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First shown at the 1954 New York International Auto Show alongside the 300 SL Gullwing, the 190 SL was the brainchild of US Mercedes-Benz importer Max Hoffman. Similar in appearance to the 300, yet less complex and costly, the 190 SL – SL standing for Sport Leichtbau (Sport Lightweight) – offered a sporting character without racing pretensions. Using proven mechanical components from the Ponton line, the 190 SL was powered by an SOHC 1.9-liter four-cylinder with twin Solex carburetors. Other highlights included a four-speed manual gearbox, independent suspension, and hydraulic drum brakes. Internally designated W121, the productionready 190 SL debuted at Geneva in March 1955. By the time production concluded in 1963, a total of 25,881 examples had been built.
This 1961 190 SL was reportedly purchased new by an American physician while he resided in Alicante, in Spain’s Costa Blanca resort area. He subsequently brought the car to Texas, where it remained until 2014. A complete nut-and-bolt rotisserie restoration was performed by marque experts during 2015–2016, addressing both cosmetics and mechanical systems and detailing throughout. A recently and beautifully restored example in its original Black (DB 040) color over an interior trimmed in all-new original-type red leather, and equipped with rebuilt instruments and a Becker Europa radio, this 190 SL is ready to be shown on the field or enjoyed on the open road.