1988 Mercedes 560SEC

I owned this car for about two years while I was living in Michigan and it was a great car.    I purchased it to ‘replace’ the 1989 560SEC – that car had been hit a few times in the snow and was starting to have a few issues.  Michigan is a state where you pretty much need to have a car to get around, so I was on the lookout for something else – with the view that I would use the 89 560 as a winter car until it died, but not spend any more money on it other than consumables, and have a nicer car to drive the rest of the year.

I traveled a lot for work while I was living in the USA, and noticed this car on Ebay in Los Angeles due to finish the week I happened to be there for work.  The seller had lots of photos of the car and it looked in great shape – and the price was right as people were scared off by the high (182k) miles.     It was originally a palm desert car, and had been traded in to a Lexus dealer.

I ended up buying the car, and returning my boring rental car early, and driving this car around for the rest of my LA trip.   All seemed good, so on the Friday evening, I didn’t show for my return flight and started driving back to Michigan.

Due to the weather, I had to take the southerly route, which is a bit longer, but I managed to make it to Arizona on Friday night, St Louis by Saturday night and back in Michigan by Sunday.    The car didn’t miss a beat and was a pleasure to drive back – although the drug dealer rims and gold badges you see on the photos of the 1989 car made it look quite silly.    The car was very original down to the cassette deck, original never used spare, pristine tool kit etc.

Once I got back to Michigan, I then transferred the European headlights and proper badges from the 1989 560 to this car and bought a new set of wheels and tires, which I still have on my 77 450SLC.

During the two years I owned the car, I took it on numerous road trips and it was always a pleasure to drive – never let me down and the engine never even used oil between changes.    I replaced the A/C compressor and rear suspension spheres, as well as did routine maintenance on the car.   I also swapped in a few trim pieces from the 89 and eventually the blower motor too.

Unfortunately I had to sell the car cheap when I left Michigan as I needed a car until the final weekend I was there.    Last I checked (June 2013) it was still registered in Michigan, so I hope it is being looked after.

This and my first car, the 230E are the only cars I have sold that I miss.   I would definitely get another 560SEC  – they make a great everyday car and are the last of the great Mercedes pillarless coupes.