Link to my Craiglist ad:
1996 Mercedes R129 SL320 For Sale - Private Owner
Will also post on eBay starting Monday 9/22.
For sale text:
1996 Mercedes-Benz R129 SL320 Roadster
For sale is our 2-owner 1996 SL320 with approx. 138,500 miles, an average of 7,700 miles/years. We have owned this car since Feb 2004, just over 10 years. We purchased the SL from the original owner in Arizona - this car has been in the Southwest and Southeast its entire life. We bought the car with 88,000 miles on it and have put 50,000 miles on it in 10+ years. I have maintenance records and receipts from the original owner and myself in a 3-ring binder. I am a Mercedes fanatic - all I own are Mercedes cars. I do most of the work myself to keep my cars in top condition both cosmetically and mechanically. I only use Mercedes OEM parts. Fluids are changed regularly - oil is Mobil 1 0W-40 and changed every 5,000 miles or so. This is my wife's daily driver. The car is ALWAYS garaged - at home or in the parking garage of my wife's office. I can count on 1 hand the number of times the car has been outside overnight.
The exterior paint is in excellent condition. You will not be disappointed with the quality of the paint finish. The interior is very well maintained. I have replaced some interior parts with NOS parts I acquired over the years to keep the car in new cosmetic condition, such as the entire burl wood center console, the flip up center armrest, the map pocket on the driver side door, speaker grill covers. Carpets are in overall very nice condition. The convertible top was replaced withe a GAHH top (OEM supplier to Mercedes) a few years ago and still is in excellent condition - the rear plastic windows are crystal clear. I also replaced the convertible top headliner, which is in new condition. Steering wheel is real burl wood/leather as is the matching burl wood/leather shift knob. Dash is excellent. Still has the original stereo head unit, original Bose amp/speaker system and trunk mounted CD changer that works very well. Car comes with the original wind screen (although the screen is getting old and has 3-4 small holes in the screen). Winning bidder will also get my spare brand new set of grey OEM floor mats still in the wrapper.
Mechanicals - I maintain my Mercedes to high mechanical standards. If you are interested in an SL with the 3.2L M104 engine, be aware that the lone weak item is the head gasket and front timing chain cover gasket - they are a guaranteed leak item until replaced with improved gaskets. This work was done a few years back on our SL. Front and rear suspensions have been well maintained with new parts as they wear, including the front shock strut bearings and lower control arms/ball joints. Car has Bilstein HD shocks all around. Brakes are in excellent new condition (rotors and pads). Transmission was rebuilt 3 years ago (15,000 miles) from normal wear and works very well. As mentioned above, I have receipts for the majority of parts purchased.
The car sports extremely rare and desirable AMG OZ Racing 3-piece modular wheels. Staggered wheels - 8.5 x 17 fronts and 10 x 17 rears with amazing deep dish/lips. I bought these wheels a few years ago and they are very special. Plus, there are NO CRACKS in the lug bolt holes. These wheels sell for $2,000 - $2,500 a set (with no cracks) all day long and are nearly impossible to find. Tires are Michelin Sport A/S and will need to be replaced in the next year (about 25% remaining fronts and 35% rears). Original spare wheel/tire in the trunk. I also sourced an extremely rare and original AMG exhaust from Japan. This is an original AMG unit specific to the R129 chassis. This exhaust is a two-in/two-out pipe design. My original SL320 exhaust was a single inlet pipe. To avoid a cludgy weld-up job, I sourced a new-take off center resonator exhuast from an SL600 (that has a full dual exhaust) so the AMG exhaust would be direct bolt-up. I have never seen another AMG exhaust in the US on an R129.
As mentioned above, the convertible top/headliner were replaced and installed by Bud's Benz (high-end shop outside Atlanta). If you are unfamiliar with the R129, a very well known maintenance issue are the 12 hydraulic cylinders that operate the soft top opening/closing and roll-bar extension and are a guaranteed eventual failure. The seals around each of the small hydraulic shafts fail and fluid leaks out. I personally replaced all 12 cylinders with rebuilt cylinders from Top Hydraulics. Top Hydraulics uses vastly improved seal materials that will last substantially longer than the MB original seals. At the dealer, replacement of all 12 cylinders is a $5,500 service. If you are in the market for an R129 SL, be sure to inquire about the soft top cylinders!
This SL comes with the original removable hard top - don't let anyone tell you that the hard tops were "optional" - that is a lie! I also replaced the headliner of the hard top with an OEM fresh headliner. The hard top comes with the cover and stand. The hard top is aluminum and doesn't weigh very much but does require two people to put on/take off.
The car was in a slight front-end shunt that damaged the front bumper cover, grill, MB star and bent the front of the hood. I insisted on brand new parts (not used parts and no repaired parts) - new front bumper cover, new grill, new star, new hood and hood pad. There was absolutely zero mechanical damage - purely cosmetic. You cannot tell the hood paint is not factory original to the rest of the car. I also had the rear bumper cover refinished at the same time "while it was there". This all happened about 3 years ago. So, the hood is not original but it is a new OEM Mercedes hood.
Known issues - the top of the driver door panel shows some elbow wear, the coolant temperature gauge wigs out and pegs - this is a gauge issue because you can thump the cluster and the needle returns to normal reading, the volume knob on the head unit is slow to respond to increasing volume (a known issue with this head unit), the windscreen has 3-4 small holes in it from wear, driver left seat bolster has slight wear (no hole - just grey color wear).
The SL was an $80,000 car in 1996. You may find some that are lower mileage, but you will not find a better maintained and cosmetically excellent SL. The very rare paint color coupled with the rare AMG wheels and AMG exhaust make this car very unique. This car looks and drives like new!
Shipping and taxes/registration is the borne by the Buyer. Due to the car's age and me not being a dealer, the car is sold As-Is. I will prepare a Bill of Sale. If you want to inspect the car, please send me a message via eBay and we will arrange a viewing. If you want an independent inspection by a shop, send me a message and we will arrange. I will be out of town Sept 21-26. My wife can show the car with advance notice.
Ask any questions in advance. Please do not bid if you are not serious! If you need additional pics or information, please ask.