230 / 250 / 280 SL under $20k - market not so strong? - Page 2 - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-25-2012, 09:32 AM
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There are a lot of 113s for sale these days, that's for sure, but good cars, really good cars, still bring pretty strong money. I've been a part of three W113 sales in the past year, all on eBay. These were expertly restored cars, by a place that has done 20+ 113 restorations over the years. No corners cut, presented with 100 photos in the listing, etc.

All three were 280SLs, all automatics. They brought between $48,000 and $56,000. What I thought was very strong money, even for cars restored to such a high level.

"Full Restoration" might mean different things to different people, people throw that term around far too loosely in their classified ads. There are restorations, then there are correct restorations. There are a lot of bad 'totally restored' W113s out there.

Two of the cars mentioned above were shipped to European buyers... that is part of it, the global market and European collector's interest in getting a solid U.S. car at quite a discount from continental retail prices.

The thing that, I believe, will allow the 113s to endure is that in the end, they're just good cars. They're good tour cars, they're reliable, they handle well, they're relatively comfortable, they feel modern beyond their age. You can really take them out and have fun driving them with other vintage car enthusiasts and chances are you'll make it to where you're going and home again without a problem.

I think we'll look back on these mid $20k driver quality cars in 10 years and wish we all would have picked one up.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-27-2012, 06:22 AM
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Panzer, you raise a good point, the market fluctuates less for the best cars, and while the terms "#2 or #1 car" "restored" etc. are generally overused, buyers for the best cars know what the correct meaning is.

When you consider the era, the "Pagodas" stack up pretty well against most of their contemporaries especially if you discount true exotics - Ferraris of that era, for example are just at a different level of collecting. From a quality/dependability perspective, I would cross the country in a 280SL before attempting that in an E-Jag, for example. I think they will fair just fine over time - but hopefully not before we grab one of those "mid-$20K driver quality cars"!!.
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