Auction Classic: 1969 Mercedes-Benz 600 – 218 Inches of Bankruptcy

Well folks, I have postponed it for a while. I wanted to never have to do it. But I am afraid here it comes. The “Sorry I have not written enough posts”. It’s awkward to do, and very annoying, but on the bright side it is at least a damn sight easier than the job of restoring this Mercedes 600 will be.

I must admit that the entire point of doing this post is that it gave me an angle for this particular 600. My employer, who graciously took me from the rows of NEETdom around the same time my writing output plummeted like the resale value of a Golf TDI, seems to be undergoing what can best be described as a case of project ADHD.  Project ADHD may be fun to watch from the comfort and safety of another department, but it gets tiresome when you’re in the middle of it.

It’s only by a (couple?) of project ADHD that I can imagine one of these cars ending in what you could call “Curbside spec”. Complete with delicious patina which begs to be preserved with some clearcoat and an interior that speaks more about rough trails and benign neglect that loving care and rivers of leather treatment. Even on a similar vintage 280SE something like this would be relatively rare, what with price curve for vintage Mercs resembling more of a cliffside than a curve.

But a 600? A car which sat square on that pedestal reserved for vehicles which did not really depreciate and whose engineers never heard so much as a syllable of the words “Budget”, “Parts-sharing”, or “Cost-effective”? Someone must’ve gotten a screaming deal on an estate sale, something blew up, they saw the repair bill and sold it. Rinse. Repeat. See the tragic story unfold.

Just the interior itself would send shivers of fear into any wannabe car-restorer with a sense of fiscal responsibility. It should also send shivers of any that has ever actually sat down and calculated how much did their previous endeavor cost. Maybe the backs of the rear seats could be saved with a couple dozen hours of billable labor, but everything else will need upholstering. And I hope you know a damn good wood guy to refinish what’s salvageable and make what isn’t.

The trunklid is damaged. That would be about fifteen grand for the hinge and all the assorted hydraulic sorcery to make it work again. That hydraulic sorcery also allowed the electric windows to close at whatever speed the passengers please. Excellent for dramatic window raising when you’re finished speaking to a prole or finger-severing speed in case your proles had enough of that schtick and have decided to seize your means of transport. It also means every window switch is also fiendishly complicated and should run about five figures per switch. At least it has air suspension, so after spending another large five figure number to make it work again the can stand tall and proud as you figure what exactly is leaking like a sieve this time.

I suppose it could be worse. At least Mercedes-Benz continues to give support to every model they’ve made through Mercedes-Benz Classic. Every part you could ever want for that car is still available straight from the source.

For a price.

So please, if you decide you have extremely deep pockets and that $37,500 seems like a fair price for a shell. And you are aware that you will be spending about ten times that to leave it showroom fresh. AND you realize that the best way to go around this is to phone Mercedes Benz Classic and present them with a blank check. You can check out more of the 600 by clicking here. Just don’t get into another project while they are working on it. In my experience, that will lead to about six months of people having to be briefed on things that they are already working on. Maybe I can write a couple of things on the meantime.