Lot 243 - 1966 Mercedes-Benz 230 SL Pagoda
|Odometer reading||81,843 km|
|Estimate||£58,000 - £66,000|
|Result||Sold - £63,840|
The Mercedes-Benz W113 is a two-seat roadster/coupé, introduced at the 1963 Geneva Motor Show and produced from 1963 through to 1971. It replaced both the legendary 300 SL (W198) and the 190 SL (W121). The W113 SL was developed under the auspices of Mercedes-Benz Technical Director Fritz Nallinger, Chief Engineer Rudolf Uhlenhaut and Head of Styling Friedrich Geiger. The lead designers devised its distinctive, patented, slightly concave hardtop which inspired the 'Pagoda' nickname. All models were equipped with an inline-six cylinder engine with multi-port fuel injection. The bonnet, boot lid, door skins and tonneau cover were made of aluminium to reduce weight. The comparatively short and wide chassis, combined with an excellent suspension, powerful brakes and radial tyres gave the W113 superb handling for its time. The styling of the front, with its characteristic upright Bosch headlights and simple chrome grille, dominated by the large three-pointed star in the nose panel, paid homage to the then already legendary 300SL roadster. Although often overshadowed by the 280SL, the 2.3 litre engine runs on four crankshaft main bearings instead of seven, resulting in a more free revving power source with greater versatility. This made the 230SL ideal for rallies and touring with Mercedes-Benz entering three rallies in period with Pagodas and used 230SLs in all of them, including a victory in the gruelling 6,600km Spa-Sofia-Liège Rally in 1963.
This stunning lefthand drive 230SL with automatic gearbox is immaculately presented in jet black with ivory interior. Imported in good original condition from the U.S. in 2010, it has been well maintained and comes with the original Becker radio. In 2014, the current owner employed the marque specialist Britwell Autos, to thoroughly prepare the car for reliability, performance and comfort. The car was to be tested and retested until faultless. The reason for this exacting requirement was that the owner had offered his son the use of the car to tour Italy on a three week honeymoon. During the trip the car, affectionately named Freida, encountered everything from slow moving traffic in the extreme heat of summertime Florence, long drives in Tuscany and gruellingly steep climbs high up into the Dolomite mountains. It performed faultlessly throughout the memorable trip attracting attention from onlookers and car enthusiasts alike.
Extensive work was carried out in 2014 and included a full service, new radiator and hoses, new timing chain, complete overhaul of the brakes, new kingpins and overhaul of suspension and steering to achieve perfectly smooth and accurate driving, servicing the gearbox and fine adjustment to sensors as well as re-conditioning both the alternator and starter motor. After the Italian honeymoon tour, the car was professionally stored in Italy until August 2015 prior being driven from Milan to the UK by the vendor. The journey involved effortlessly crossing the steep Swiss mountains and enjoying long drives through Germany and France to arrive at the vendor's home in Oxfordshire with the car, once again, operating faultlessly.
Since returning from Italy, although the car was free of any damage and without any visible corrosion, the fastidious vendor decided to bring the paintwork back up to perfect condition. In early 2016, the car's bodywork was completely prepared and all paintwork refinished to the original Mercedes-Benz colour specification using the latest paint materials and lacquers to achieve an exceptional standard of presentation. The car comes with a detailed history file containing several invoices to support the extensive expenditure of substantial mechanical works, V5C registration document, a full years' MoT (with no advisories) a factory hardtop, spare wheel and cover, travelling small spares kit, dust cover, a Mercedes-Benz 230SL handbook and a certificate of authentication issued on 5th May 2010 by the Homologation Department of Mercedes-Benz UK Limited. This is one of the best presented and well-prepared Pagoda's we have had the pleasure of offering and is the perfect car to enjoy the delights of European touring adventures.