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15k-Mile 1996 Mercedes-Benz SL500 US 500 Edition

Here’s a deep cut! When the IRL and CART split rocked the open-wheel racing world in the mid 1990s, CART resurrected an event to rival the Indy 500. Called the “U.S. 500″, it was run at Michigan International Raceway and brought back events that had run there from the mid 1970s through the 1980s. As Penske was one of the strongest supporters of the series, engine provider Mercedes-Benz loaned some 40 R129s to the event for use as parade cars. They were offered in three colors; red, white, and blue, and all included the SL1 Sport Package, which added AMG bodywork and 18” wheels. Also special were embroidered fender logos, floor mats, debossed “US 500”-logo headrests, and new-for-96 ESP. With only 40 of these cars produced, they are almost certainly one of the most rare modern Mercedes models:

15k-Mile 1996 Mercedes-Benz SL500 US 500 Edition on eBay

From the seller:

Vehicle Original VIN : WDBFA67F4TF137110
This is one of the rarest post-war Mercedes Benz models around. There were only 40 examples of the 1996 Mercedes-Benz SL500 US 500 Edition ever. Oh yeah! You’re looking at a low-mileage example of a seldom-seem car from one of the most prestigious marques in the world. So while you will often find good care in the world of responsible Benz owners, you can also tell there has been extra attention paid to something this special. The porcelain-like white paint, supple leather interior, and fuel-injected V8 all have the look and feel of a car that has barely done more than just parade laps every year (averaging under 575 miles annually.) So dig into the details of a rare and luxurious classic that is surprisingly obtainable.


*1 of 40 US 500 Editions ever
*Special fender logos and floor mats
*US 500 Edition commemorative packet
*Paint, interior, engine, and all fundamentals appear original and preserved
*Desirable SL1 Sport package
-AMG full body kit
–Upgraded light setup
–18-inch AMG Monoblock alloy wheels
*Two roofs: black folding soft top and color-matched hardtop
*Luxurious gray leather interior
*Power everything: seats, roof, windows, locks, mirrors, and steering
*Modern safety with dual airbags, side airbags, and ABS
*Premium factory AM/FM/cassette stereo
*Automatic A/C climate control
*5.0-liter V8 is a fuel-injected 32-valve DOHC V8
*Five-speed automatic transmission
*Four-wheel power disc brakes
*Multi-link fully independent suspension

The US 500 Edition may only be distinguished by its fender badges and its carpeting, but its significance is amazing. The 40 special edition cars were all used as parade vehicles as part of IndyCar’s U.S. 500 (CART’s version of the Indy 500.) So these are a small part of a unique time in American motor racing history. It’s a terrific story to tell especially when you combine it with tidbits like how a 300 SL gullwing alloy-body is only slightly rarer than this. And it’s this uniqueness combined with great care, loaded features, and sporty AMG details that keep this car a cut above. So what you’re looking at is the affordable way to get a Benz of double-digit rarity and lavish distinction. That’s why we know this deal will be moving fast. Call today!!!

This one seems to be missing its logo floor mats, but otherwise is in great shape. The Polar White/gray combination isn’t the one I would choose, personally, but it all looks to be in good shape.

Downsides? The $40k+ asking price gets you into either a much newer SL with more creature comforts and power, or into a less exclusive but neater SL600. I’d take the latter, personally.


One Comment

  1. Sequential
    Sequential December 19, 2023

    Give me a SL 55 AMG for that kind of money a way better car

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