1957 Mercedes-Benz SL 190190 SL
Year of manufacture1957
$150,000 - $175,000
- Beautifully restored to a high standard
- Numbers-matching engine with Twin Solex 44 PHH carburetors
- Equipped with a four-speed manual gearbox
- Features fog lamps, Becker Europa radio, kinder seat, and fitted luggage
With the exotic, high-performance 300 SL coupe and roadster making headlines for Mercedes-Benz, the company’s chief US importer, Max Hoffman, suggested an equally stylish, yet less costly alternative could be a strong seller Stateside. The resulting 190 SL was based on the production Ponton sedans, but it featured attractive new styling loosely derived from its 300 SL big sibling. Following the 190 SL’s debut at the 1954 New York Auto Show, Hoffman was proven right with strong sales from day one, and its popularity continued throughout the car’s nine-year run.
Offered here is a gorgeous 1957 190 SL roadster, fully restored and beautifully finished in its original shade of feuerwehrrot (DB534) and featuring many factory accessories. This example spent many years in a significant collection of important sports cars where it was restored to a high standard. It has seen careful use since its restoration, and it remains in remarkably fresh condition. The presentation is crisp and very well detailed, with period correct options including front and rear bumper guards, fog lights, and a locking fuel cap. Correct 13-inch steel wheels are dressed with bias-ply Firestone whitewall tires, and the original color-keyed hubcaps complete the simple yet elegant look.
The two-seat cockpit is trimmed in gray leather and square weave carpeting, with correct rubber floor linings. Features such as the correct Plexiglas sun visors (leather trimmed visors were fitted just a few cars later) reveal the attention to detail paid to this restoration. Fittings include a glovebox-mounted clock, side-facing kinder seat, Becker Europa Hi-Fi radio, and a set of matching fitted luggage in the boot.
Displacing 1.9-liters, the inline four-cylinder engine retains the proper twin Solex 44 PHH carburetors, airbox and air filter housing. Details like decals, labels, and correct hose clamps maintain the authentic appearance. The engine and chassis numbers match per factory records; however, it is noted that the stamped body number differs from that listed on the data card. The undercarriage is correctly painted in gray and satin black, with exceptional finish quality and attention to detail.
Highly optioned, beautifully presented and ready to enjoy to the fullest, this 190 SL is an exquisite example of Mercedes-Benz’s landmark junior sports car.To view this car and others currently consigned to this auction, please visit the RM website at rmsothebys.com/en/auctions/mo20.