1995 Mercedes S600 Armored

This is one battle ready S class. If you are just looking for regular luxury transportation this is not for you. If your ride to work may lead you through an area known for IEDs or near that former business partner you screwed over who happens to also own a collection of sniper rifles, this may be perfect. This car was built for the Sultan of Brunei by TRASCO a company that was known for building the ultimate in specialized urban protective vehicles. TRASCO is now one of the companies that falls under the Centigon nameplate. The original cost, and you can be sure no expense was spared, was $400,000 you also can be sure that whatever this sells for now it will include a lot of priced in depreciation, the buy-it-now price is $85,000.

With 3″ thick glass and 1/2″ steel plating the car meets European level B6 armor standards, or in other words it’s capable of fending off 7.62mm rounds from the guy parked next to you with a machine gun. Naturally all that armor is going to add a literal ton of weight, the car weighs 7600lbs, but thankfully you have Mercedes’ 6.0 liter V-12 helping put plenty of power through run flat tires and also an upgraded suspension. The car comes with the stock rims as well as a nice set of big Carlsson wheels.

With 20,000 miles the car looks brand new. It even is coming off of a year long stay as an exhibition car in the Petersen Automotive Museum. Here is a link showing the car at the museum.

This is not really a collectible car and should not be seen as an investment, but should go to someone who will use it for what it was built for. Someone who has a chauffeur and is genuinely concerned for their own and their family’s  security.

~Evan

1993 Mercedes 500SL for the Superbowl

For the Superbowl I thought this car was appropriate.
A 1993 Mercedes 500SL formerly owned by NFL player and broadcaster Pat Summerall. I don’t really think there is much value added in the former owner status though, no offense to Pat.
67,000 miles is not much at all. With so many of these 5.0 Benz engines out there parts should not be outrageous. The seller says the car has a brand nw convertible top and another $1600 in recent tuneups. I kind of like the blackberry color on this car.
It is nice that it comes with both tops as I think if you aren’t going to drive topless the hardtop on the SL is a much better look than the softtop.
The $11,700 ask should have some play in it if the owner wants to sell.

~Evan

’02 M5 with 30k miles on eBay

Continuing E39 M5 theme week, I found one that closely matches the requirement of our fellow M-lover over at the M5 Video Guide.  It’s an ’02 instead of an ’03, but it’s a clean Carbon Black version with just 30k miles.

With 9 days left on the auction it’s just under $18k.  Depreciating at almost $2/mile has to hurt for the original owner, but it’s all good for the buyer.  The gray interior isn’t as striking as the Caramel we saw on one the other day, but getting one of the best sport sedans ever made with so few miles for around $20k will probably help you get over the interior color pretty quickly.

My main realization of M5 week thus far is how amazingly accessible these M5s have become.  THIS WEEK ONLY, M5s 75% off! (until next week, and the week after that…)

-NR

Insane 1990 Syncro Westfalia for Sale

I know we usually restrict our posts to German autos of the sporting variety, but people are doing such insane things with Vanagons these days I got clearance to post them every once in a while.  A utilitarian beast at heart, Vanagons have a unique following, a following so diehard that they go to extraordinary lengths to restore, modify, and improve their vans.  Some create cab-forward boxes with performance to shame a lot of the cars we post here, many with increasingly common Subaru WRX and STI engine-swaps.  Others, like the one we have today, have been completely redone to be unstoppable adventure-mongers.  GoWesty (as in Westfalia, the camper edition of Vanagon), has the process down and churns out some incredibly capable and well-built vans.  With a plethora of modification and restoration possibilities, they can clean up your van and fix the sink, or you can have them do a ground-up build with the only limit being the size of your wallet.

This 1990 Syncro (4WD in VWspeak) explores the latter option to the extreme.  New everything and more, they have created a no-holds-barred adventure machine with a coffee-spitting price: $80k.

