The Cabriolet version of the 220 S was first made in July 1956. The new car's bodywork was almost identical to that of the Cabriolet shown at the Frankfurt International Motor Show, based on the 220a. The engine was similar to that of the 220 S Saloon, developing 100bhp, which was far from superfluous given that the convertible version was 60kg heavier due to structural reinforcements. Three months after the Cabriolet's launch, a Coupé - identical from a mechanical point of view - also entered production.
In August 1957 improvements were made to the entire Mercedes-Benz range. The 220 S Coupé and 220 S Cabriolet received a more powerful engine, producing 106bhp, and a new Hydrak clutch. The only visible changes were a new windscreen and registration plate. From September 1958 the Coupé, Cabriolet and Saloon versions were fitted with Bosch mechanical injection and renamed 220 SE. Engine apart, the Coupé and Cabriolet (internal code W 128) remained identical to previous 220 S versions. The power of their robust engine rose to 115bhp, and fuel consumption fell significantly.
In August 1959 three new Fin Tail models were presented. Restricted production of the 220 SE Cabriolet and Coupé continued until November 1960. From August 1959, both versions were fitted with a 220 SEb engine, with increased power of 120bhp thanks to a new camshaft and more direct intake-pipe.
Coupés and Cabriolets with 'Ponton' bodywork are the rarest of the post-war period: just 5,731 were built, only 1,942 with injection engines.
The rare Cabriolet presented here was sold new at Delecroix (importers) in Paris in 1960.
During its more recent lifetime, maintenance was carried out by Alfredo Sampaio, with €25,000 spent over a five-year period. The waterproofing of the engine/gear-box/axel has been repaired, and the fuel pump, exhaust, water hoses and rear shock-absorbers replaced. The tyres are new and the windscreen has been replaced (invoices).
The bodywork has been repainted navy blue, with a new beige canvas hood with fabric lining. The wool carpets have been replaced with matching biscuit Wilton carpets but the parchment-coloured leather seats are original, as are the door linings. The dashboard has been restored. The steering-wheel and gear-stick are white, and the car is fitted with its original Becker Le Mans radio.
This very elegant car, with 32,000 km on the clock, offers a wonderful opportunity for galloping along in a four-seater, hair in the wind….
Please contact our sales team for more information or to arrange a viewing:
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