Diamond in the Rough? 1997 Mercedes-Benz S420


While we don't typically advocate "Buy Here, Pay Here" dealers as the ideal place to find your next collectible Mercedes-Benz, the tightening market - especially for the W140 - requires turning over every stone in order to find a great deal. Today's example may just be that type of situation.

Listed for sale on craigslist out of Brooklyn, NY, this 1997 S420 has a myriad of interesting goodies, shows incredibly well in the photos and may just be worth finishing and enjoying as an incredibly cool daily-drivable W140.

Finished in Black (040) over Mushroom leather interior, this 1997 W140 has the most useable and economical "sweet-spot" engine of all the W140 powertrain offerings: the 4.2L V8. With plenty of power and eight cylinders, this powerplant also provides impressive mpgs and smooth as silk power application throughout the band.

Condition on the paint and interior seem very impressive - almost suspiciously so given its origin - in the photos provided by the selling dealer. The interior shows no obvious signs of wear in the normal places seen on a W140, and the paint shines nicely in the photos. We are right to suspect there might be some repaint work here -given the body kit discussed below - but that's all conjecture at this point as no info is provided by the seller.

What really attracted us to this sedan is the presence of what appears to be a Lorinser-style body kit. One of our favorite kits on the W140, this one looks exceptional in black and would be perfect but for the missing side-skirts along the transition. Additionally, this car wears a S600 grill, S600 "V12" shifter, AMG wheels (from a W220 S55) and clear markers at the corners. We can see some type of chrome exhaust tips in the rear which aren't squared, so they don't appear to be AMG or Lorinser, but further inquiry is certainly warranted.

Removal of the rear reverse-light painted coverings would be a must, in our opinion, but the rest of the kit works very well on this car and will be perfect with the addition of the missing side-skirts.

At a price of only $8,995 asked by the seller, we feel like this might be an excellent deal for a V8 W140 with only 126k miles... but of course, there is much to be confirmed on this car such as mechanical condition, history, maintenance, etc. That may be hard to discern at a dealership such as this one, but for any W140 fanatic, it's certainly worth further pursuit.


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