1988 Mercedes-Benz 560SEC

A couple weeks ago we featured an 1984 500 SEC AMG. While it was a great low mile example of 1980’s tuning, it was far form attainable at a $64K asking price.  Enter the logical alternative, the 560 SEC.  While not equipped with all of the AMG goodies, this 560 SEC is arguably a much better car. With the more powerful 5.6l V8 (279bhp and 317lb/ft) and oozing with luxury options the 1988 560 SEC was the highest evolution of the W126 coupes.

This black on black beauty for sale in Charlotte, North Carolina is a tribute to Mercedes Benz class and luxury.

Year: 1988
Model: 560SEC
Engine: 5.6 liter V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 134,180
Price: $15,995 Buy it Now

1988 Mercedes-Benz 560SEC on eBay

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In the late-80s, the heaviest of heavy-hitters was the Mercedes-Benz S-class, with the dramatic 560SEC coupe at the very top of the hierarchy. Stunning luxury machines like this black-on-black 1988 example could hammer the Autobahn all day at triple-digit speeds, coddling their occupants like no other car in the world. Fresh off a recent service by a Mercedes-Benz dealership, this one is ready to impress today.

Few cars have a more commanding road presence than an S-class Mercedes, especially in sinister, inky black. With a recent paint job, this one doesnt look 24 years old, now rejuvenated and beautifully preserved thanks to an enthusiastic owner. The big coupe has style in spades, with a dramatic hardtop profile and sleek lines that definitely announce that this big Benz takes no prisoners. In typical German fashion, the design is restrained and the clean lines minimize the cars size, but theres no denying that this is a lot of car hammering down the road. A few bits of chrome, like the surround for the window opening emphasizes the cars best attributes, and theres just no mistaking the big 3-pointed star up front that moves lesser traffic out of the way like a snow plow. Experts will note subtle modifications like the clear parking light lenses and smoked taillights, both of which seem to further enhance the sleek shape.

Inside, the S-class got every luxury and convenience item Mercedes engineers could imagine in 1988. Power leather buckets are firm and supportive and in shockingly good condition considering the age and mileage on this coupe. Gorgeous door panels feature different materials and shapes that helped Mercedes break out of its cold, impersonal interior look, and the burled walnut on the center console warms it up inside nicely. White-faced gauges are a modern twist on the clear instruments Mercedes always offered, and theres a massive stereo system featuring a Kenwood head unit, speakers fitted throughout the interior, and a big subwoofer in the trunk. Heated seats, climate control, power windows, and a sunroof are all included, making this a first-class luxury liner.

The 5.6 liter V8 under the hood is one of Mercedes most reliable units, capable of running for hundreds of thousands of miles with little more than basic maintenance. Torquey and smooth, it moves the big coupe with the effortless ease of an electric motor, and the relentless push of torque makes it feel like it could accelerate forever. Beautifully maintained, the engine bay is spotless, from the big chrome air cleaner lid to all the hoses and wires that comprise what was, at the time, the worlds most technically advanced automobile. Obviously, someone loved this oneA LOT. Its the same deal underneath, where theres a 4-speed automatic with syrupy smooth shifts and a fully independent suspension that soaks up bumps like a hovercraft. Oversized 18-inch AMG wheels look simply awesome, and wear 245/45/18 performance radials.

Back in the late 80’s this was the car that you drove when you wanted to say “I have arrived”.  Whether on the stock market, rap game, or slinging coke this was the car that you drove when you made it big.  The one thing that  love about this car is that 25 years later, it says the same thing, except now you’re a connoisseur, making this the perfect car to set you apart from the AMG driving “new money”.

This car is priced fairly considering it’s well kept and has only traveled a scant 5K miles per year its whole life. I’d be interested to see the ownership history and some maintenance records, but mainly for my own curiosity and piece of mind.  Considering the quality Mercedes-Benz puts in to their cars, it’s no surprise that 25 years later this car will scream “I have arrived.”


