Paris

5-6 February 2014

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Lot 23

1960 Mercedes-Benz 190 SL Roadster

  • Chassis no. 121.040.10.017417
  • Engine no. 121.921.10.017555

Sold for €109.200


105 bhp, 1,897 cc single overhead-camshaft inline four-cylinder engine, four-speed manual transmission, independent front suspension with coil springs, swing axle rear suspension with coil springs, and four-wheel drum brakes. Wheelbase: 2,400 mm

  • Known history, with only five owners since new
  • Just 14,500 kilometres since nut-and-bolt restoration
  • Serviced all its life by renowned specialists
  • Original matching-numbers engine
  • Set of luggage


In 1954, Mercedes’ competition-inspired 300 SL entered production. Few other cars could come close in either performance or style, but it also had a hefty price. New York imported car impresario Max Hoffman wanted a smaller and more affordable version that he could sell in greater volumes.



The end result was the 190 SL, a stunning roadster in the style of the 300 SL, which reached the market in 1955 and significantly outsold its bigger brother. The 190 SL was powered by a 1.9-litre single overhead-cam four that could produce 120 horsepower, and it featured independent suspension and oozed style.



This example, resplendent in black with dark green leather seats, including the third seat option, benefits from known ownership history from new. It was delivered to its first owner, a Dr Thieden, who bought the car as a student and owned it for the next 27 years. In 1987, he sold the car to Dr Hansel, who, in 1990, conducted a full nut-and-bolt restoration with the renowned Esdar Classic Cars in Bielefeld, Germany. Dr Hansel owned this car for more than 20 years. Since 2008, it has had just two additional owners and has covered only 14,500 kilometres since its restoration.



With few miles since its thorough restoration, this 190 SL, presented in a stunning colour combination, is a fantastic example of a car that is now sought-after in its own right—a “little brother” that has come of age, to be desired by anyone who loves sporty driving.






Moteur quatre-cylindres en ligne 1 897 cm3, un ACT, 105 ch, transmission manuelle quatre rapports, suspension avant indépendante à ressorts hélicoïdaux, essieu arrière brisé à ressorts hélicoïdaux, freins à tambours sur les quatre roues. Empattement : 2 400 mm.



  • Historique connu, cinq propriétaires depuis l'origine
  • Seulement 14 500 km parcourus depuis sa restauration complete
  • Entretien régulier par des spécialistes renommés
  • Moteur d'origine, numéros concordants
  • Jeux de valises sur mesure




En 1954 la Mercedes 300 SL, dérivée de la compétition, entrait en production. Rares étaient les voitures capables de l'égaler, que ce soit en terme de performances ou de style, mais elle était également hors de prix. Max Hoffmann, basé à New York et qui régentait l'importation de voitures étrangères, souhaitait une version de plus petite taille et plus abordable, qu'il pourrait vendre en plus grande quantité.



Le résultat sera la 190 SL, un superbe cabriolet qui reprenait le style de la 300 SL. Commercialisée à partir de 1955, sa diffusion n'a pas tardé à dépasser celle de sa grande sœur. La 190 SL recevait un moteur 1,9 litres doté d'un arbre à cames en tête et développant 120 ch. Elle était équipée d'une suspension indépendante et affichait un style affirmé.



Le présent exemplaire, superbe en noir avec sellerie en cuir vert foncé et comportant l'option du troisième siège, bénéficie d'un historique connu depuis qu'il a été vendu neuf. Il a été livré à son premier propriétaire, un Dr Thieden, qui l'a acheté alors qu'il était étudiant et l'a conservé pendant 27 ans. En 1987, il a cédé sa 190 SL au Dr Hansel qui, en 1990, l'a confiée à l'atelier réputé Esdar Classic Cars, à Bielefeld (Allemagne), pour une restauration complète. Elle est restée entre les mains du Dr Hansel pendant plus de 20 ans. Depuis 2008, elle n'a connu que deux autres propriétaires et n'a couvert que 14 500 km depuis sa restauration.



Ayant assez peu roulé depuis sa remise en état en profondeur, cette 190 SL habillée d'une splendide combinaison de couleurs représente un exemple fantastique d'une voiture aujourd'hui recherchée à juste titre—une "petite sœur" qui a atteint la maturité, pour être appréciée de quiconque aime la conduite sportive.

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 911. Barney l... 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. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... 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

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

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

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... 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. ... 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