The 280 SL line, designed by Mercedes-Benz design studios head Paul Bracq, was acclaimed as a technological tour de force at its debut in 1967. The 280 SL was the last iteration of the SL Pagoda design, and the 1971 model was the last of its line, ending production in March of that year with only 830 units produced
Innovative features include independent front suspension, rare four-wheel disc brakes and a 2.8 L inline-six with Bosch fuel injection to provide 170 hp for the American market version.
Although SL stood for Sport Leicht, or Sports Lightweight, the 280 SL was designed to be solid and safe as well as sporty. While its hood, deck lid and door skins were made of aluminum, the SL’s solid unibody construction could withstand a 100 kg load, and it was the first sports car in the world to have a rigid passenger cell and front and rear crumple zones.
The last of the hand-built Mercedes-Benz, the 280 SL Pagodas are rising in value as collector interest grows in this refined yet versatile sports car. The bucket seats are comfortable, and the 4-speed automatic transmission offers a sporty driving dynamic, even for a fifty-year old car. And, just like all other Mercedes-Benz vehicles, the design is useful, while the build is impeccable.
This exciting Mercedes-Benz 280 SL is no exception to style, handling and safety. The 2.8-liter M130 inline-6 is equipped with Bosch fuel injection and was factory rated at 170 horsepower. Power is routed to the rear wheels via a 4-speed automatic transmission. The uninterrupted spot welds in the engine bay are a testament to its authenticity.
In 2015, the car was restored to its original color of Dark Maroon (460G), as evidenced by its body tag attached under the hood. This tag also shows the body number, 07558, again stamped on the underside of the hood, as seen in the photos. All numbers are matching, including the engine with a 130 983 prefix.
The locking gas cap is new old stock. Door gaps are excellent, and the body panels are laser-straight. The undercarriage is nice with some signs of surface oxidation noticeable on the exhaust system. The car was recently serviced by a Mercedes mechanic with all fluids changed.
The paint still shows nicely, and exterior details include gleaming chrome trim and a split rear bumper. The color-matched Pagoda hard top with heated window is removable, and a brown soft top is included.
The interior was also refreshed in 2015 with new proper Cognac MB-Tex interior and brown square-weave carpets, both in excellent condition. A matching dashboard and door panels complete the luxurious yet practical design. The OEM seat belts are Kangol 3-point belts.
A wood-rimmed Nardi steering wheel in excellent condition frames VDO instrumentation including a 7k-rpm tachometer, a 140-mph speedometer and a vertically-oriented auxiliary gauge cluster. The brightwork is exceptional, and all lights and gauges are crystal-clear and work well. The 5-digit odometer displays 81,515 miles. A tool roll is also included.
The Becker Grand Prix AM/FM stereo and original clock work well, and the Frigiking air conditioning blows cold. Several original manuals are included:
Service records over the past year, including upgrades and service by the current owner, totaling over $10,000 are available.
Steel 14″ wheels wear body-colored wheel covers and are wrapped in brand-new Travelstar Radials installed in 2022, less than 500 miles ago. A full-sized spare is housed in the trunk, and factory equipment includes four-wheel power disc brakes as well as optional power steering to make this Mercedes a dream to drive.
Impeccable build, smooth drive and stunning looks: this rare classic Mercedes is sure to appreciate and showcases the best of the Mercedes-Benz line. You’ll be proud to take it anywhere.