The nice thing about living in the bargain basement of the collector car world is that, if you’re willing to accept some imperfections in each of your cars, you can probably afford to have a couple of different cars for different occasions and events. And for occasions and events where you don’t need the tail sliding around corners, or plenty of corner-to-corner poke, an older Mercedes is perfect. Which occasions? Well, how about short around-town errands, or longer freeway trips requiring a car that can cruise comfortably and quietly at 75-80mph? If you prefer a Mercedes that isn’t quite ready to do 80mph, check out this 1969 Mercedes 250 for sale for a mere $1130 in Portland, OR.
Okay, okay, put down the phone and don’t get carried away by these nicely shot pictures. But this car does look in impressive condition, and is said to have a mere 80,000 miles, new tires, rebuilt carburetors, repaired heater, a spare set of hubcaps, and a new rear window seal. So why, why, why is it a dog on the market? Well, it’s said to need a new head gasket, and the owner advises towing it home to avoid engine damage.
Here’s the offending lump. It’s not spotless, but doesn’t look neglected either. This engine gave enough power to motivate the larger 250S sedan, and the sportier 250SL roadster, so it should be plenty capable of moving this car. Is this car lingering because people are scared of the M114 six, which seems to have a reputation for maintenance challenges? Has the engine already had some damage? You’ll definitely want to check out the condition carefully, but frankly, even if it goes horribly wrong, the rest of the car looks so nice you can probably find a good replacement engine and still come out even.
Look at that interior. Yes, they are hard wearing, but this looks pretty clean and well-kept. With any luck, the car runs well enough to gauge the condition of the transmission, differential, and other expensive parts. Other problem areas on these cars include the suspension and of course rust on the body – this car seems to pass on the latter, at least.
Really, no dents. Can you picture the New England Mercedes enthusiast who has a good running one of these that has seen one too many winters? Where is that person now? And even if you’re not that person, what fun things could you do with this car? Would a period M116/7 V8 fit, or perhaps a newer turbodiesel from a W124 300TD? It’s hard to go wrong if you have the space.