Mercedes-Benz 380SEC - today's cheap V8 tempter

By: Guy Allen, Unique cars magazine

mercedes benz 380SEC This Mercedes-Benz potentially offers a huge amount of car for the dollar. mercedes benz 380SEC

Big cruiser could be value

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You would have had to be seriously cashed-up to afford this 1983 coupe when it was new.

It was at the upper end of the Mercedes-Benz W126 line-up, first launched in 1979.

Typically for the maker, it was a big, heavy and solid-feeling car, weighing in at just under 1600kg.

Moving it along is the by now well-known 3.8lt V8, a single overhead cam and two-valve design claiming 195 horses. That was backed up by a four-speed auto transmission.

The engineering in these things is good and well-proven, and they can live a long time so long as they're treated to the occasional service.

Replacement parts can be expensive, but that doesn't mean they have to be expensive to own. Much of the servicing can be tackled by your local corner mechanic and the engineering is advanced for the day, but fairly conventional by current standards.

People are terrified of the potential costs of running an old European car, and that attitude is not always justified.

If this one stacks up the way it reads in the ad, it has the potential to be a very luxurious cruiser for bargain basement money. Located in Queensland, it's priced at $3500.

Unique Cars magazine Value Guides

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