A Late and Desirable Example of the Marque
Purchased new by film director Howard Hawks
Only Three Owners from New
Same Owner last 30 Years
USA Model with Unbroken Provenance
All Correct Engine, Gearbox, and Body
Estimate: $1.25M - $1.75M
A fully restored example with factory Rudge wheels, authentic fitted luggage, and Heritage Certification.
The 300SL Gullwing coupe produced between 1955-1957 was arguably the most-important sports car of the decade, designed by Mercedes-Benz technical director Rudolf Uhlenhaut as a production version of the 1952 Le Mans-winning 300SL coupe.
The Le Mans-winning 300SL represented Mercedes’ return to racing in post-war years. Uhlenhaut was limited by resources and insistence that any new racing or sports cars must share the engine and other components of the recently introduced 300 Series of large sedans, cabriolets and limousines. Fortunately, the 3.0-liter overhead-cam six-cylinder engine and 4-speed transmission designed for the hand-built luxury touring cars also proved to be ideal for more sporting purposes.
Creation of a production version of the 300SL coupe was strongly encouraged by Max Hoffman, Mercedes-Benz’s legendary New York importer. The automobile introduced to the public at the 1954 International Motor Sports Show in New York was the fastest production car in the world. Although production details varied in many notable areas from the successful racing cars, the Gullwing coupe maintained the unique overhead-opening doors of the race car – necessary to provide access to the interior over the wide sills of the tube-frame chassis.