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1970 Mercedes Benz 280SE Cabriolet

Magnificent Original Colors. Desirable P/W, Console Shift Automatic, and Functioning Behr A/C. Exceedingly Comfortable, Practical, and Elegant.

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VIN 111.025-12-003854
Exterior Color Metallic Grey (172 G)
Interior Color Red Leather
Mileage 89443 Miles
Engine 2.8 Litre Inline 6 Cylinder no. 130.980-12-028119
Transmission Automatic Floor Shift
Status Sold
Stock FJ2132


1970 Mercedes Benz 280SE Cabriolet
s/n 111025.12.003854, Engine no. 130980.12.028119
Metallic Grey with Red Leather Interior

After more than a century of innovation, great design, and superlative performance, Mercedes-Benz continues to amaze both collectors and enthusiasts alike with their remarkable achievements. Decades of racing and luxury refinement from the 50s and 60s seamlessly grew into a prolific 1970s US market bringing exciting models to both new and dedicated customers. Introduced in late 1961, the W111-Series 280SE was a clean and handsome design, offered in both coupe and convertible form. The 280SE Cabriolet, however, was immediately appealing to customers seeking quality workmanship and bespoke accessories, but also looking for a bit of pleasure in open touring.

The body was designed with a clean and unified grille, carrying both tradition and freshness to the new look. Under the hood, technical advancements included a Bosch fuel-injected overhead-cam in line six cylinder engine, designed to deliver reliable but brisk performance. Technical details included 4 wheel disc brakes, comfortable handling (attributed to its coil-sprung independent suspension), and a welcome series of convenience options. These highly sought after models are a welcome offering to the collector who seeks motoring pleasure, comfort, and prestige in a very drivable, open touring car.

This wonderful 280SE Cabriolet was completed at the Stuttgart-based Mercedes-Benz factory on October 22, 1969 in the correct colors (Metallic Grey, 172 G) currently on the car. Delivered new to US market “Autobahn Motors” in Trenton, New Jersey, the first owner had the car carefully serviced per the original owners service booklet included with the car. Service and first ownership continued through 1985 with a documented chain of mileage ending at 59,214. The car next departed to Marietta, GA where it was serviced until 1990 with 68,592 miles. The last service notation on the original service booklet is logged in 2006 with 81,990 miles. Today the car shows 89,450 miles, consistent with the documentation, current records of service, and ownership history.

The current owner has owned the car for the past eight years, having acquired it shortly after a rather comprehensive restoration. This cabriolet has been treated to leisurely drives, with carefully services performed under his ownership. Records showing service to the fuel injection system, regular tune-ups and fuel service, throughout the either year period. Of particular and recent note is the new A/C compressor, and A/C clutch (83,406), new shocks (83,302), new front and rear brake pads and rotors, valve adjustment and timing (85,015), a complete distributor and coil (85,915), and radiator recore, with new thermostat, hoses, and general service (88,315).

Today this 280SE Cabriolet presents very nicely with high quality paint and handsome luster throughout. The paint was applied with care to all inner surfaces, edges, corners, and trim, with the only significant blemish appearing near the right headlight cluster, accompanied by mild evidence of road use over the years of ownership. The doors shut with an excellent snap, while the hood and trunk show excellent closures and fine panel gaps. All chrome appears in very good to excellent condition, showing some light patina and one small imperfection along one of the upper bumper over-riders. Both front and rear bumper rubber show no excessive marks or warpage. Of particular note is the very nicely finished and detailed grille. All lenses, lighting, and glass are in excellent condition with no significant marks on the windshield. The convertible top is beautifully tailored, tight, and clean with a clear and taut rear window. The factory wheel covers are properly finished with matching silver paint, accenting against nicely polished stainless. The silver metallic exterior, contrasted with the red interior create a stately presence, enhanced by the handsome mellowing finishes which unify the overall condition of the car.

The interior is beautifully finished using correct and high quality materials, displaying excellent fit and finish just as it left the factory. The leather seats are supple and nicely bolstered with excellent sheen and proper piping lines. The matching red carpeting is in very nice condition, showing no significant wear marks, tight fitting, properly stitched edge-beading, and just a hint of use in the driver’s footwell. The steering wheel is beautifully presented with no cracks in the rim, nicely padded centerpiece, and a smooth chrome horn ring. The dash is quite nice showing excellent wood, clear lacquer, and splendidly detailed instrumentation throughout. Door panels and rear seating continue the theme of excellence with great fit, tight presentation, and smooth finish. All switches, knobs, and various controls operate smoothly with excellent cosmetic presentation. This 280SE Cabriolet features the desirable floor shift automatic transmission and wonderful BEHR A/C mounted seamlessly into the center console. The trunk is properly finished with correct materials, spare tire, and proper tools.

Under the hood, the engine compartment and engine have been properly maintained and finished with correct factory finishes and proper hardware. Clearly serviced by professionals who pay close attention to correct Mercedes-Benz parts and service guidelines, the engine appears well finished and correctly appointed, but perhaps not as well details as the balance of the car.

The car starts easily, delivering a very smooth idle with no smoke at the tailpipe. Driving manners are wonderful in every respect. The composed, stately nature of this car is a genuine reflection of the superb ride engineering, advanced brakes, and suspension Mercedes-Benz delivered in their vehicles. Mechanically the car performs as one might expect, offering smooth and composed power delivery and leisurely touring , and solid braking. The undercarriage and chassis components are well maintained, clean and properly presented, showing only one small ½” hole appearing at the drivers footwell corner when viewed from underneath the car. There is no evidence of structural compromises to the car. The car is offered with a complete set of factory literature, original reference pamphlets, tools, jacking equipment, top boot cover, Becker radio manual, and records for recent service.

Presented in its original color combination, this Mercedes-Benz 280SE Cabriolet is a handsome, sophisticated, open-touring car with all the prestige and distinction in a very drivable package. Comfortable for four passengers and room for an ambitious fifth occupant in the rear seat, ample trunk space for outings, golf bags, or long distance travel, this cabriolet offers enthusiasts a comfortable yet commanding vehicle ready for leisurely enjoyment.


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Fantasy Junction +1 510 653 7555 Emeryville, California 94608 USA

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