Glamtastic Voyager: 41k-mile 1973 Mercedes-Benz 280C
This is totally something you would have seen parked along the curb of a well-manicured lawn on Long Island or Beverly Hills in the 70s. What I love is how accessible they are now, and yet also on the cusp of becoming a true classic.
Production of the W114 lasted from 1968-1976 and resulted in almost 2 million units made, although only about 67,000 of those were two-door coupes like this.
In the U.S., the W114 was offered with fewer engine choices and DOT required alterations, which meant inferior headlights and larger bumpers. Fortunately, this stunning example wears slim bumpers, although it does have the poor sealed-beam headlights.
This is a 280C. It features the 2.8-litre M110 inline 6-cylinder engine and produced somewhere between 145-160 horsepower, ok for the time but will probably seem slow today. Still, the Germans designed all of their cars for solid and stable Autobahn cruising so this is probably pleasant once up to speed.
The seller of this vehicle claims it has only 41,499 miles and no rust, except for a dime-sized bubble on the driver's side. That's nothing considering how quickly these rust when exposed to the elements over time.
The tin-foil gold exterior color would be atrocious on any other car but works perfectly, especially with the charming matching tin wheel covers.
The seller mentions the leather seats were refreshed and it shows. The tan leather looks smooth and soft. I appreciate owners who re-do their interiors, especially on older cars. It's smart and goes a long way.
This 280C is equipped with an automatic transmission and air conditioning. They make no mention of mechanical status, but with the low mileage and clean body, hopefully the inner workings were cared for as much too.
Hemmings CPI Value Guide estimates a 1973-1974 280C in fair condition to be worth $1,850, good condition $3,900 and excellent condition $8,850, with a 4 point percentage increase over time.
Find it here on craigslist in Braintree, MA for $7,950.