In the late 1950’s, Mercedes-Benz began replacing the ageing Ponton sedans, coupes and cabriolets with an all new car designated internally as the W110/W111. This new series of mid-range cars became known as Heckflosse - German for “fintail”. As the nickname implies, Heckflosse sedans featured prominent tail fins, a clear concession to the American market where Mercedes-Benz was desperate to expand. A myriad of engines options were offered, along with conventional springs or air suspension and differing wheelbases. Coupe and cabriolet variants debuted in 1960, sharing a similar front end design with their stable mates, except the fins were drastically toned down. This design proved successful enough to outlive the Heckflosse by a full six years and inspire the design of the next generation of Mercedes sedans, the W108/109. W111 Coupes and Cabriolets remained in production until 1971.
This lovely 220SEB Cabriolet has been carefully restored and has been driven gently, now displaying a pleasing light patina. The color combination of dark blue paint over a blue leather interior perfectly suits the understated lines. This example is fitted with the rare floor shift 4-speed manual gearbox and attractive European headlamps. As should be expected with any W111 Mercedes-Benz, panel fit is excellent, as are the paint quality and exterior trim. The original tool kit, correct radio and owner’s manual are present. Inside the luxurious cockpit, the leather seats are in very fine order with correct blue carpeting. The signature Mercedes Zebrano wood trim is excellent and the convertible top is in correct German canvas. Lifting the hood reveals the nicely presented inline six, where all brackets and linkages are finished in proper gold-cadmium plating. The theme continues in the trunk and on the undercarriage where everything is tidy and well detailed, with no signs of rust or crash damage. In a true testament to its fine condition, this 220SEB has recently been shown at the Greenwich Concours d’Elegance.
W111 cabriolets are cherished for their unrivalled build quality, exceptional road manners and elegant styling. This example is no exception; it is an honest, sorted car with no stories that is ready to be driven on your favorite back roads. It is sure to please anyone looking for an outstanding example of one of Mercedes Benz’s finest post-war luxury cars.
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