1990 Vanagon Westfalia Syncro for sale at GoWesty.com

The insane worklist:

This is all the stuff we did for Doug:

• Stripped down completely to the bare body
• Collision damage repaired back to factory exact specification
• Complete repaint inside and out to factory color
• Black texture treatment all around the bottom
• GoWesty plate steel bumpers, rear with integral hitch
• Skid plate up front
• Double swing-away carrier for rear
• Full size spare wheel
• Fuel and water cans
• New hemp/cotton 3-window pop top tent
• All new interior panels with matching Recaro material inserts
• New Recaro front seats
• Rear seat and bed cushion recovered in Recaro fabric to match front seats
• All typically discolored and shrunken vinyl around windows removed, and all surfaces painted to match exterior
• Undercarriage stripped clean
• Steam cleaned thoroughly
• Undercoated thoroughly
• All fresh suspension and steering
• Old Man Emu shocks
• GoWesty progressive lifting springs
• All new brake system
• Big brakes up front
• All new brake and clutch hydraulic systems
• All new cooling system
• Fuel and electrical systems all gone through thoroughly
• GoWesty super duper ultra major maintenance service
– All maintenance items back to zero miles
• 16″ wheels with 225/70-16 BFG tires
• Fresh GoWesty 2.5 liter engine with 48/48 warranty
• Fresh transaxle and front differential, 48/48 warranty, with:
– 12% lower 5.43:1 ratio final drive gearing
– Triple knobs, which means:
– Driveshaft decoupler and solid shaft instead of viscous coupler
– Locking differential front
– Locking differential rear
• Deluxe 3 auxiliary battery system
• 50 watt solar panel on roof, quick-release style
• All-electric Engel fridge/freezer installed quick-release style
• Old fridge space turned into more cabinet space
• New LP tank assembly
• Propex built-in 7500 btu furnace
• Over $2800 worth of “just in case” preemptive reliability enhancing items
• Killer stereo with iPod, XM, and sub woofer
• Dashboard removed and all systems rebuilt
• All new power windows with centrally located switches
• All new power door lock system with remote entry
• On-board compressed air system for easy air-up of tires after off-roading

Basically: Just about everything we offer for a Syncro, Doug ordered for this puppy.

Is it all necessary?  No, probably not.  Is it awesome?  Definitely.  Doug, the guy who had it built, obviously wanted to pull out all the stops, and it shows.  It’s beautiful and simple inside and out, and while the parts list is excessive, every piece seems well thought out and useful.  If it means anything, it’s $25k less than it would cost to build from scratch and has only done 9k miles since its rebirth.  No, it’s not a bargain, but it is unquestionably valuable to a specific group of German car lovers.

-NR

2002 BMW E39 M5, 72k miles, $17,500

Carrying on with this week’s focus on E39 M5s, here is an example that could fall into the cheap buy category. We are all familiar with this car and its stonking performance, so on with the details…

2002 BMW M5 on Craigslist Philadelphia

The seller has this to say:

Silver 2002 BMW M5 with Black Leather Interior -72Kmiles

I am sacraficing my 2002 BMW M5. This beast has a V8 400h engine, 6 speed transmission. The M5 has all the standard options including Xenon headlights, M5 Sports Suspension, dynamic stability control, power sunroof, heated power M5 Sports seats, 6 CD changer in the trunk etc, etc. The Titanium Silver body is clean. There are some roadchips near the grill and a couple scratches on the bumpers. The 18 inch performance tires and rims have alot of life left in them.

The black leather interior with suede lining has been a non smoking auto with minimal wear. I put in a new OEM clutch and rear brakes about 6K ago. Clean Title. Well maintained. Maintenance records available. Disclosure: the Navigation cd-rom drive needs to be repaired, but all other computer functions work properly. This a great deal for an amazing car.

The one thing I would like to know more about is why this car needed a new clutch at 66,000 miles. Also, it is quite odd that the rear brakes, not the fronts, were the ones replaced. An uncle of mine, who owned many BMWs as well as some M models, always said he was hesitant about buying used M cars, as they are often driven hard and put up wet. A clutch replacement at 66k is making me lean towards this assumption. Another thing to be careful of is cars in the Philadelphia/NYC/Boston corridor often lead hard lives.

Depending on how well this example drives and the extent of the maintenance records, this could be a good deal. Retail values of clean M5’s in this mileage range seems to be runnin in the low to mid $20k range on average these days.

-Paul

23,000 Mile 2000 E39 BMW M5

As promised I am keeping with our theme of looking for E39 BMW M5s this week. I was looking around for an E39 to fill the slot of worst modified, but Ben claimed the same car I was going to talk about before me. You’ll see it tomorrow.
So I decided to make an attempt at the low mileage category with this nice 23,000 mile example.
Being a 2000 it is an early example of the E39 M5. With such low miles the car has hardly been broken in. The driver seat even looks almost new. Very pretty in silver, this unmolested original, will make someone a great driver for years to come. The crisp lines are satisfying just to look at and the bit of window tint adds a touch more sleekness.

