Mercedes 230 SL Pagode

Brand Mercedes
Model 230 SL Pagode
Color White
Transmission Manual 4-speed
Pk 170 ch
Year 1964
Price Not for sale

The story takes us back to the early 60s, when Mercedes had to replace its legendary 300SL and 190SL. For the engineers, the brief was complex: to create a car as desirable as its predecessor, as reliable and as comfortable, in order to appeal to the North American market. Of course, the Germans remain pragmatic, and for a car with a relatively small market share, there’s no question of skyrocketing development costs. The basis for this was to be the W108 luxury sedan. For powertrains, undercarriages and many other components! Admittedly, things weren’t off to a great start for a light, sporty convertible.

But that was without counting on the brilliant pencil stroke of a certain Paul Bracq, and the work of a team of talented engineers. They all worked together to produce a masterfully tailored, comfortable and avant-garde cabriolet. The new-generation SL was presented at Geneva in 1963, and its concave hardtop (designed by engineer Béla Barény) earned it the nickname “Pagoda”.

A few months later, the newcomer finally hit the road in its 230 version, equipped with a 150hp 2.3-liter 6-cylinder engine. A few years later, in 1966, the stealthy 250SL made its appearance. This time, displacement is increased to 2.5 liters, but power remains unchanged. Only the torque is increased. This version features an optimized rear axle, a larger fuel tank and four-disc brakes.

Unfortunately, his career was short-lived. The powertrain wasn’t renowned for its reliability, and didn’t offer much more than the 230SL. So, after two years and 5,196 units sold, the 250SL is leaving the scene. In the meantime, Mercedes has not been idle, and the more mature, reliable and high-performance 280 SL goes into production. Power and comfort have really improved, thanks to the 2.8-liter six-cylinder engine developing 170 hp. It was this version that made the Pagoda a commercial success, despite a price close to that of a 246 Dino, and a forgotten sportiness. With 23,885 units sold up to the end of production in 1971, it was the best-selling version. All in all, the W113 series has nothing to envy its predecessor. Admittedly, the pedigree isn’t the same, but commercially, with 48912 units sold, the Pagoda is a real success.

This model was delivered new to France in 1964. It was purchased by the current owner in 2018, who undertook a total restoration, completed in 2024. Everything has been redone, from the engine and bodywork to the interior and soft top. Mechanically, the engine has been completely rebuilt (piston, rings, crankshaft, cylinder heads, injection pump, etc.), as have the running gear.

She has a restoration file with invoices and photos for the restoration undertaken since 2018.





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