Offered for sale is a beautiful, entirely solid, numbers matching 1963 Mercedes-Benz 220SE Cabriolet finished in White over a Red interior with the extremely rare and desirable rear bucket seat option. Owned for decades by a retired University of California San Francisco professor who lived in Santa Cruz, the car was purchased roughly five years ago by its current owner, a designer and businessman with homes in Beverly Hills, Palm Spring and Montecito. Throughout its 51 years of service and three owners, the car was always well looked after and enjoyed, resulting in the beautiful, largely original weekend driver offered here today.
Undeniably opulent but also perpetually tasteful with its wonderfully engineered mechanicals and swooping, graceful lines, the W111 represented the finest big cabriolet on the road in its day, both in terms of build quality and design. And in essence, that hasn’t changed. In terms of 4-seater cabriolets, not one other car comes to mind as having surpassed the W111 Cab in elegance and reliability. I suppose the argument could be made that the Rolls Royce Corniche (1971-1996) proved to be a worthy competitor, but in our humble opinion that car’s ostentatiousness and miserable cost of ownership considerably diminish its appeal. We feel the W111 is at the top of its class, and consequently demand for the model has always remained high and virtually guaranteed appreciation.
The car’s exterior is gorgeous, its white finish retaining tons of depth and luster, marred only by the most minimal of imperfections, none of which appear in any of the pictures. All of the glass and chrome is is good original condition, however both the front and rear bumpers do have a number of soft dings in them. The car’s tan canvas soft top shows virtually no signs of wear, the red boot cover is new and the wheels (with matching hubcaps) are wrapped in tires with plenty of remaining tread. The car’s interior is equally as clean, its rare bucket seats free of any noticeable wear and the interior panels showing only the mildest amount of appropriate patina. The carpets are in great shape, as the interior panels, and the dash wood has been refinished.
Mechanically the car is representative of Mercedes’ legendary reputation for longevity and thorough engineering. The matching numbers engine starts easily, idles smoothly and pulls cleanly and strongly through each of the gears. The car shifts easily, brakes smoothly and feels solid on the road, none of which should come as any surprise as it has always been meticulously maintained. Always garaged and driven in California, the car’s undercarriage and trunk are both entirely solid and free of any meaningful corrosion.
This is an excellent opportunity to acquire a beautifully presented, mechanically sound, numbers matching W111 “Heckflosse” (fin tail) Cabriolet with the extremely rare and desirable rear bucket seat option. Finished in timeless colors and having a well-cared-for California provenance, we see this as a wonderful weekend driver quality car that can be enjoyed as it continues to appreciate. If you’re in the market for a fairly priced, solid and beautiful W111 Cabriolet, this car certainly deserves your serious consideration.