Any ideas on what it will be bid up to? A premium will be paid for sure for this kind of mileage. Buyers be ware as the seller has low feedback.

~Evan

Kicking off BMW e39 M5 Week with a Reader Request

This week we’re taking a moment to begin introducing theme weeks to the blog, and to get us started we’re featuring the fabulous e39 M5. These cars represent amazing value and have a proud place in the M5 lineage. We’ll include more information on the special features of this car as the week progresses.

Tonight we begin with a note I received from a friend of the site, Brooks from the M5 Video Guide, who wrote:

Unfortunately one of the M5 Video Guide customers recently lost his silver E39 M5 in a winter weather related car accident. The good news is that no one was injured, but sadly the car is a write-off.

He would like to purchase another E39 M5 and is willing to pay top dollar. His preference would be a 2003 M5 in either Carbon Black, Jet Black or LeMans Blue.

His request was very timely and fits nicely with our inauguration of the e39 M5 Theme Week. And with a generous budget, me and the guys got to work! Here are our picks:

The first is this stunning 03 M5 in Carbon Black on gorgeous Nappa Heritage Caramel leather. In addition to a low 40k miles, this car has tasteful Dinan upgrades and enthusiast ownership history. Check it out on Autotrader for $33k in Houston.


Another 03 in Carbon Black, but this one has the extended black leather package. Similar miles at 43k, reported all dealer service with records, and no mods except Dinan software and iPod controller. This lovely example is in Seattle on Autotrader for $29k.


Or how about this 2003 in LeMans Blue and Caramel leather on the M5Board for $32,500 and 48k miles (New Jersey):


And here are 4 more that also meet the criteria!

Well I hope one of these work because after posting them all up, I’m more than a little worked up for e39 Theme Week. I mean even the most expensive one of the bunch is half of the original sticker price and these have all the bugs worked out and are ready to run.

Stay tuned for more e39 Theme Week!

dc

Clean, low mileage, 1989 Mercedes-Benz 560SEC

The 560SEC was not a common car to begin with, as just a little over 5,000 were produced for the 1989 model year. In total, during its entire production run, almost 29,000 were produced. Considering Toyota makes over 400,000 Camrys a year, this kind of gives you a perspective on just how rare these W126 coupes are. Finding a clean one these days proves to be quite a challenge, however, there are still some out there. Take for instance this example, which has evaded the harsh Northeast climate, advertised in Hemmings Motor News:

1989 Mercedes-Benz 560SEC on Hemmings

The seller notes:

1989 Mercedes-Benz 560SEC, Desert Taupe mettallic / Creme beige leather. FLAWLESS, only 48,000 documented miles. Spectacular original paint, clearcoat, glass. Impeccable interior, carpet, wood trim. Fully sorted by obsessive owner and his German born Mercedes (only) mechanic. NEW: A/C compressor, condenser (conversion to R134), water pump, valve cover gasket, brakes (rotors & pads), wheel bearings, tires, alignment, sway bar linkage, window regulators, steering shock, headrest guides. All electronics work perfectly including orginal Becker radio, sunroof, seatbelt extenders, antenna. Remote locking, alarm, 6 disc CD changer. Beautiful!

I haven’t seen one of these for sale with under 50,000 miles for a while, so $22,900 seems pretty fair, especially if it as well documented as the seller describes. This is a lot of car for the money, especially considering this was the most expensive Mercedes-Benz for sale in 1989.

-Paul

1976 Porsche 911 V8 Custom 993 Turbo Body

Here is an interesting Porsche 911. A 1976 with a 993 turbo body kit and a built 350 Chevy stuffed in the back. Perhaps stuffed is not the right word as it doesn’t do justice to the amount of quality work that appears on this vehicle. Judging from the description the seller seems to be a straight shooter, which I like to see in car listings.
This car has a lot of time and parts put into it. The list of modifications is well done, purposeful, without being over the top. The seller claims there is 243 hours worth of work in the paint and body work alone. With 350+ horsepower and weighing only 2550 pounds it is good thing it has a full cage.
This car does look like serious fun and it will be one of a kind.

Here is the list of equipment:

Body: European 993 Turbo S body kit. Correct details down to the left hand wiper conversion. Need I say more?

