Anyone here drive a 280SL? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-12-2004, 08:13 PM Thread Starter
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Anyone here drive a 280SL?

I'm looking into getting one, is this a good car to start with? I mean in the Mercedes Classic category? Should I get a 4 door first?

2009 C63 AMG Silver/Charcoal
1970 280SE Low Grill Coupe 2.8 Silver/Red

1999 SLK230/Sport
2001 SLK32 AMG
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-12-2004, 09:52 PM
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RE: Anyone here drive a 280SL?

No matter what you buy - 2 door or 4 door it will be of quality. The 2.8L I6 SOHC or DOHC are literally bomb proof and offer pleasing response.

Get a 4 door if you want an imposing sedan or a 2 door if you want something desirable!

When buying these cars I call it the Mercedes tristar of problems. Each spoke represents something:

1) Mechanical
2) Body
3) Interior

In my shopping experience, and I have looked at about 100 70's Mercedes looking for my 2 - most of them have pleasing interiors and are solid mechanically. Be weary of the bodies. I would have a body man look at it before purchasing it.

My 4.5: Excellent Interior, Excellent Body, Used to burn oil

My 450: Interior needed leather dye but great condition, Floor pan needed rust repeairs, excellent engine

If something is wrong you can pick them up for cheap, if not you will pay more. I can't stress being paranoid of the bodies enough to you.

Other than that, great choice! If something gets fixed it stays fixed for a long, long time. I swear by them and do not believe I will ever own a newer Mercedes.

Good luck and let me know what you decide!

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-12-2004, 11:49 PM
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RE: Anyone here drive a 280SL?

It's a great car. Sporty, fun to drive, turns heads, and an appreciating collectible. Beware of rust, especially the underbody, it's expensive to repair. Be sure it's mostly complete. Parts can be expensive, but are readily available. Most parts are even available new, for a price. Take your time shopping for one, there are many available. Just don't buy without an inspection and road test. I also highly recommend the following internet W113 clubs as a great resource for owners. and

Good luck,
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-20-2005, 12:24 PM
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RE: Anyone here drive a 280SL?

YES ! I drive a 1983 280SL (107 chassis). Its a great car. It has been my dream car for years, and last year I finally scored it. It is not the fastest roadster. But its mechanics are far simpler than the V8 counterparts. Although it is not very good in gas mileage, it also is better than the V8 in this aspect as well.

In my opinion the 107 is not only the nicest Mercedes ever. It is the nicest automobile in history. Well... my taste. It is VERY solid, like all mercedes. I doesn twist with the top off. Its a real automobile, and has no comparison with these tiny jap roadsters.

Go for it. You will love the car. Try to find a good one. Remember two things :

- a cheap mercedes may end up very expensive.
- an everyday running benz, is way better than those stored-for-years in a garage car.

Yes, I was taken by the Mercedes-Benz virus. I also have a 1996 C180 (202 chassis), and now I'm looking into a 1973 230/6 (114), that a guy might trade with me against my Honda XR200 dirt bike...

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-20-2005, 01:01 PM
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RE: Anyone here drive a 280SL?

A 113 280SL would be a brilliant foray into the world of classic Mercedes. Parts availability is still good, convertibles command premium prices, and the car is pure joy to behold and to drive. Nice interior, little or no rust would be great -- the rest is negotiable. Good luck!

"If spending money you don't have is the height of stupidity, borrowing money to give it away is the height of insanity." -- anon
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-07-2011, 12:38 PM
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Vehicle: 1983 280SL 5-Speed; 01 Jag XKR; 03 Mini S Werks; 07 Tuscani Elisa 2.7SC; 81 Fiat 2000 Pininfarina
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I have an 83 280SL with 244,000 miles on it. Runs like a top. Just change the fluids per spec; perform good preventive maint and change parts out at life cycle (double timing chain is the way to go), front end bushings, etc.
Still goes as it should and as pretty as anything ever turned out.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-07-2011, 02:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Norb View Post
I'm looking into getting one, is this a good car to start with? I mean in the Mercedes Classic category? Should I get a 4 door first?
I think you need to clarify which 280 SL you mean. I assumed you meant the 280 SL produced from 1968 - 1972 and NOT the later 107 body cars....

Currently: 1967 250 SL, 1963 220Sb, 1965 300SE Lang, 1971 280SE parts car, 1972 Alfa GTV, 1965 Alfa Duetto, 1993 BMW R100R
Past: 1971 250 C, 1985 300 TD, 1967 250 S, 1968 280 S,1981 300 D, 1982 280CE, 3 Facel Vegas, Borgward Isabella Coupe, Alfa 2600 Sprint, Volvo P1900 (yes), numerous less interesting Volvos, ...
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-07-2011, 07:59 PM
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I was originally in the market for a 113 280SL but eventually deceided on a 111 3.5 2dr coupe. They cost about the same, can carry 4 or 5, larger and have a V8. They can even be found with a stick shift if you look long enough(like I did)

280SE 3.5 Coupe
Stick shift
3.27 Axle
5.6 Iron block build in progress
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