FOR SALE: 1971 Mercedes-Benz 280S

Description by seller:
Used as a daily driver and improved over the last two years. Although the odometer says 50 000 it is impossible to tell if it is 150 000 or 250 000km because there is no service record, but there are books and an original workshop manual in perfect condition. She has fantastic throttle response and doesn't use a drop of oil or water, and is amazingly economical thanks to optimal tuning and the four-on-the-floor gear change, which is lovely to use and feels like new. You can drive in the right-hand lane of the Ben Schoeman all the way. Fuel tank serviced. She has a front-to-back stainless-steel exhaust system of the correct diameter which gives a great exhaust note with the window open and the straight six. Apparently exhaust pipe diameter on these is critical. Differentials on W108s are noisy but this one is still good, giving credence to the 150 000km true mileage possibility. She has just had a full service including new brake pads all round and master cylinder service, and a tune-up and new handbrake cable.

The paintwork is original except for the two front mudguards and the left rear door, which were blown over. Everything dead straight and original. Doors, boot, and bonnet close like new. Unrestored and very well looked after. New (good quality) shock absorbers, newish Dunlop tyres, new control arms, new sub-frame mounts. Power steering is rebuilt (R12 000) and feels absolutely perfect. There is a soft "cluck" of some sort when you are maneuvering that needs be sorted out but it seems to come and go.

Unfortunately the original seats had to be re-covered because the original owner must have had dogs or something. The new leather was commissioned from Hannitan Leather and is of the finest quality in the world. Being brand new it needs to be worn in to give it lustre. The perforations are the first in SA to have a close match to the original diamond perforation.

The engine bay is probably as good as an unrestored 50-year-old engine bay can be. Even the battery bracket is original and perfect (with one small repair) and the original distributor and coil covers are still there. Amazingly, the concertina air filter duct, although brittle, is still intact. Bonnet-spring rubbers are still perfect. Rare absence of under-bonnet battery-acid damage - the engine bay could quite easily be pimped to outstanding or even concours if somebody had the time because nothing is missing or needs to be fixed.

The interior is very original. The interior fan doesn't come on. (It was working perfectly then stopped. Apparently on these it's unlikely that the fan itself is buggered.) Also, the clock doesn't work but apparently there is someone who does these. In a downpour the wipers are a low-and-high-speed experience to behold, and you have a button at your foot well for a single sweep. The pre-select radio is not a period-correct Becker but is a vintage Becker nonetheless, and plays RSG through speakers front and back. The dashboard top is immaculate and original with a hairline repair behind the binnacle on the right-hand side that you have to look for to find. The dash woodwork is original and excellent, with a great patina. The wooden "bow" at the windscreen has been refurbished, looks good and is commensurate with the general interior condition, as are the restored wooden strips around the door window frames which are all intact, with a lovely gleam. In general a well-preserved and nicely repaired-where-necessary original interior.

This car is available to view by appointment in Johannesburg.

Reminders to bidders: A buyer's premium of 5% (which includes VAT) for cars and bikes applies.
The minimum buyer's premium is R5 000 incl. VAT for cars and bikes (eg. if R50 000 is bid, buyer's premium = R5 000 and total cost = R55 000).
The maximum buyer's premium is capped at R100 000 incl. VAT for cars and bikes (eg. if R3 000 000 is bid, buyer's premium = R100 000 and total cost = R3 100 000).

Classic Car Africa aims to present each lot as accurately as possible but it is the responsibility of the bidder to be 100% satisfied with the condition of the lot before placing a bid.

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