Electrical: Early Porsches are not known for electrical engineering excellence. That is why I rewired the whole car with a modern Painless Performance racing fuse block using standard ATC type fuses. Everything is fused and I have even installed a Flaming River cut-off switch. Don’t forget the aircraft style starter switch…nothing but the best.

Interior: The interior was stripped down to bare metal (floor pans were perfect) and then sealed with a truck bed liner. Lightweight custom aircraft grade door panels covered in black leather with “Porsche” embossed. Did I mention the guy who has done interiors for Jay Leno did this interior? Race seats, 5-point harnesses, SCCA roll cage, and RS style pulls is just the start.

Stereo: You should be listening to the glorious sounds of V8 torque behind you. If not, a Sony CD player with auxillary input (think IPOD, or SAT radio) with 280 watts should suffice.

Engine: Race bred Corvette 350 V8 with a healthy cam. Blueprinted, balanced, forged crankshaft & connecting rods, and even painted to match the car. MSD racing ignition system, rev limiter, FlowMaster 40’s, Custom headers, everything Jet Hot coated to the tips in chrome.

Drivetrain: This is what separates the men from the boys. I have a Renegade Hybrids 915 racing 5-speed transmission with the sought after 8:31 ring and pinion. But wait, it gets better… It is a true MAGNESIUM cased tranny with solid Billet inserts and modifications. Only 100 pounds dry! (I know, I shipped it out Fed Ex) The engine is only running 350+ HP and 375+ Torque. This tranny is built to take 450 HP+. Extra tall 1st and 5th gears, 930 bearings, and 930 diff. cover. It has been purpose built from the start with one thing in mind: put the horsies to the pavement! Wevo short shift kit, Redline Fluid and topped off with a chrome Porsche shift knob.

Clutch you ask? Why sure – it is a KEVLAR clutch and custom pressure plate. Why Kevlar? It simply is the best. It takes a long time to break in (500 miles) and must be done carefully. Trust me, after the coin I dropped, it was broken in by the book and you will enjoy my restraint for years to come.

How do you stop such a beast? I was hoping you would ask. I installed a complete Boxer Motorsports racing brake kit. This is often referred to a “Big Red” brake kit. The rotors and pads are actually common racing “Outlaw” and “Hawk” parts – easily sourced, if needed. I also rebuilt the master cylinder and upgraded to stainless steel brake lines. It wouldn’t be complete without the ATE Super Blue racing fluid. I was convince I would need a brake “bias adjuster” to properly set up my car. However, the system was so perfect right out of the box that it was not needed. During the prescribed break-in ritual for the brakes, I performed numerous hard stops, terrified my neighbors, and then returned home to shoot rotor temps with a laser thermometer – 250 degrees. They were not even breaking a sweat. The brakes are simply one of the most gratifying aspects of this car.

Suspension: Since the V8 is actually 50 POUNDS LIGHTER than a 930 turbo motor, I was forced to modify the suspension. The 30mm hollow core racing torsion bars held the car too high. Solution = more racing components. Each corner of the car is fully adjustable. It is currently set at 20% lower than European ride height. Did I mention the car only weighs 2550 pounds? It has the power to weight ratio of a rocket. All new polygraphite bushings, tie rods, ball joints, front strut brace, bump steer kit as well as any other component that can be replaced. The Porsche dealer then spent SIX hours aligning the car to my specs – and I was there the whole time. The car handles absolutely fantastic with instant feedback. Want to hang the tail out – no problem. Flip the car around a corner – yes. It stays flat, level, and begs for more. You will become a better driver just by testing this car.

Wheels & Tires: The wheels and tires you see are BRAND NEW with ZERO miles. I had some comments on my old wheels (see video link). To show everyone that this is truly a “no holds barred, cost no object project” I bought all new 19″ rims AND tires. They are mounted, balanced, and FILLED WITH NITROGEN. The STICKERS ARE STILL ON THEM…for now. I may take the car out and put a few miles on them. However, I have averaged less than 500 miles a year, so don’t expect many miles, if any.

Protection: Ah yes, you want to come back to the car where you parked it. No worries here – there is a fully functioning FM remote paging alarm with a ridiculous range and a full vehicle display.

The seller even includes a video of the car so you can hear it fire up. The idle is pretty lumpy you can tell it has a hot cam.

The seller is looking for $45,000 plus, and I find this hilarious, a 12 pack of Rolling Rock “to help drown my sorrows when you peel out of my driveway and I never see her again!”

~Evan