Mercedes 6.9 powered Sbarro Gullwing

The seller has had this listed a couple times on eBay and it hasn’t sold. It is listed as a 1976, but while that may be how it was registered I’m certain this car was converted in the early 1980s. It is riding on the W126 500SEC based chassis, not as the seller states the 116.  The engine is the 6.9 liter out of the 116 based 450SEL 6.9, though. (edit: This model is on the W116 chassis, unlike the 5.0 liter versions that came on the W126.)

While this one is an automatic, these cars were available with a 5 speed manual and with a bi-turbo engine 5.0. When new these cars started at 250,000 German marks.

The Swiss based Franco Sbarro company still does business on high end vehicles.

The seller might want to go with more classic rims and include more information and pictures of the engine bay if they want to get anything close to the $90,000 ask price.

UPDATE

At first look this indeed looks like a W126 chassis vehicle. This has the W116 dash, something I easily recognize from my days of 6.9 ownership, and distinctive U.S. market 116 servo climate control center console, something my 6.9 didn’t have being grey market.

Two sources I used in digging up some info, Customizing and Tuning Mercedes by Heitz and Neff and Extraordinary Automobiles by Vann and Asaria both list Sbarro as using 500SEC W126 chassis as the basis for these conversions, calling it first the Shahin 1000 and then the 500 Portes Papillon Gullwing. It turns out they did use 116 chassis parts when using the 6.9 liter engine as opposed to the 5.0 or the 5.0 twin turbo option. Apparently the 6.9 motor was not available with the twin turbo option. It was one or the other, though who knows, money could lead companies like this to do strange things for customers.

There is also some wonderful additional photos and information available over at 1000sel.com and this Sbarro Shahin website which quotes directly from the Vann book and uses the same photos from that book.

~Evan

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8 Comments

  1. this car is very beatufull i like it thankss this workk 🙂

  2. I dunno. All I can think of is Tacky.

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  4. The gullwing is based on a 116 chassis. Look at the dash. It is a stock 116 unit with the push button climate control. Very different from the 126 units. The metal work looks great, but the style screams 1982 Florida / Miami Vise.

  5. Just as a side note, I have a 6.9 without the tranny from a 116 body setting in a 126 500 SEC. the motor is very tall and it would take a heck of a hood scoop and a huge trans tunnel to make it actually work. But it sure catches peoples attention when thay see it. I always get comments like, I never knew Mercedes made a big block, or why did you set that american motor in that Mercedes. Very funny.

  6. I’ve added a bit more info to this post with additional resources.

  7. I dug through my auction archives and two of these have sold in the past that I have records for. One in 1997 and one in 2002. Both were 6.9 engined and chassised models. One sold for $40,575. I have extensive photos for both and descriptions for anyone interested. Neither one appears to be this car.

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