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1974 (W116) Mercedes-Benz 450SE

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Details

Price: $11,800

Mileage: 102,525 Miles

Engine: M117 4.5-Liter V8 Engine

Transmission: 3-Speed Automatic Transmission

Exterior color: Green Exterior

Interior: Beige Interior

VIN: 11603212027307

Additional features:

Electronic Ignition

Wood Trim

R134a Air Conditioning

Front Headrests

Front Armrest

Rear Armrest

Older Blaupunkt CD Stereo

Fog Lights

Toolkit

Colorado Car

Extensive Recent Maintenance

  • Brake Master Cylinder
  • Rear Brake Calipers, Discs, Pads
  • Front and Rear Shocks
  • Power Steering Pump
  • Water Pump/Thermostat
  • Overhauled R134a Air Conditioning
  • Converted Distributor to Electronic Ignition

Background

1974 (W116) Mercedes-Benz 450SE exterior photo

In 1972 Mercedes-Benz introduced the first official S-Class with the W116-generation full-size luxury sedan. The W116-generation was a car of many firsts, including ground-breaking safety features like a redesigned body to protect interior occupants and pedestrians, padded tactile interior components, and anti-lock brakes. The exterior design was both elegant and masculine. Underneath that sheet metal was a variety of in-line six-cylinder and V8 petrol engines, and even a turbo-diesel engine. Four-wheel independent suspension and four-wheel disc brakes handled the sporting business, while a spacious interior set the standard for luxury. The W116-generation S-Class was a game-changer for what would become the flagship of the Mercedes-Benz sedan fleet. Even some five decades later, few cars mirror its sporting elegance.

Summary

 exterior photo

This 1974 Mercedes 450SE is a fantastic survivor example of a W116 S-Class. Unlike the myriads of S-Classes finished in Silver, Brown, or Black, it stands out in color code 860, simply named Green. As members of the Green Car Appreciation Society, we are happy to have it at Glen Shelly; being green is by far the most defining feature of this 450SE. With 102,500 miles on the odometer, it presents well, but it does have some typical age-related flaws that are easily forgiven when considering its overall character and cool color. We are now selling it on consignment for a Glen Shelly regular who purchased it in Boulder, Colorado, a few years ago. Shortly after his purchase, he brought it to us for an extensive mechanical overhaul. The work included replacing the brake master cylinder, rear calipers, discs, and rotors, fuel lines, a cooling system flush, replacing the fan clutch, water pump, and thermostat, and converting the ignition to an electronic ignition. We also replaced the front and rear shocks, rebuilt the power steering pump, the drive shaft center support bearing and flex disc, replaced all filters and flushed all fluids, overhauled the air conditioning system, and converted it to R134a. The work totaled over $9,000—a considerable benefit to its next owner! As a Colorado car, rust is minimal, but at the expense of many cracked interior bits due to UV exposure. It has been repainted at some point, and although it has some flaws, the paint is very presentable. We would like to find a new owner who will enjoy it for the next chapter of its story.

Exterior

1974 (W116) Mercedes-Benz 450SE exterior photo

Despite being nearly fifty years since it was first assembled in Germany, the condition of the exterior belies its age. Notable flaws are some large paint cracks, bubbles on the hood and roof, and many smaller rock chips and light imperfections. The paint gauges at greater than 10 mils, evidence of being repainted. The bottom of the rear passenger side door shows the thickest readings at over 20mils, up to even 40 in spots, suggesting some bodywork in the car’s past. Rust is minimal considering the car’s age, but there are some areas, notably inside of the gas filler cap and the bottom rear corner of the driver’s door. There is also light surface rust on the underside of the car and several pea-sized spots of rust on the driver side fender, the front passenger door sill, and the bottom rear corner of the back passenger side door window (along with a small paint bubble near this area). The bumper black-work shows typical age-related wear, light UV fade, and small areas of paint transfer from other vehicles (which no doubt fared less well). The windshield has a spider crack on the lower driver side and a chip on the upper passenger side; this will be replaced before sale if we can find the correct replacement windshield. The headlights function as they should and are in good condition. The driver-side rear turn signal is fading, but the remaining lights and lenses are functional and consistently presentable. The wheels are free of notable flaws, with the exception of curb rash on the front driver-side wheel. The tires are 205/70 R14, and all have 2014 DOT dates. We can replace these depending on the buyer’s preference.

Interior

 interior photo

The beige interior has held up well and, overall, is presentable. The carpet is clean, but the plastic on the driver floormat is cracked. The rear center carpet section is missing. There is some light staining on the headliner under the sun visors. The white plastic throughout the interior, such as on the door cards and grab handles, has visible wear and light cracking due to UV exposure. The dashboard has four large cracks with some secondary smaller cracks. The wood trim and other plastic bits (like the window switches) also have moderate cracking. The steering wheel is presentable. The instrument cluster, steering column stalks and switches, and interior/exterior light switches are functional. The center console itself has some fade and cracking to the black plastic. The climate control blows hot and cold with no odor or noticeable delay at engine idle. The aftermarket radio functions, but should be replaced with a modern-retro unit, like the Blaupunkt or Continental VDO. Both front seats are in good condition, with the driver’s seat showing some thin cracking and bolster wear. The rear seats show light wear; the first aid kit is missing. The handle on the right rear door also does not open from the outside; it must be opened from the inside (we may fix this before sale). The trunk carpet has consistent wear, but the spare tire, tool kit, and jack are present underneath.

Mechanical

 engine photo

This 450SE has had extensive recent maintenance, which amounted to a considerable sum from the owner. The V8 engine starts on command, idles incredibly smooth, and pulls strongly when you put your foot into it. There are small typical oil seeps at the rear main seal, transmission, and power steering box, but there are no significant leaks. The transmission shifts smoothly and does not slip. There are no driveline, transaxle, or wheel bearing vibrations. The suspension is wonderfully compliant, thanks to having the shocks replaced at each corner. The brakes are strong and provide plenty of stopping power. As with any 460SE, it will need continued maintenance, but this one has had lots of recent heavy lifting. We would like to find a new owner who will enjoy it for the next chapter of its story.