 600’s because of the wood binnacle instead of the leather covered one like this car. In my eyes, if you are going to buy a 600, you might as well go all out with it because you’ll be paying either way. So if you are searching for a 600, this one might be an option, as long as you do the homework.

– Andrew