Author Archive: Colin Duffy

Author Archives for Colin Duffy

1971 Mercedes 280SL Pagoda with Original Paint – 4-speed transmission

1971 Mercedes 280SL Pagoda with Original Paint

A 55,400 mile textbook Preservation Car, featured on episode no. 70 of Hagerty’s Barn Find Hunter (Here), featuring Tom Cotter. This original Virginia Mercedes 280SL was purchased by a new car dealer in a 30-car package of barn find cars and was subsequently purchased by an enthusiast. This individual had Gus Kidonakis at Beverly Hill Motors in Houston to do an $80,000 preservation in preparing it for the road after its decades-long storage. You might ask, “How could someone possibly spend $80k addressing storage-related items?” We have all the receipts! The enthusiast, our client, found his situation changing and we acquired the car and now offer it to its next long-term caretaker. It is turnkey ready for the road and is among a very limited number of mostly original W113 Pagodas. Certainly, with something like 85 to 90% original paint, this car is in rare company indeed. This might be the holy grail of original [...]

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Imagine an automobile which is arguably the best year of the platform’s production run (more on that later) * and, after 55 years, is still under the same ownership.

*1967 spelled the end of the era when cars were designed and built for enthusiasts without the government looking over the shoulders of engineers. After 1967 became the era of emissions, safety regulations and, as labor costs advanced, rigorous cost cutting measures in manufacture, read ‘cheapening’. Note, this car is titled as a ’68 even though it left the factory in ’67 – an artifact of our DMV system.

Let us build this car to your vision … Note: Sold – completion photos follow:

Soft Top

As Roadster






Outdoor Shots


1971 Mercedes Benz 280SL highly authentic

1971 Mercedes Benz 280SL - 180 Silver
Dr. Tardy is a professor of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery who purchased this car new and was its caretaker for over 40 years. A former flight surgeon, he knew the importance of maintaining machinery. This car’s complete service history is intact. Garage kept and driven sparingly, this W113 Pagoda displays remarkable originality: all the glass, soft top, Becker Europa stereo — stereos in 280SLs were first offered 1971 —, Hirschman electric antenna, Frigiking air conditioner, hardtop headliner, 98% of the interior including all its wood and rare Roser leather upholstery; even the soft top is absolutely original, and all of the options are documented with codes on the data card. All the books, manuals, and the original tool kit are safely secured in the spare tire pocket inside the trunk. With a patinated exterior finish this is no cosseted garage queen, but a true driver which can be pushed around a twisty mountain road, cruised [...]
This late series 280SL was built just 98 cars from the very last one. Features both tops, two sets of wheels and tires, factory Frigiking air conditioning, automatic transmission and the original Becker Europa stereo in-dash backed up with a hidden Bluetooth compliant amplifier to access music in your modern device. She received a comprehensive restoration over the last couple of years. Not only stunning, but she also drives exactly the way the factory intended. Both the engine and the fuel injection pump were completely rebuilt. This car could be considered a show driver and will bring smiles and thumbs up wherever she’s driven.
In Appreciation of Originality

We all appreciate cosmetic perfection, yet there is something to be said for an artifact of human craftsmanship which has survived for five decades or longer, mostly in its original state. Many of us, in our rush to buy the shiny and new – end up buying something which is merely a replica of what the manufacturer originally produced. In many cases, a vendor or other seller, in their rush to meet the typical buyer’s demands, places a cosmetic veneer over a degraded foundational structure or compromised mechanicals.

Human nature being what it is, we tend to seek the lowest price. We try to make comparisons of like-kind but once we get out of our own field of specialty, we are unqualified and can make large errors. Comparing [...]

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The Mercedes 600

An Eclectic Background

This vehicle may have the most eclectic list of notable owners of any car, ever. The names range from George Harrison, David Bowie, Eric Clapton, and Elvis Presley as a preferred car for these entertainers. The only time you will mention Mao Zedong, The Pope, and Pablo Escobar in the same sentence is their love for the Mercedes Benz 600.

Given the wide range of this vehicle’s appeal to notable folks from all walks of life, you would think this car was a fairly straightforward project with an easy fix to make certain these folks could get back into the driver’s seat – or more realistically the back seat so their chauffeur could get back on the road; however, that is not the case.

This vehicle, a 4-door sedan whose production spanned mostly 1960’s-70’s remains to this day

Portfolio of Sold Cars

While we are known around the world as a knowledgeable specialist in the W113 Pagoda Mercedes (230SL, 250SL & 280SL) we have a history with many vehicles, selling and consigning literally thousands since 1985. Our stock has been peppered with names from Abarth to Zagato and everything in between including Mercedes and Ferrari. The list below [...]

My Mink

One of our favorite restoration projects from over the years.

Why We Love It

Once upon a time in Hollywood, glamor ran the scene. I suppose this is not an idea inconsistent with the current day, but that is beside the point. A man and a woman were very much in love. His eyes for her [...]

Home » Archives for Colin Duffy

1971 Mercedes 280SL Restoration –

‘906’ Blue

1971 906 blue Mercedes 280SL in front of the Villa Zee Zaw carriage house

Initial Condition

Good but not *Perfection*

Here at Motoring Investments we tend to work on a wide array of classic Mercedes Benz – and like a fingerprint – no two are ever alike. Generally our jobs entail initial appraisals based on imperfections we are able to determine exist, but every now and again we see a car which has nearly all parts in good working order comparative to your average project car. When this car was brought in, our lead mechanic was talking the client out of more work than was actually needed because of state of his prized daily-driver Pagoda. Eventually the jobs were agreed upon and the work began.

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