Well Cared for 2001 Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG For Sale

Randy emailed me recently with details of his low mileage E55 AMG that he’s listing for sale. What a great looking car! While we usually go with more classic and rare listings to feature on the site, I was compelled by the honesty of his email and history of ownership.

On to the pictures and details!

2001 Mercedes E55 AMG For Sale

quote from Randy’s email to me:

I have my father’s 2001 e55 for sale. He bought the car new and drove it sparingly until he died in 2004. (His other cars were a 1995 993 – which we still have with 32,000 miles on it – and a Subaru Turbo Wagon!) I got it after he died and drove it until late 2007. At that point, I got a new 2006 e55 and my Dad’s car was put in the garage. It has been driven occasionally since then.

It has approximately 49,900 miles on it. I have all service records; mine and my Dad’s.

There have been no modifications to the car. No air dams, spoilers, extra AMG badges, blue lights or huge wheels with ridiculously low profile tires, etc. It’s just as Mercedes intended it to be: subtle, yet extremely powerful.

The car runs strong; it accelerates powerfully, it stops straight. The air blows cold. The radio & trunk-mounted CD work as they are supposed to. In fact, everything (to the best of my knowledge) works, with the exception of the air bladders in the front passenger seat.

It is classic silver with two tone silver.

Defects:

1) There is a tiny scratch (not through the paint) on the right rear bumper skin.
2) Very slight “curb rash” on the right front wheel.
3) Two years ago, my wife was involved in a minor accident with the car. She pulled into an intersection and hit another car. The bumper skin was replaced and the right front fender was repainted. There was, to my knowledge, no mechanical or suspension involvement. In fact, the accident did not even break the headlights. The car was repaired and there have been no subsequent issues.

The interior is an attractive (but not pimpy) two tone black & light gray. It looks and smells new. The seats show no wear, the carpets are in great shape, the headliner is clean, the sunshades work well, etc. Neither my Dad nor I smoked in the car.

Asking $19000

Please contact Randy at this email address for further inquiry: randy@wileinterests.com

I hope this car finds a home that will care for it as well as Randy’s family has. Good luck with the sale!

dc

1984 Mercedes 500SEL AMG

Here is something a bit unique. The pictures are nice, but the seller provides no description at all. Note to car people if you are selling a car and want to get people to offer you good money, describe your vehicle.

You occasionally see Benzs like this that have had a tough life and get moved to a new owner who a decade after the car was built tries to bolt on cheap body parts to make an AMG look car. This one appears to have been given the AMG treatment early on. Though the AMG front fender badges have the new AMG logo that would not have been contemporary with the car.

The car does have genuine AMG body parts, the trunk spoiler in particular is a fairly unique item. The car also has tailight filler spacers on each side of the rear license plate. These red parts that match the ridges of the tailights are not stock. The wheels appear to be genuine period correct AMG spec Ronal parts. Though they are missing AMG center caps.

The addition of a 5.0 badge on the right of the trunk makes me wonder if AMG did any engine work. Why advertise that it was 5.0 unless it was special? Mercedes only distinguished engine size with numbers on the right when they were different from the engine size given in the model number. (190E 2.6, 280SE 3.5, 300SEL 6.3, etc.) This is not a standard part for a U.S. 500SEL. To my knowledge it was only used on the 450SLC 5.0, standard, from the factory.

The velour interior, combined with the euro headlights, along with the VIN show this to be a Euro car.

If you are a Benz enthusiast and have never tried the online VIN decoder it is a must see.

If I can drag some more info out of the seller I’ll post it here.

Seeing this Benz in white roll by in the mid 80s truly would’ve said big pimpin’ to me. I love the sturdy look of this era S class.

~Evan

Fleet of Vintage Porsche racers & street cars

Newcomer to eBay, but not to the business, Club Carrera Motors has an entire fleet of Porsche vintage racers now available for you on eBay.

A couple racers, including a 56 speedster that raced from day 1, some build up race cars, and a few street cars. They look good and have plenty of pictures and info in their listings. Prices are a bit high. If you want to have an instant race team for SCCA, SVRA, HSR, etc., I bet you could get yourself a deal if you bought them all.

