An expensive toy for a rich collector who appreciates that the car didn’t go through a complete restoration is the best way to describe this 300 SL Gullwing.
Manufactured in July 1955, it had an in an Ivory (DB 608) painted bodywork with a Red leather (1079) interior. It's recorded in the Gull Wing Group and Eric LeMoine 300 SL Registers and, unlike the majority of US-delivery Gullwings, which were imported through Max Hoffman in New York City, this one was sent west for a special order through the brand's LA distributor.
One of its long-term owners was Ottmar Thomas of Visalia, from California, who had the car in his possession between 1972 and 1990, when it was bought by Paul Russell & Company. Before being sold to its present owner, racing driver and Mercedes-Benz restorer Lothar Motsenbacher, it was repainted in the Silver (DB 180) color, which it retains and comes with the usual chips and cracking expected from age.
The engine bay in which the 3.0-liter inline-six sits is described as having "the correct patina" and the bumper and chrome grille were re-plated, while the rest of the chrome is original.
"Aged" is a word that can used to describe the cabin, too, as the Roser leather on the seats shows the usual wear but "is not cracked or split", at least according to the seller. In the boot, this classic Merc sports the correct full-sized spare and tire along with a jack.
This 300 SL Gullwing will go under the hammer at RM Sotheby's Arizona auction on January 28 and is expected to sell for anywhere between $1,1 million to $1,5 million.
Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing Will Make Someone Empty His Vault