1987 Mercedes-Benz 560SEL Carat by Duchatelet Limousine

The limos that have come through our pages before always attract a very specific type of buyer. They are a hard sell. The types that can afford a limo usually want a brand new one for status points. Old limos often show signs of abuse or have weak points if they were assembled poorly. We’ve seen old limos turned into campers, but really you have to want to be a chauffeur to buy one.

Year: 1987
Model: 560SEL Carat Duchatelet Limo
Engine: 5.6 liter V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 39,000
Price:  $29,500. Buy It Now

1987 Mercedes-Benz 560SEL Carat by Duchatelet Limo on eBay

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This Duchatelet customized Benz shows classic understated looks. Not nearly as ostentatious as a modern two tone Maybach or as crazy as many of the other 1980s Mercedes tuners. This style is something that Duchatelet was known for. The Belgian based company did extensive work on interiors of Mercedes vehicles, but their conversions we almost always done in a tasteful and functional manner. Though not their main job they did however offer gullwing door conversions.

The company, whose motto was “Nothing great was ever born of compromise,” worked on the full line of Benz cars. They would do security and interior packages for stretched W126 cars or interiors on W124 chassis cars. The only thing they didn’t do was performance modifications, instead they focused their energy on making some of the most exclusive and expensive interiors for very high end customers.

In looking at the pictures you can see that the fit and finish of the interior custom work looks like it came straight from the factory. The look is one of elegance and not cobbled together prom night limo. Custom touches extend to the door sills and gauge cluster. There is a lot of extra wood and leather and some extra electronics including a retractable divider. The car appears to have been updated with a more modern flat screen television screen which tells me that the car has been cared for. The ad states that several maintenance issues have been kept up so the car is ready to go. It does have the hydropneumatic suspension for a smoother ride, but look out for potential higher costs in terms of servicing if not maintained.

There are only 39,000 miles on the machine so it hasn’t been used much. When you think what this custom work cost new some owner had some very expensive dollars per mile with this car. The setup of the interior is designed for the business person, not the party wagon with limited seating.

The ad listing doesn’t provide much description about the car, it doesn’t even say what model it is, but a look under the hood shows this is a 560SEL based car. Which makes sense since that would have been the top of the line Benz sedan of the day. The 5.6 liter V8 should be providing plenty of power to move the car along at highway speed despite the extra weight.

Not a bad car, and at that mileage it should have plenty of life left. If you want to be carted around, but can’t let go of the 1980s this is your car. The price is a bit steep at $29,500. I doubt there will be any takers at that price. You could get yourself a really nice 750il or newer S class at that price. While they wouldn’t have as much leg room they might be more practical choices unless you really want to run a livery service.

1987 Mercedes 560SEL Carat by Duchatelet Limo on eBay


1984 Mercedes-Benz 500 SEC AMG Widebody

As a child of the 80’s it goes without saying that this very car graced the walls of my bedroom sandwiched between a 911 and a Countach. This was the sort of car I lusted after when I was young. Today I still have a soft spot for this look, as the monochromatic AMG look is truly timeless.

Whoever ordered this car new knew what they were doing and certainly spared no expense. With every AMG appearance accessory available in 1984, this car must have cost at least double that of a 500 SEC off the showroom floor. With such limited information in the ad, it isn’t too clear if this car has the engine upgrades to back up the stunning looks. Either way this beautiful India Red over tan 500 SEC is the stuff dreams were made of in 1984.

Year: 1984
Model: 500 SEC AMG
Engine: 5.4 liter V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 3,300
Price: $62,500

Mercedes-Benz 500 SEC AMG Widebody


Full AMG steel wide body, 5.4 litre quad cam, four valve motor, every AMG option available.

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This is certainly a rare car to say the least, as AMG cars of this era were custom ordered out of a catalog. This is in contrast to buying a full AMG car right off the lot as you can today. With 3,300 original miles, the all steel widebody, and AMG parts galore, this car certainly commands a high dollar price tag….but $62,500? That may be a little too high. Considering a mint 500 SEC is valued at $24,000 on the high side, it’s tough to justify a full $40,000 premium for the AMG treatment. If this car had the legendary DOHC 6.0L I think the potential could be there, however, with the 5.4 V8, I’d be more interested in this car in the $40,000 to $45,000 range.