From high to low price wise:

1962 Porsche 356

1961 Porsche 911T
1962 Porsche 356 racer

1961 Porsche 356 racer

1960 Porsche roadster

1956 Porsche speedster

Now just pick up to take them with you to the track. Hey it is Mercedes powered so it is German.

freightliner

~Evan

The 280SE 3.5 and its siblings, value added.

Rarity and classic lines can make prices of some vehicles sky-rocket. When most people think of ultra expensive vintage Mercedes the 300SL gullwing springs instantly to mind or they may think of really old models like the 540K. The previously sleeping beauty of vintage Mercedes in my mind is the 1971 280SE 3.5. Several years ago these cars could be had for far less than their almost unbelievable $100,000 to $200,000 sale prices the cabriolets now bring.

With the 28SE, opposite the gullwing, the cabrio is far more valuable than the hard top coupe. So right now non-convertible 280SE 3.5s can be had at a small fraction of the cost. You still can have all the classic lines and purchase a car that, in my mind, is a fantastic investment. Just don’t by a hard top with the intention of turning it into a convertible, that sort of shenanigans frowned upon. Beware of nice looking outsides with scary rusty under body.

The 108 coupe body style could be had as a 250SE, 2.5 liter inline 6, 280SE, 2.8 liter inline 6, or 280SE 3.5, 3.5 liter V8. Just over 1000 of the 3.5 cabrios were made and all 280 3.5 models combined totaled less than 5000 during their run.

The similar 112 chassis 300SE is also a place to look if this design appeals to you, but the price of the 3.5 does not.

Here are a couple of nice no reserve examples on eBay of several of these models.

Euro spec 1972 280SE Coupe hardtop

Unique black over red color combo. Mercedes occasionally made black roofed cars (My 1970 250C was black over silver), which added to an illusion of being a convertible, particularly when the windows are all down in the pillarless coupe.  This one appears well maintained. The no reserve and low starting price will guarantee a sale and provide a view of market value. Less than 100,000 miles can be considered low, my 250C ran strong and quiet with 200k. The 2.8 from this era was quite indestructible, (the same can’t be said for the later twin cam 2.8 model) and provides a wonderful thrumming yacht/cabin cruiser like sound. Tell me this isn’t a pretty car:
1972 280SE1972 280SE21972 280SE3

1966 250SE Coupe hardtop with 4 speed manual

German diplomat owned vehicle here so you can be sure it was optioned out. Again another example of the two tone paint job here with cream on top. An amazing 24,000 mile original being sold at no reserve, with a low starting price. Not as powerful as the 280, but the look remains. Interior shows class with wood, cracking can be a major problem, that still looks great and has a working Becker radio.  The four speed adds to this car’s already great value.
1966 250SE1966 250SE21966 250SE3

And for the high end a pair of stunning 1971 280SE 3.5 cabriolet models for sale to you at a bargain $139,000 for the first and a mere $175,000 for the second.

Both are restored column shifted automatics, you could get it with a floor shifter which is more fun. Very neat compact V-8.

The 63,000 mile car:
1971 280SE 3.51971 280SE 3.5 21971 280SE 3.5 3

The 35,000 mile car:
1971 280SE 3.5 blue1971 280SE 3.5 blue21971 280SE 3.5 blue3

The movie the Hangover brought these beautiful cars back into the attention of the masses as the ultimate Vegas boulevard cruiser, though the producers insanely thought it was necessary to destroy at least one for the films “intricate” plot to be properly told. Photos courtesy of locutus on fuzzyshot.com:
hangover1hangover2hangover3

While it is always nice to buy the best example you can afford, Mercedes paint on cars like this during this era can be exceptionally well done from the factory. Finding one that has lost its luster and at first looks sad and faded may be a perfect opportunity for a deal. Spending a good amount of time with a series of correct polishing compounds and elbow grease can yield stunning results on faded Mercedes paints. Check out these photos courtesy of M-100.cc:
Mercedes paint1Mercedes paint2Mercedes paint3

