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1965 Mercedes-Benz 230SL

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Year:  1965
Miles:  40,290 KM (recorded)
Model:  W113 230SL 
Exterior Colour:  White Grey
Interior colour:  Black MB Tex

£57,995

Here is a Pagoda that’s for driving rather than polishing. It has all the right ingredients; it’s the lighter, revvier and sportier 230SL, it has the essential, in my opinion, manual gearbox and it has received a great deal of recent work ensuring it’s a solid and well-sorted car mechanically. And it drives great.

 

This is a French-market car that has remained in France from new until it was recently imported into the UK. It is finished in its original White Grey (158) with a black interior, black hood and comes with a hardtop, also finished in black.

 

The car was first registered on April 13th 1965 in France by the importer, CH F Delecroix of Paris. It was owned for many years by a gentleman in Limoges before changing hands and moving to Bordeaux in 2005, where it remained until recent years.

 

There’s a paperwork history going back to the 80s including bills for parts, work carried out and copies of previous Carte Gris. Notable is the expenditure the car has received in recent years. This has included a replacement gearbox and clutch plus hydraulics, new stainless steel exhaust system, rebuild injection pump and new (modern style) fuel pump, new electronic ignition distributor, rebuilt suspension with new dampers, wheel bearings, springs and bushings. Around 8000 Euros were spent in 2023 at a respected MB specialist on some of that work.

In addition, this Pagoda now wears a brand new set of Blockley period-style radials in the correct 185R14 size.

 

As a result of this work, this 230SL is a very nicely sorted car to drive, and tremendously enjoyable with a really sweet, willing engine and the sort of gearbox that you change gears just for the fun of it.

 

Of course, at this price point, it’s not a perfect car. While, as the pictures show, it’s tidy and presentable, it has a patina of its 59 years and there are blemishes up close.

Importantly, the underside is remarkably good. Having lived in the climate of central and southern France for many years the underside is very solid and predominantly original - the car still retains its original floors and sills.

 

To my mind, this is the sort of Pagoda that you can enjoy properly driving; the sort of Pagoda you could take on a rally; the sort of Pagoda you can drive, enjoy and improve when desired. And these are often some of the most enjoyable cars to own.

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