1971 Mercedes 280SE 3.5 Coupe (two owner car complete history from new)
- Make: Mercedes-Benz
- Model: 200-Series
- Type: Coupe
- Trim: 3.5
- Year: 1971
- Mileage: 98,728
- VIN: 11102612003159
- Color: Red
- Engine size: v8
- Number of cylinders: 8
- Power options: Air Conditioning, Power Windows
- Fuel: Gasoline
- Transmission: Automatic
- Drive type: RWD
- Interior color: Tan
- Options: CD Player, Leather Seats
- Vehicle Title: Clear Want to buy? Contact seller!
1971 Mercedes-Benz 200-Series 3.5
1971 Mercedes 280SE 3.5 Coupe
This rust free numbers matching two owner car runs and drives excellent and is in great condition. One of the last hand-built production automobiles to come from Mercedes-Benz. Many astute collectors feel that 280SE 3.5 coupes are among the most collectible cars of the era.
Two Owner Car History From New: In 1971 I was four years old and our family bought Saga Hedlund’s 1967 250SE coupe as she was moving to Finland. Importing a used car into Finland was more expensive at the time than bringing in a new car so she bought this 1971 3.5 coupe new from European Motors LTD on 1740 Van Ness Ave San Francisco California and immediately had it shipped over to Finland. Saga kept extensive documents including the original sales person’s card and first trip permit, registrations and maintenance records as Saga and her husband Nils used the car (see photos). It is great to follow the history of the car from day one. The owner’s manual is the nicest one I have ever seen I don’t think it was ever touched till I pulled it out last week. Our family drove Saga’s 1967 250SE coupe for 17 years and it was one of the cars I learned to drive on. Fast forward 25years to 1996 and the 1971 3.5 coupe had returned to Oregon after Saga past away. I have owned the car since 1996 (21 years). Saga had the car painted in Finland from the original tobacco brown (423 H 1968-1971) to a lighter cream color, although it was a high quality paint job it was not my favorite color. I had the car painted to show quality standards in (571H) red. These cars were only built for a short period of time, less than two years from August 1969 to July 1971.This car was built in November 1970.Only 3,270 coupes were ever built. Designed by Paul Bracq this is one of Mercedes-Benz most elegant cars and has stood the test of time. It is the epitome of class and performance maintaining Mercedes’ famous quality and bank-vault feel on the road. This car has never been hit, never any rust, total history from new and is in amazing condition, a real pleasure to own and drive.
Engine & Transmission: The mechanics on this car are very well sorted. The automatic transmission shifts smoothly and the alloy M116 V-8 engine starts immediately and runs strong. The car has been maintained very well over the years and all of Saga’s maintenance records are the glovebox binder. All gauges work, turn signals, fog lamps, and lights work as they should. The car is responsive and nimble and enjoys long-distance cruising. The Bosch electronic fuel injection works excellent and the car runs strong. This is a great example that is ready to drive and enjoy.
Body: This rust free car has an extremely solid body and frame. The body is straight with no dents or waviness and has excellent gaps. The car has never been hit. All glass is in exceptional shape no chips or cracks. The driver side rear window has a scratch in it that must be from the power window mechanism as I have seen the exact same thing on several coupes in exactly the same place. The larger yellow fog lamps were mandatory in Finland for seeing Reindeer at night so they were installed when the car was new. I had the car painted (571H Red). The finish is superb, deep and lustrous and free of imperfections. I would grade the paint a 9 on a scale from 1-10. All the chrome is exceptional no pitting. The rubber is fresh (replaced when I had it painted) and all lenses are great. The trunk area is very nice and solid as well as the spare tire compartment and the bottom of the rear fenders have never had any rust. The trunk mat is original. original vented steel rims and hubcaps. This car has been stored in a temperature controlled garage all its life on both sides of the globe. It comes with the original 280SE-specific jack, tools, and correct vented steel rim spare tire. The underside is solid and untampered (see photos). I have taken great care owning this car over the years.
Interior: The beautiful original leather interior is very clean. The original hand-assembled level of quality is still very apparent when you sit in the car. The wood is in very good condition with some slight fading on the dash parts. The door skins are very nice as well as the armrests. The chrome bits in the interior are like new. All the gauges work as they should with exception of the clock. The radio is the correct original small chassis Becker that was fitted specifically for these coupes/cabs. The car has a 90’s Sony CD changer in the trunk and an FM transmitter in the front that taps into the original system, this was added in 1996 when the car came back to the states by Saga’s son. Fortunately careful attention was given to not cutting any holes so it could be removed without a trace. You often see an aftermarket stereo or incorrect Becker wedged into the dash of these cars. It is refreshing to see an original that has not been tampered with. The lovely black steering wheel is mint. The base of the driver seat was replaced, I have sourced an original 1971 3.5 coupe seat base (comes with sale) with the idea of replacing it but have not done so since the seat is comfortable and fine. Turn signals work as they should. The original carpet is great. Equipped with Behr air conditioning (standard on US 280SE 3.5 coupes) power steering, power brakes, and electric windows all work as they should. The headliner on this car is very nice. While the styling remains a design benchmark the coupe was engineered with safety and visibility in mind so when you’re driving this car there are no blind-spots which adds to the enjoyment of ownership. This car is easy to use in modern traffic and I never get tired of looking at the dash, it is a treat every time.
Interesting Note: In the documentation that came with the car there is an article on Saga and her husband Nils in the local Finland paper with a photo of them both standing next to the car on the front page. The article talks about how Steve McQueen drove Saga’s 3.5 coupe. I have always enjoyed knowing that he sat behind the wheel, it’s already a fun car to drive and this makes even more enjoyable.
Summary: This is asolid example of a classic Mercedes-Benz. These extremely comfortable tourers are considered highly usable classics continuing a tradition of handcrafted quality and superior engineering, Even cars twenty years newer will be hard-pressed to match the 280SE 3.5 for its quality, performance and unrivaled style. This example is perfect for cruising during the week and taking to car shows on the weekend, an exceptional numbers matching example with full documented history from new.
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I take great pride in my eBay rating and accurate description of this car. I reserve the right to end the auction early. Car is located in Portland Oregon and I invite all inspections prior to bidding.
I will contact the winning bidder via email after the auction ends. Car is sold as-is with no warranties express or implied.
I require an $1500 deposit (paypal or bank wire transfer) within 2 days. Balance is due (bank check or bank wire transfer only) within 7 days of auction end. Delivery upon funds clearing the bank.
The transport cost is the responsibility of the winning bidder, I will help with logistics.
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