While the wild men and woman over in Stuttgart were cranking out the crazy colors, it looks like the usually serious folks at BMW wanted to have a little fun too. Or rather, it looks like someone paid them to do this. This is a 2003 BMW 540i created by the Individual department with not only one of the crazier exterior colors I’ve seen on an E39, but probably a top three wildest interior setups I’ve seen as well. The story is a corporation reportedly ordered this car and had it armored as well, which makes no sense considering you usually want cars that blend in if you are the kind of people who needs an armored vehicle. Whatever the case may be, I am glad it exists because I live with these wild specs. Wait until you see this interior.
Another week, another case of “I would pay to know the story behind this one“!
What we are checking out today is a 1978 Mercedes-Benz 350SE up for sale in Italy with a four-speed manual transmission. That alone is good enough. However, this one also has armored body panels, bulletproof glass, anti-burglary tire valves (?), a PA system, and a fire suppression system! I try really hard not to stereotype, but my goodness this was the owner of this car doing that required all of this?
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1978 Mercedes-Benz 350SE at Luzzago
While Mercedes-Benz is the go-to for protected dignitaries, executives and everyone else who has a potential mark of their back, they’re not alone in offering upgraded armor to their lineup. BMW also entered the game with their “Protection Package”. This turned the 7 into the ‘ultimate surviving machine’ by adding bulletproof glass front, sides and rear along with armor behind the body panels and no sunroof. A claimed 44 were sold here, making this one of the most rare variants of any BMW imported:
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2000 BMW 740iL Protection Package on eBay
Just when I thought I’ve seen everything. Mercedes-Benz G-Wagens have had a long history of use by police and military units, but this one might take the cake as one of the most unusual special builds I’ve seen on one of these. This is a 1984 280GE that was outfitted for the police tactical unit EKO Cobra of the Austrian Federal Ministry of the Interior. Built by the Austrian company Achleitner, this G is not only fully armored and bulletproof, it also has a full 360-degree gunner seat, a roof turret and port holes out of all the pieces of two-inch thick glass. All of this while looking like a somewhat civilian G-Wagen. Whatever EKO Cobra did or planned to do with this thing, they weren’t playing around. Now somehow and someway, this literal tank of a W460 made its way to Massachusetts and is up for sale to the general public. The thing is, this 280GE has to be close useless in most situations and at this asking price, will have even the biggest G fans scratching their heads.
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1984 Mercedes-Benz 280GE on Craigslist
Some of my favorite cars that I like to dig into are cars built for or owned by significant individuals. Sometimes it is wealthy or important business people, but most of time with Mercedes-Benz it is heads of state. These cars are usually built with no expense spared because the person riding inside the car is worth far more than whatever it costs to buy the car. This is true of today’s car, a 1995 Mercedes-Benz S600 up for sale in Florida.
This S600 was built by TRASCO, a company in Germany that builds Mercedes that can literally take a bomb and everything up to that. This car is built to ”B7 level”, which is every firearm up to and including armor piecing rifles. You are probably asking who needs this kind of protection in the United States? Well, none other than the Sultan of Brunei. You’ve probably heard the crazy stories of him owning over 7,000 cars and manufacturers building him one-off creations of cars that you don’t even know existed. He has 11 McLaren F1s, 20 Koenigseggs and 300 Ferraris. The guy loves cars and spends his out of this world wealth to buy them and basically let them sit. But again, why would the Sultan of a country off the South China Sea need a car in California? Well, so he has something to be chauffeured around in when he is visiting his 38 million dollar home in Beverly Hills, of course. It doesn’t even end there. This car is supposedly one of four examples built just for the Sultan to be used in America. That’s how crazy this guy is with cars.