A classic Mercedes is an amazing piece of automotive art. The cars are ...
A classic Mercedes is an amazing piece of automotive art. The cars are exceptionally well-built and would likely last forever if maintained properly. James Douglas Muir “Jay” Leno has one in his massive collection, and it just recently came off an extensive restoration. We’re talking about a 1971 Mercedes-Benz 280SE 3.5 Coupe, and it’s the last of the coach built cars.
The German automaker produced a number of these gorgeous rides powered by its 6-cylinder engine, but this time around the predecessor to the S-Class comes with the biggest powerplant made available: a 3.5-liter V-8. It cranks out about 200 horsepower and hustles the 280SE to a top speed of 130 mph.
The W108 sedans produced during the same era could be had with a 4.5-liter or a 6.3-liter V-8, but the 3.5 was ideal for getting the classic coupe down the road. It’s actually a real Autobahn cruiser and Jay’s ride simply looks flawless in silver. The interior features first-rate leather and all the wood was brought back to life by Madera Concepts in California.
Paul Bracq penned the lines and he managed to take Mercedes away from its older fintail era and usher it into the future. The straight lines were sorted into a package that’s really pleasing to the eye. The C126 SEC later replaced the W111, and while the former is an exceptional ride in its own right, it’s the cars designed by Bracq that stand out more when placed side-by-side. Check out the video below as Jay takes his 280SE 3.5 Coupe for a spin.
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