Auctions and Brokerage
*Please note this vehicle is titled 003817. Please also note that the sale of this lot is accompanied by the car’s original document pouch, which contains an extensive selection of period manuals and receipts.
The 220 SE
Representing the ultimate expressions of the W128 “Ponton” series, the Mercedes-Benz 220 SE Coupe and Cabriolet debuted in 1958 and 1959 respectively. Produced through October 1960, they exuded pure sophistication with clean styling, restrained bright trim, and exquisite hand-built interiors. Just 1,942 examples were produced including 1,112 cabriolets.
Priced at a lofty $8,091 when new, the glamorous 220 SE Cabriolet was, and remains, appreciated today for its sophisticated mechanical specifications, including fuel injection, a four-speed gearbox, and fully independent suspension. Impeccable Mercedes-Benz build quality and the Cabriolet’s top-down smoothness of line remain other enduring virtues.
A one-owner example with fascinating known history from new, this 1960 Mercedes- Benz 220 SE Cabriolet was purchased new in Copenhagen, Denmark, by a law-school graduate from Oregon, who drove it on a 14-month pan-European adventure and imported the car to the US in the early 1960s. Thereafter, the Mercedes-Benz was driven in the Pacific Northwest and used on a honeymoon trip through Canada as well. During the later 1960s, the car was repainted in British Racing Green. The original owner recently explained that she simply did not care for the original light blue when she bought the 220 SE Cabriolet. The special Mercedes-Benz, which acquired the nickname “Charlie,” was placed into storage shortly after its registration was renewed in 1971, and it has not been run since. Nonetheless, it remained in the garage of the family home in Bend, Oregon, and after that home was sold and the owner moved out of state in the mid-1990s, the car was transferred to a storage unit.
At the time of a recent viewing, the vehicle’s odometer read just over 54,000 miles. Impressively intact, the 220 SE is lacking the two front fender-mounted turn-signal lenses, the Mercedes-Benz emblem atop the radiator shell, and the driver’s side mirror; however, the mirror’s mounting stem remains in place. The windshield is cracked and the engine may be seized. The body appears solid and the interior is complete with leather upholstery that is still intact with only limited wear. The burl wood interior trim, while requiring refinishing, is intact. The trunk retains a jack, spare wheel, and factory tool kit, plus all four of the car’s hubcaps. The vehicle is accompanied by one set of three original keys to operate all locks, and copies of the vehicle data card listing the vehicle’s specifications and optional features. With single ownership from new and fascinating early history including its earliest use on a European tour, this rare and highly desirable 220 SE Cabriolet represents an excellent restoration candidate in today’s exceptionally robust classic Mercedes-Benz marketplace.