1967 Mercedes 300SE Cabriolet
Offered for sale is an absolutely stunning, rare, numbers matching, late production W112 300SE Cabriolet finished in desirable and factory correct Black (Paint Code DB 040) over Red. Utilizing an engine assembled from components built for the storied 300SL and a two-position air ride suspension, the 300SE was truly the pinnacle of the Mercedes line through much of the 1960s, offering a magnificent combination of luxury, styling and performance, along with technical specifications better than any other car of its era. Only 708 300SE Cabriolets were built between 1961 and 1967, and it’s believed that fewer than 100 of those cars were Series II models (built between August, 1965 & December, 1967) which used the improved and more powerful M189.987 engine. Furthermore, because a steering column-mounted automatic transmission was standard, the much-preferred “floor shift” option, Kuhlmeister air conditioning and an uncommon and sought-after original color combination make this a rare 300SE indeed.
This car was purchased new in Southern California, driven by a Hollywood producer until he traded it in for a new 300SEL 6.3 in 1970. The second owner purchased the car from Mercedes Benz of Los Angeles and was in his ownership for the last 42 years. He moved to Napa in the 1980s and then later to Nevada a few years ago. Consequently, the car has a clear Nevada title. He always used the car as a weekend cruiser or for special events and he always kept it garaged and maintained, resulting in the stunning, mechanically sound, completely rust-free example offered here today.
The exterior is in excellent condition, the black finish deep and lustrous with only minor imperfections, none of which are significant enough to appear in any of the pictures. The body is straight and retains excellent panel fits and gaps, without any breaks in the car’s stunning lines. All of the chrome is in excellent original condition, a soft ding to the driver’s side front bumper and two to the rear bumper the only noticeable imperfections. The glass and rubber are in great shape, as are the wheels and hubs, wrapped in thin-white-wall tires with plenty of remaining tread. The flawless soft top was recently replaced using correct German material and it tastefully offsets the black finish nicely. The interior is equally presentable, the rich red seats and panels in good shape and showing a nice patina and the carpets are completely original without any noticeable stains or tears. The beautiful dash wood inlays are in excellent condition, retaining a glossy finish, and the dash houses correct and fully functional gauges, controls and Becker radio. Housed below is a rare, fully functional dealer installed Kuhlmeister A/C unit and all of the power windows are fully functional from their door-mounted switches.
Still powered by its original engine, the car has 101k original miles and runs famously, due in part to extensive servicing at a reputable independent Mercedes shop less than 400 miles ago that yielded a total bill of nearly $12,000 worth of parts and labor. A copy of the repair bill can be forwarded on request, but to summarize, in addition to a typical tune-up, the air suspension, brakes, air conditioning, and fuel injection were all gone through. Starting up immediately and idling smoothly, the car shifts without effort and the legendary engine pulls strongly through each of the gears. The air suspension works as it should, giving the car its trademark soft, floating ride quality that firms up when necessary, minimizing body lean in corners. The car drives and stops straight and true – the drive as good or better than any other W112 we’ve come across.
To reiterate: Only 708 of these gorgeous convertibles were ever produced, fewer than the 280 SE 3.5 and even than the 300SL with whom it shares a majority of its power-plant. Moreover, less than 100 Series II convertibles were produced, making this an extremely rare opportunity to own one of the most exclusive luxury convertibles ever built. With 280SE 3.5 Cabriolets selling for outrageously high numbers (as high as $170k+), 6 cylinder “Low Grill” Cabriolets firmly above $100k and all other W111 Cabriolet values being brought along for the proverbial ride, this 300SE – far rarer than any of the other models – represents an excellent collector car value that’s guaranteed to realize continued appreciation. If you’ve been looking for an exceptional “Heckflosse” convertible, this car deserves your serious attention.