You learn something new every day: Desert Taupe is a completely unknown color to me, at least until I stumbled upon this eBay listing for a clean 1989 Mercedes-Benz 300CE coupe. I have a hard time distinguishing it from similar colors with demographic-friendly names like “Tan” and “Beach Party Moonlight” (think Volvo 240 and Scion tC owners, respectively), but the seller claims it’s a shade different enough that it’s considered quite rare. Color aside, this W124 looks well-maintained and the later polished alloys are a nice visual upgrade – now, it just needs a set of H&Rs to settle down that monster-truck stance.
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Pulling together enough legendary names to nearly create it’s own “Justice League”, the Mercedes-Benz 500E saw the combination of two of the most storied names in German automobiles – Porsche and Daimler-Benz. The 500E was sure a serious car out of the box with 320 horsepower and torque to match; but for some, that wasn’t enough. For those enterprising individuals with deep pockets, their Stuttgart superhero saw the introduction of a third legendary name; AMG. AMG had been placing larger displacement engines in Benz models for years, and the 500E proved no different. It even became an official product since Daimler owned a major stake in AMG; the merger would see a new range of high performance out of the box Mercedes models like the SL60 and E60. With a 50 horsepower boost in horsepower and 75 more lb.ft of torque, the 6.0 brought the 500E to another level of performance, chopping nearly a second off its 0-60 times and giving close to Porsche 911 Turbo levels of straight line performance. But while the E60 and SL60 models are pretty rare, it was more common to do what this owner did – ship the car to AMG for a motor swap after purchase:
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1994 Mercedes-Benz 500E 6.0 AMG on Classic Driver
It seemed to be it was easier to keep up with vehicle changes year on year, mainly because there were less models populating manufacturer portfolios. As much as a petrolhead as I am, I can’t keep up with all the new model variants cropping up. Many seem to be a mashup of existing models meant to exploit every little automotive niche that might exist. But in reality, they are just variations on a particular modular platform. I still look back longingly to the days when the Mercedes-Benz lineup consisted of mainly the C, E, S and SL classes. It was simpler times and cars like this final year W124 E320 Cabriolet contained much of the DNA that made these cars popular with the monied set. This example for sale in Denver is a one owner car, showing under 50,000 miles on the clock.
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1995 Mercedes-Benz E320 Cabriolet on eBay
The Mercedes-Benz 500E is one of those cars that was fairly affordable for a long time, but dwindling supply and greater awareness has raised values considerably. I knew it was a matter of time before this legend started to increase in value. We often see these four-door hot rods with Porsche DNA in black or silver, but this metallic blue example for sale in Florida bucks that trend. This car is closing in on 150,000 miles but has had the same owner for the last 18 years.