~Evan

1979 450SEL 6.9 AMG on eBay

The ultimate autobahn cruiser of its time and then some. Nothing could touch the Mercedes 6.9 in terms of might and comfort. Following in the tradition of the Mercedes 6.3, this was also the fastest four door sedan in the world when new. 100 MPH on the highway could be enjoyed as long as the fuel in the tank held out. The 6.9 liter (417 cu. in.) engine made bursts into the 140s attainable if needed.
The car’s impressive hydro-pneumatic suspension, operating at over 2000 psi provided silky smooth road manners and kept the car on an even plain on hard launches and braking. The system is however expensive to service if not maintained properly. Unmaintained 6.9s can be spotted by their lowrider like appearance as the suspension settles. Vacuum operated cruise, door locks, and trunk were nice features as well. Also of note is the car’s impressive 12 (!) quart dry sump lubrication system. This allowed for better oiling during a spirited workout and made it possible to cram the monster engine under the hood. The oil reservoir is mounted near the fender instead of in a pan underneath. Taking this car in to your local quick oil change place was not considered a viable option as you would either end up with a drained transmission pan or an engine short half a case of oil.

Genuine AMG vehicles of this era are hard to document. The factory didn’t keep great records so knowing a cars history is important.
is an interesting case since it has been restored and has a new engine rebuild.  The seller seems to know his stuff in terms of the 6.9, so likely there is no deal to be found here, just a chance to take ownership of mighty Merc. This car is also unique in that it is a a U.S. delivery Euro car. It has the good looking Euro headlights, but does that mean it has the Euro engine horsepower. With the new pistons it probably doesn’t matter. It also has leather which Euro cars did not have. Cali 6.9s were restricted down to 250 horsepower with emissions garbage. While full blown Euro spec cars hit nearly 300 with a meaty 420 lb ft of torque. Torque figures like that were scarcely seen anywhere outside muscle cars or dump trucks, neither of which could compete with a 6.9 in terms of all around enjoyment.

This car has some neat AMG options like the correct AMG steering wheel and 300 KPH speedometer, as well as an old style AMG trunk badge. Mercedes offered the 6.9 with debadging as an option. You could go super stealth with nothing on the trunk lid or just leave the small 6.9 tag minus the 450SEL label.

Full on AMG 6.9s with complete mono color body kit, blacked out trim, the Penta wheels and engine add ons like AMG cams are extremely rare and extremely good looking creatures. This one definitely qualifies as a stage 1 AMG, but doesn’t have the full treatment.

Having owned a full euro spec 6.9 I can attest with great vigor to the pleasure of driving these cars. The road manners and power are just amazing particularly considering the time period these cars were produced, think gas shortage and American luxo-barges.

There is plenty of information online about the 6.9 if you want to go look, but quickly here is a look at the 6.9 suspension being operated manually (the lever sits on top of the steering wheel):

and here is a link to the famous Brock Yates article about his experience thrashing a show room stock U.S. spec car around Road Atlanta for 100 miles. This is a fantastic article and reminds us that all cars are not created equal. Make sure to note the part about getting 5.9 MPG.

Below I’ve included a picture from one of my vintage AMG brochures, one of the only AMG brochures to show a 6.9, and a Flickr photo showing how the full 6.9 AMG package compares to this eBay listing in terms of looks. The sturdy lines of the 116 chassis Benz with AMG accoutrement in my mind are still some of the best and coupled with the formidable engine this is a package that 30 years later is still surprisingly sophisticated.

Lastly just for fun here are some 6.9s in the movies showing their stuff.
Ronin, scroll to about 4:50 for the good stuff:

Lost Highway, gets good about 1:00, R for language:

And of course Claude Lelouch’s C’etait un Rendez Vous, the film that started the “getaway” movie genre. Though the sound dubbed in is that of a Ferrari the car actually used was a 6.9. View the making of video to see the 6.9 with the camera mount.

~Evan

Cash for Clunkers Weekend Reading

You may remember my “spirited” post over the Cash for Clunkers program a little while back.

Well as a follow up here is the official government list of  cars sent to their deaths through the program.

Of note are the 63 BMW 6 series cars, including 13 635csi models, a 850i, a M3, and a M5.

Mercedes suffered as well, can you imagine over 100 560SEC s crushed? That is literally tons of usable parts from one of the greatest Benz engines gone. Looks like 11 Merc V12 engines also have made their last trip. No wonder parts are so expensive. A pair of AMG cars, a C36 and a C43, were sent away too and gasp a 500E.

