1965 Mercedes-Benz 230SL

Dirk de Jager, courtesy of Bonhams
Dirk de Jager, courtesy of Bonhams

Introduced at the Geneva Salon in March 1963 as replacement for the 190SL, the 230SL is a landmark model that founded a sports-car dynasty that would prove an enormous commercial success for Mercedes-Benz.

Soon christened by the public the “Pagoda” after the distinctive shape of the removable hard top that evoked the roof of a Japanese temple, these SL models were among the best-loved sports-tourers of their day and continue to be highly sought after by discerning collectors.

This matching-numbers 230SL Pagoda has the manual-transmission option and was exported to Spain when new. The car was purchased by the vendor from the second owner, who had owned it since 1977 and had taken it in 2012 from Spain to Belgium, although it has not been registered there. It is presented in its factory color scheme of Bordeaux with original black interior, and it has a new convertible soft top. We are advised that the gearbox has been overhauled, the clutch and brakes renewed, and a full service carried out. Well documented, this Pagoda has covered 94,000 kilometers (58,500 miles) from new and comes with service history, service booklet, Daten-Card, Spanish registration papers and Spanish technical inspection until 2012. Receipts for parts are available also, mainly sourced from Niemüller, together with their detailed catalog. The car also comes with the standard factory hard top in original Bordeaux, original parts list, service assistance book, owner’s notes, owner’s manual and an extra set of keys — this is an ideal entry-level European delivery SL.

Gary Anderson

Gary Anderson - SCM Contributor

Gary is also Editor in Chief of The Star, the magazine for the Mercedes-Benz Club of America. He has been active for many years in the Austin-Healey Club USA and is co-author of MBI’s best-selling Austin-Healey Restoration Guide, as well as editor of the Austin-Healey Magazine. An avid vintage race driver, he ran his 1960 MGA in three Monterey Historics, four Wine Country Classics, and the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix. He is the author of Motoring: Getting the Maximum from Your New Mini, a comprehensive guide to the new MINI Cooper, available through Amazon.com.

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