Date registered: Feb 2008
Vehicle: 2004 W220 (S430) ; 2001 R129 (SL500) Sport
Location: Alabama Gulf Coast--formerly Charlottesville, VA
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The W109 came in 4.5l, and 6.3 liter flavors if memory serves. There may have been a few six cylinder versions imported, but I think they were before the '72 model year. The W109 was different from the W108 in trim and suspension fitment mostly--it was the more luxurious version and had the air suspension you see collapsed in your pictures. W108's are simpler mostly because they have conventional suspension systems, but are a bit less desirable because they are more common. I recall there was a whopping price differential between them as new cars.
There is a web site for W108/W109 owners. If you google "W109" or "W108" you should find it. Those good folks can tell you pretty exactly what you are facing for repair/restoration costs if the suspension is the only consequential problem the car has. A fuel pump is a simple repair and the part isn't hideously expensive (it's electric and located by the fuel tank) if that's the start-engine problem.
You could certainly part the car out and make back way more than $300 if you decided to take the old girl off the road. IMO, the W108/109 is the best-looking "classic" Mercedes style, and it would be a pity to see one parted out if a little TLC and a few dollars would keep it showing off. The pictures you posted seem to show pretty good cosmetic condition. If I had the choice you do, I'd buy the car, work it back into driver condition and then make a decision to either restore it or sell it as a driver. It's probably worth north of $8000 in reasonable mechanical condition if the cosmetics are like they seem. Either way, getting this car for $300 seems like a no-brainer.
"Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you."--John Steinbeck