A number of high end Audi models also are on the list and a sprinkling of Porsches.

Most surprising, though not German, on the list is the 1997 Bentley (listed as a Rolls Royce) Continental R and great oogley moogley a Buick GNX, listed under ASC. If that was a true GNX it could have been rolled and burned and still probably brought more than the CFC allowance.

Post your thoughts or interesting finds after you peruse the list.

~Evan

Low Miles W124 Merc E500 For Sale in Washington

Here’s a gorgeous , with only 8800 miles and a $43k buy-it-now:

1994 Mercedes E500 For Sale Low Miles

1994 Mercedes E500 For Sale Low Miles

quote from seller’s eBay listing:

1994 Mercedes E500 finished in Pearl Black over Parchment Leather interior. This ONE OWNER example is being presented in excellent, garage kept condition. Fully loaded with all options from the factory, this E500 is considered the original AMG Mercedes as it was a joint collaboration between Mercedes and Porsche, it carries with it very subtle OEM body treatments such as front and rear fender flares and enhanced grill. Purchased new in 12/94 from California dealer, this car has only seen 8800 miles and always stored in a climate controlled garage. All service documents from factory Authorized Mercedes dealer, all books, tools, and keys! No accidents or paintwork and is 100% all original as it came from the factory. Considered the lowest mileage E500 in the country known to exist. A collectible car with the comfort and ease of a daily driver!

While there aren’t many E500’s with this kind of mileage — after all, most were driven by wealthy executives who didn’t care about miles — $43k sounds very optimistic. Maybe there are gold bars in the glove box, but I think in this economy, the seller is really holding out for the one in a million (or billion?) that might justify the price for the miles.

dc

Cheap 1993 Mercedes 600SEC in Denver

I spotted this 600SEC on Craigslist in Denver to compliment the 600SEL I recently posted. Here is an inexpensive two door version. A lot of what I said in that previous post about the 600SEL goes for the 600SEC, just minus two doors. $5500 even with 105k miles is a heck of a lot of car for the money. You’ll need to get a lot more description than this seller offers though before pulling the trigger. It may run great, but with all the 15 year old electronics there is plenty that can be wrong. Still at $5500, drive it for a season, hope nothing major breaks, and then sell it for what you put into it.

~Evan

Mercedes Benz 600SEL a good choice for Labor Day

What better way to celebrate labor day then by looking at a car that was designed to take the labor out of the automobiling experience.
Do you remember the good old days when Mercedes put the letters describing their models after the numbers? Remember when those numbers and letters really stood for something instead of arbitrary model distinctions? 1992 was the last year before the switch. That year the king of the Mercedes line was the 600SEL. This was the first Mercedes V-12 since after World War Two. So at the time a Mercedes V-12 was much more a rarity than they are today.

Despite packing a V-12 this car was more than just a high power autobahn cruiser. It was packed with technical goodies that made it stand far above other models at the time.
The car had self closing doors, a power trunk handle, double pane power windows that stopped going up if your hand got in the way. Power front and rear head rests, heated headlamp washers, Bose stereo, the car even has a built in trickle charger. Perhaps most above and beyond were the two little antennas that popped out of the rear fenders when you went into reverse to help you see where the end of the car was. Remember this was well before the days of navigation, i-drive, and other now common technical gizmos.
1992 is also a significant year as that year the 48 valve V-12 put out 408 horsepower. Again remember, this is 1992 and that type of power was virtually unheard of in a sedan. By 1994 those pesky U.S. emissions requirements strangled horsepower down to 389 so the early 600SELs are the prize of the W140 bodied cars.

appears to be a fine, unmodified, low mileage example, only 59,000 miles. There should a ton of life left in the engine as long as the massive amounts of electrical components don’t cause a new owner problems. Not only is the car nice, the seller does a very good job with the ad text. This car was purchased new for $152,896.90. When you figure there is at least a $125,000 worth of depreciation to account for, purchasing a 600SEL today seems like a deal. Not a bad way to get a car in your driveway with V12 badges on the side. Just make sure you get the most well cared for example or you’ll be left with an empty wallet trying to fix peripheral items.

Here is a clip of a younger Jermey Clarkson talking about the 600SEL, scroll to 4:42 to see the over the top rear fender aerials in action:

~Evan