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Lot 52

2013   |   Scottsdale Auctions 2014

1956 Mercedes-Benz 300 Sc Coupe

SOLD $550,000

Estimate

$500,000 - $700,000

Chassis

188.014.5500029

Engine

199.980.5500002

Car Highlights

One of Just 98 300 Sc Coupes Built
Thoroughly Restored to Concours Condition
Single Ownership for 30 Years
Presented with Dual Spares and Karl Baisch Fitted Luggage
Accompanied by Copy of Factory Build Record

Technical Specs

2,996 CC SOHC Inline 6-Cylinder Engine
Bosch Mechanical Fuel Injection
175 BHP at 5,400 RPM
4-Speed Manual Gearbox
4-Wheel Hydraulic Drum Brakes
4-Wheel Independent Suspension with Coil Springs and Tubular Shock Absorbers

Saleroom Addendum

*Please note that this car’s engine has been confirmed to be numbers-matching by the accompanying factory build record.

Register to Bid

The 300 Sc

Introduced as a four-door sedan and convertible sedan, the 300-Series Mercedes-Benz cars signaled a return to the prominence the company earned before the war. The 300 sedans were soon augmented by the even more exclusive 300 S at the October 1951 Paris Salon with coupe, roadster, and cabriolet coachwork. These luxurious, limited-production cars, generating 150 hp with a three-carburetor engine, were well received by both the motoring press and the upper echelons of the buying public.

To extract more power from the straight six, mechanical fuel injection was developed and, once proven, was retrofitted into the 300 S line to create 200 very special 300 Sc cars, introduced in 1955. The extremely limited number of 300 Sc cars were bodied by the craftsmen at Mercedes-Benz’s Sindelfingen coachworks in the finest old-world style, with incredibly intricate, hand-formed and fitted panels, copious use of chrome, intricate wood interior trim, and luxurious leather upholstery. Even though they weighed nearly 4,000 lbs., the Scs were capable of 112 mph, a speed that put them in the same performance league as the most expensive, limited-production gran turismos, even while enveloping their occupants in serene luxury.

This Car

This rare 300 Sc Coupe, built early in the model’s 98-car production run, was delivered new to an American buyer in two complementing shades of green. While little is known of its earliest years, the Sc was discovered in the mid-1980s in Minnesota, owned by a sugar beet farmer. Respected 300 Sc historian and restorer Chuck Brahms recalls negotiating the purchase with the farmer and noted the extremely rare rear seat configuration of a single jump seat opposite an open area, perfect for two sets of golf clubs.

Soon thereafter, still in need of a restoration, the Sc was purchased by a Southern California Mercedes-Benz enthusiast. The car was stored by the collector’s friend Robin Onsoien, proprietor of Early Motors in Nipomo, California, with the understanding that Mr. Onsoien would one day perform a concours-level restoration on the car for its owner. Following 20 years in clean, dry storage a full restoration was finally begun in 2007.

Early Motors utilized numerous California restoration specialists to bring the Sc back to its original splendor. Jack’s Upholstery of Santa Maria trimmed the Belgian-sourced hides and expertly installed the opulent tan headliner and carpets. Lesco Engines of San Luis Obispo rebuilt the engine, and scores of factory-correct parts were sourced from the Mercedes-Benz Classic Center in Irvine. Legendary Christensen Plating of Vernon renewed the myriad chrome components from both the interior and exterior with near-perfect results. Upon disassembly of the body panels, Early Motors discovered minor corrosion on the inner panels of the body and each area was expertly addressed prior to the body’s preparation for refinishing in an appropriate shade of metallic burgundy.

The assembly of an Sc is reputed to be one of the most challenging projects in automotive restoration; proper alignment of the complex door hinging arrangement is critical, and dictates the position of most other panels. Three separate wiring harnesses are used to power the Sc’s systems, and each is completely new. The engine bay is very well detailed, showing little sign of the scant 350 miles the coupe has covered since its restoration was completed. Beyond its rare rear seat configuration the 300 Sc is also equipped with SL-type alloy-rimmed wheels, dual spares, and two pieces of extremely scarce Karl Baisch fitted luggage in the trunk.

Not yet shown at a major concours since the completion of its five-year restoration, this stunning 300 Sc is sure to provide its next caretaker with a thrilling experience, both on the show field and on the road. As one of fewer than 100 of its kind, this is a Mercedes-Benz worthy of close inspection and thoughtful consideration.