Rally anyone?: ’69 Mercedes-Benz 280SE
From the Mercedes-Benz Club Buyer’s Guide: Stylist Paul Bracq rose to the challenge of designing stylish luxury cars on the same chassis and wheelbase as the sedans not only by smoothing the top of the rear fender and eliminating the fin, but also by subtly rounding the lines over the top front fender and slightly reducing the height of the distinctive vertical radiator. With the freedom afforded by the lack of rear doors, Bracq removed the B-pillar and increased the C-pillar and rear window angles, lines that generally echoed in the convertible top. Inside, the changes were more obvious. Instead of the vertical speedometer and utilitarian instrument panel, the coupes and cabrios had sporty round speedometers and tachometers on either side of a central stack of telltale gauges. Moreover, there was considerably more wood inside, a luxury amenity for the day, now a challenge for restorers. Extensive hand finishing assured high quality on these prestige cars. We usually pass on featuring cars with below standard pictures but it isn’t often to see a ’69 280SE Coupe with a factory 4-speed manual on the floor. That to us, is the holy grail of 6-cylinder Coupes. What a great event car this would make even if the cosmetics aren’t perfect. The mechanicals are robust although parts are easily available, they can be expensive. The Coupes have a lot more wood inside and it can be expensive to get presentable if it isn’t already. The asking price is $23,500 and it has to be a really decent car for that kind of money. But these are virtually hand-built cars and if it hasn’t been damaged or manhandled, it could be a keeper. Click here for the Craigslist ad.