”Purple rain, purple rain. I only wanted to see you, bathing in the purple rain.”
When it rains it pours, and apparently it is raining purple. Last week I looked at a very rare 1991 Mercedes-Benz 300SE painted in Bornite Metallic and as luck would have it, another purple Mercedes pops up only this time it is painted in Almandine-Black Metallic. Now don’t let the word ”black” fool you, this car is purple. Interesting thing is, I actually looked a W220 S430 painted in this color about two years ago and was quite smitten with it. However, this 2000 CL500 up for sale in California, I am in less than in love with. I think the color is fine, it is just everything else is wrong with it. Literally everything.
The Mercedes-Benz W140 Coupe, or C140, is one of those cars that you might have forgotten about until you see one in the wild or stumble across one for sale. There is good reason for that seeing that Mercedes made a little over 400,000 W140 sedans while only producing 26,000 coupes. You can see that is quite a difference in production numbers and now that the youngest W140 is almost 20 years-old, they are only are getting more rare. Today, I wanted to check out the rarest W140 ever produced, the CL420. Just 2,500 CL420/S420 Coupes were produced from 1994 to 1998 and exactly zero ever made it to America. These Coupes used the 4.2 liter M119 V8 borrowed from the sedan and was the smallest engine choice available in the C140. This 1996 up for sale in Spain is probably one of the most well-preserved CL420s out there despite its 112,000 miles. I just wish I could bring it to America.
Some things never change. One of those things just happens to be people cutting the roof off Mercedes-Benz coupes and adding convertible tops. I’m not kidding. They did it with the C126, they did it with the C140 and they did it with the C215. Naturally, they did it with today’s car, a 2007 CL550, up for sale in Florida. Thankfully for everyone, Mercedes started doing it themselves with the 2015 S-Class convertible that looks amazing in my eyes. The biggest problem with these conversions is that they are clunky. Adding a convertible top to a car is no easy feat and those who do it as an afterthought always face an uphill battle. It’s one thing to make everything function smoothly and actually work, but it is a whole other challenge to make it look good. Most of the time when the top canvas is folded down, it creates an ungainly mass of metal and fabric sticking up behind the rear seats. This not only looks bad, but has horrible wind noise and causes visibility problems. Nevertheless, people still do it because people still buy them for whatever reason. As for this specific car? I have a no idea why anyone would ever consider it. Let me explain why.