Merc duo set to daz­zle at auc­tion

Un­mo­lested 300 SL Road­ster and Gull­wing head for Peb­ble Beach sale star­dom

Classic Cars (UK) - - Month In Cars -

Even by the stan­dards of star lots at the Peb­ble Beach auc­tion sales, Good­ing’s lat­est an­nounce­ment is breath­tak­ing. Fresh from the sale of a re­mark­able un­re­stored Gull­wing that fetched $1.46 mil­lion at Scotts­dale in Jan­uary, it will be of­fer­ing not only an even bet­ter-pre­served un­re­stored Gull­wing with a mere 16,000 miles but a 300 SL Road­ster to go with it, owned from new by the same fa­ther and son and show­ing just 38,000 miles.

The ven­dor took over the care of the cars from his fa­ther in 1964 and has in his own words ‘just kept ’em’. Nei­ther has been driven much, as in­di­cated by the mileage, but both have been stored in per­fectly dry garages and started up of­ten enough to ar­rive in 2017 in good run­ning or­der.

The Gull­wing was ac­quired in 1955 af­ter the ven­dor’s fa­ther bought out some­one else’s place in New York im­porter Max Hoff­man’s wait­ing list. He paid an ex­tra $65 to have the car painted Bri­tish Rac­ing Green, which with the tan hide trim makes this com­bi­na­tion a one-off for a Gull­wing. The marker lights that are all orig­i­nal, and the front bumper has never been drilled for a li­cence plate, and there’s even orig­i­nal sale pa­per­work from Hoff­man Mo­tors.

The 300 SL Road­ster joined the fam­ily in 1957, the same year the model was an­nounced. The open car’s greater user­friend­li­ness prompted more miles and a lit­tle more wear, with touched-in Sil­verblue Me­tal­lic paint and grey leather fad­ing to its un-dyed colour on parts of the dash and seats. It has its orig­i­nal set of fit­ted Karl Baisch lug­gage and, like the Gull­wing, is surely enough of a sur­vivor to be pre­served rather than re­stored.

Sales of $1m-$1.3m for the Gull­wing and $800k-$1m for the Road­ster are ex­pected at the Cal­i­for­nian sale on Au­gust 18-19, but any­one want­ing to keep them as a pair will need se­ri­ous com­mit­ment and fi­nan­cial clout to fight off ri­vals whose bids could go some way be­yond those fig­ures.

Both the SL Road­ster and the Gull­wing will hope­fully be pre­served rather than re­stored

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