Two-Grand Mercs – 1973 Mercedes 280 and 1985 Mercedes 230CE

It’s always a neat feeling to think you’re getting something for nothing, or at least very little. And sure, buying a cheap luxury car can be like buying discounted sushi – you pay the initial price of acquisition, but there are some nasty after-effects. However, if you go to the right seller, and try to be selective, you can get a good price and not suffer for it. Anyhow, here’s the first automotive version of cheap sushi – check out this 1973 Mercedes 280, for sale for $2000 in Kelso, WA (near Olympia).

1973 Mercedes 280 left front

Admittedly, these photographs are rather overexposed, but there is no visible rust on this white car. White is not the greatest color for the shape of this sedan, but if the condition is as it appears, you won’t care too much about the color. The bottom of the driver’s door looks a little creased, so it’s worth asking if that’s anything. The car is said to have very little rust, and new master cylinder and calipers.

1973 Mercedes 280 engine

It’s also said to run very well, and you can see the twin-cam inline six M110 engine looks pretty clean. Either there’s something the buyer isn’t disclosing, or the market for the /8 Mercedes is very weak. The interior is said to be in good condition as well, with all windows and doors functioning, and an original radio. Those Beckers in restored condition seem to pull a lot of money, so some of the value in the car is there, all by itself.

1973 Mercedes 280 interior

If you’d rather something more elegant, or more oddball, check out this 1985 Mercedes 230CE, for sale for $1995 in Kenmore, WA. You might say, what’s so strange about a 1980s Mercedes coupe? Well, it’s a gray market, fuel-injected four cylinder gasoline engine car with cloth seats – only a manual transmission would bring it any further from what was sold in North America.

1985 Mercedes 230CE left front

For some reason the headline is Attention Grabber. Perhaps at a show of W123 Mercedes, but anywhere else, this car’s elegant, understated design probably won’t attract too much attention. It’s not clear whether the seller is aware of the grey market status, but the car looks to have been federalized to some degree, with dual headlights and a speedometer showing miles per hour. No pictures of the engine are offered, but with 136hp and 148 lb.-ft. of torque you should walk away from or at least keep up with any model original sold in North America.

1985 Mercedes 230CE interior

The car looks to be finished in Magnetite Blue, although that color was only available until 1979, so perhaps it’s Lapis Blue. Either way, it’s a rather unusual color for these, since most North American market cars appeared in earth tones and silver. If you want to go for the full autobahn hot rod look, you can add a lip spoiler to the trunk and some BBS mesh or Ronal Penta wheels – just don’t tell anyone about the 4-cylinder under the hood!


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One Response to “Two-Grand Mercs – 1973 Mercedes 280 and 1985 Mercedes 230CE”

  1. pickles Says:

    One more thing about the CE- European spec models seem to always have dual-zone heat where American spec always have ‘climate control’ for one zone. I’d say dual-zone is far more appealing to me- since I travel with one of those ‘always freezing’ peeps.

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