The 300’s cross-braced, oval-tube chassis followed the lines of the 170S and 220, with independent suspension all round and four-wheel drum brakes, but incorporated the added refinements of hypoid bevel final drive, dynamically balanced wheels and remote electrical control of the rear suspension ride height. Initially developing 115bhp, the 3.0-litre, overhead-camshaft, six-cylinder engine – used in fuel-injected form in the 300SL sports car – was boosted in power for the succeeding 300b and 300c models, finally gaining fuel injection in the re-styled 300d of 1957. Other improvements along the way included larger brakes (with servo-assistance from 1954), optional power steering (on the 300d) and the adoption of three-speed automatic transmission as standard on the latter.
Custom built by Mercedes-Benz’s most experienced craftsmen, the 300 was luxuriously appointed and trimmed with materials of the highest quality. Fast and elegant, it was one of very few contemporary vehicles capable of carrying six passengers in comfort at sustained high speeds. It was the car of choice among West German government officials, and throughout Europe and the USA was widely favoured by businessmen, financiers and politicians. Indeed, ‘Adenauer’ became the 300 saloon/limousine’s unofficial model name, after German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer, its most famous customer.
The 300 ‘Adenauer’ Saloon that we have on offer today is a car that was restored 15 years ago, with both its interior and exterior showcased in fine condition. On the inside the red interior leather combines well with the dark wooden dashboard and trim, whilst on the outside the blue and white two-tone colour scheme oozes class and prestige, harking back to late fifties fashion. It comes to the sale with its Italian registration documents.