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Lot 133

1963 Mercedes-Benz 230SL Roadster

  • Chassis no. 11304210001370

Sold for $33,000

170 bhp, 2,308 cc overhead-cam inline six-cylinder engine, four-speed manual transmission, coil spring four-wheel independent suspension with control arms in front and swing axles rear, and disc-front, drum-rear hydraulic brakes. Wheelbase: 94.5"

- Offered from an important private collection

- Attractive W-113 sports roadster

- Restored example with air conditioning and manual transmission

The Mercedes-Benz product line of the late 1950s had a glaring void. The 300SL sports car was magnificent but expensive, and its 190SL sibling, developed from an entry-level sedan, lacked performance. To remedy this omission, development began on a six-cylinder evolution of the 190SL, internally coded W-127 and intended to be badged as 220SL. Along the way, however, the development was re-directed toward the S-Class, W-112 platform. The result was the W-113, a fuel-injected 2.3-liter sports car introduced at the March 1963 Geneva Motor Show. Badged 230SL, it came as a roadster or “pagoda roof” coupe. Nearly 20,000 were built through 1967, of which more than half were exported, many of them to the United States.

Road & Track was impressed by its performance: “the 230SL really belongs to the fast car group. The manual-shift gearbox is first class with very fast, excellent synchromesh, and a shift lever position which is exactly right.” Successively larger engines kept the W-113 in production through 1971, as the 250SL and finally 280SL. When finally succeeded by the R107 and C107 cars, nearly 50,000 had been built.

Purchased by the current owner in May 2005, this Mercedes-Benz 230SL was restored prior to his acquisition. The combination of the white exterior and red leather are very striking, and the sprightly motor with the manual transmission makes for a very enjoyable driving experience. Equipped with air conditioning and an AM/FM cassette stereo, it is a pleasure to drive. The odometer currently indicates 13,350 miles. The car presents well with cosmetic faults only visible on very close examination. Road & Track summed up their review of the 230SL succinctly: “for the man who can afford it, the 230SL should come very near to the ideal of a fast, effortless GT car.”

As part of a large private collection, this car has been treated to climate-controlled storage but has seen little exercise in recent years and will require thorough professional inspection before being driven.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

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California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

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United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

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Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

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California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

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United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

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Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

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Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

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California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

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California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

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California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

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United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

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Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

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United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

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United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

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Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

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California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

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United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more