The Don Davis Collection

27 April 2013

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Lot 102

1970 Mercedes-Benz 280SL Roadster

  • Chassis no. 113.044.12.014397

Sold for $77,000


180 bhp, 2,778 cc overhead-cam inline six-cylinder engine with Bosch fuel-injection, four-speed automatic transmission, independent front suspension with coil springs and unequal A-arms, independent rear suspension with low-pivot swing axles, trailing arms, and coil springs, and four-wheel hydraulic disc brakes. Wheelbase: 94.5 in.

  • The famed “Pagoda,” in outstanding condition
  • Well-accessorized, including air conditioning and a Becker Mexico radio


Every decade has its style icons. The 1960s brought us go-go boots, bouffant hairdos, and kipper ties, none of which have aged nearly as well as the Mercedes-Benz W113 series of two-seat roadsters. The W113 was the original “car as accessory.” It was expensive and impractical enough to demonstrate one’s wealth, but it was small and zippy enough for easy motoring through city traffic. It was sporty enough to be fast and fun to drive, and it was also comfortable enough to be luxurious. The W113 was always appropriate for any occasion, and anyone looked good in it.



The original W113 design was the 230SL, introduced in 1963 with the crisp, angular Paul Bracq styling and “Pagoda” removable hardtop, which would become the model’s signatures. The original 150-horsepower six-cylinder grew in size over the decade, with the ultimate model being the 280SL with the 180-horsepower, 2.8-liter engine, introduced in 1968 and built through 1971. The 280SL was the most popular W113, accounting for 23,885 cars.



As one expects from a car in this collection, this particular 280SL ticks all of the boxes. Set up for luxury, it is finished in the rarely seen and elegant hue of Medium Blue, as original, with a lovely, crisp beige interior, and it is equipped with a floor-shifted automatic transmission, power steering, air conditioning, an outside rearview mirror, front and rear bumper guards, a desirable Becker Mexico radio/cassette player, and tinted glass. Naturally, it has both a soft top and the famous removable “Pagoda” top with optional trim strips. Notably, the car is supplied with extensive records of service over its lifetime.



Then, as now, a 280SL is always in style.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

aweaver@rmsothebys.com

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

asabatie-garat@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

bruprecht@rmsothebys.com

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 9... read more

David Swig

dswig@rmsothebys.com

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. He is a life-long automobile enthusiast and ... read more

Don Rose

drose@rmsothebys.com

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

dgould@rmsothebys.com

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

gduff@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Ian Kelleher

ikelleher@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Ian Kelleher began his automotive career immediately following his graduation from Oberlin College with a Bachelor of Arts in Politica... read more

Jake Auerbach

jauerbach@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Jonathan Sierakowski

jonathan@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Jonathan Sierakowski developed a passion for classic cars while working at a Connecticut restoration shop as a teenager. He graduated with a... read more

Kurt Forry

kforry@rmsothebys.com

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

mmalamut@rmsothebys.com

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

msquire@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

... read more

Mike Fairbairn

mfairbairn@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

ocamelin@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

pdarvill@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

pfisher@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. He att... read more

Peter Wallman

pwallman@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Peter Wallman joined RM Europe in 2007 following nearly two decades in the international advertising industry, where he was based out ... read more

Shelby Myers

smyers@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

tvandervelden@rmsothebys.com

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more