I’m not exactly breaking any news here, but if you want an R129 Mercedes-Benz 600SL/SL600 at somewhat of a reasonable price, don’t sit around too much longer. The cream of the crop is already selling for a ton of money, and the very nice examples have quickly risen to a level where you really have to love these cars to spend the amount of money they are demanding. Thankfully there still are some not-so expensive ones out there on the market, but I think it is very clearly becoming a “you get what you pay” situation on them. Today’s example, a 2000 SL600 up for sale outside of Boston, sure seems to be one of those cases.
It is very clear to me that the death of the V12 is near. It was certainly inevitable, as outside of a few very select manufacturers it just isn’t in the cards anymore. What does that mean? Go buy a V12, of course! I guess I’m not alone in thinking this as prices of the somewhat more common V12 cars have started to creep up. A prime example is the R129. For a long time, these hovered in the teens, but now the very best ones are selling for strong money and the pack of average ones is starting to catch up.
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1997 Mercedes-Benz SL600 on eBay
In terms of the R129 Mercedes-Benz, it doesn’t get better than this. This is the SL73 AMG. Just 85 were made and they are the only SL fitted with M297 V12, which is a variant of the M120 that was tuned by AMG. This is the same 7.3 V12 that powered the early Zonda cars and, of course, the CLK GTR Straßenversion. It is basically the cream of the crop when it comes to the naturally aspirated Mercedes V12 engines and threw down an impressive output of 561 horsepower and 575 lb-ft of torque. Even looking at it is worth the price of admission. But to have the engine and all the car wrapped around it? Bring a very large check.
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2000 Mercedes-Benz SL73 AMG on carsensor.net
One of the more interesting subsects of the automotive world are cars that seemingly are common, but in reality extremely rare. If you see a Ferrari F40 driving down the street or parked on a lawn somewhere, you have a pretty good idea that is a rare car. A 1999 Mercedes-Benz S600 parked at the grocery store? You can find those anywhere, right? That would be wrong. Very wrong.
The W140 chassis was wrapping up in 1999 as Mercedes already launched their new flagship W220 all over Europe. So whatever leftover cars they had came to the US to sell off. Turns out they didn’t have many of the M120 V12s to offer up. Just 14 S600 sedans and 15 CL600 coupes were produced for the 1999 model year. That is it! A generation that saw 432,732 examples built came down to a final 29 cars. Guess what we have today?
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1999 Mercedes-Benz S600 on eBay
As the years go on, the W140 Mercedes-Benz coupe is looking more and more appealing to me. The European version, at least. I say that half joking, but it is true. Why? Some very small changes that seem to make all the difference to me. Slightly shorter bumpers and different 18″ wheels as we see here, along with amazing colors like Viola Metallic. As luck would have it, that is what we have with this 1997 CL600 for sale up in Stuttgart, Germany.