In March 1963 the 230SL made its debut at the Geneva Show, replacing the much acclaimed 190SL and 300SL models. Like its 190SL predecessor, its mechanical elements were derived from a contemporary saloon, in this instance the popular 220SE model. The 230SL’s 2.3-litre engine was an enlarged version of its fuel injected six cylinder overhead camshaft unit and there was the option of automatic or manual transmission. Suspension was all independent with a low pivot swing axle at the rear. Mercedes engineering integrity, together with elegance and practicality, made the pagoda top SL cars among the most distinctive designs of the era, in closed form offering handsome proportions and coupe-like comfort and with the hard top removed offering lively open-top performance. It is largely thanks to these attributes that they remain so universally popular today and command such a large market following.
These popular Mercedes sports cars are very much in demand today and this example is no exception. Formerly in the ownership of the Getty Family, this example was subject to a cost-no-object restoration and upgraded to 280 specifications by marque specialists Silchester Garage. With photographs and invoices to document works carried out, including disc brakes, automatic transmission, power steering, 280 engine upgrade and air conditioning. The car has recently been subject to tuning by Mercedes-Benz specialist Steve Refearn.
Finished in Midnight Blue with black leather interior, this is a unique example of one of the most influential sports cars of the 1960’s, with ownership from one of the world’s best know families, and a no expense spared restoration.