Introduced in January 1968, the newly developed 2.8-liter six-cylinder engine of the 280 SE brought about the replacement of both the 250 SE and 300 SE models, and the new cars are easily identified by their modernized one-piece wheel covers. Expensive and exclusive when new, the W111-Series coupes and cabriolets had a style and presence all their own; the leather-, chrome-, and wood-laden interiors eclipsed nearly all competitors with their comfort and style.
This 280 SE Cabriolet from 1969 has been kept by a Southern California enthusiast for the past 12 years as a leisure car. Invoices on file show the Cabriolet has been dutifully maintained, recording tune-ups and the replacement of various parts when necessary. Fluid changes, as well as suspension and electrical work are also documented in the paperwork. Finished in Silver (DB 180) with a black canvas roof, the 280 SE’s interior is trimmed in patinated dark red leather, which may well be original. A matching leather top boot is included as well. Desirably equipped with a floor shift and a Zebrano wood dash, the interior is a truly inviting space.
As the decades continue to pass, Paul Bracq’s design for the two-door W111s of the 1960s remains as inspired as ever, and it has come to define the term “modern classic.” This fine example is prime to be used as intended, providing enjoyment with every mile it covers.