to sign up for our Newsletter.

Newsletter No.117 February 2009

Main Image
Roll-over to View Images

Hello and welcome to the latest Newsletter.

Been missing the newsletters? It has been some time. June last year to be exact. I have been working at getting rid of the back log of workshop work and working towards our new ideal of running a restoration, or preservation, shop. I love doing the newsletters especially when I send them out and get such great responses back from them, but have just had too many other things on my plate. So, as a new year's resolution I am back to doing them.

In this newsletter I have included a few interesting facts about Mercedes-Benz history, both here in Australia and worldwide. I have also some great links for you to check out.

Please don't forget that if you have any ideas for Newsletter content please let me know.

Thanks, John & Sandra Green.


Here at M.B Spares we have always been interested in the rare and the strange when it comes to collectable Mercedes-Benz vehicles. So as a service to likeminded customers we are introducing our new Register service for these cars. Basically we are looking at models with variants of less than 100 units. For example the RHD version of the 280SE 3.5 cabriolet of which only 71 were produced.

For now we are just looking at the Crayford wagons, the 280SE 3.5 and 300SE coupe/cabriolets in RHD. If you have one of these very unique vehicles please contact me. You can see the registry here. In time we may include the 300SE LWB sedan and a few others….

Mercedes-Benz sewing machines??

So did you think that Mercedes-Benz only made cars and trucks?? Well you may be surprised to know that at various times they have made all sorts of other products. Everything from Sewing machines to type writers and more recently push bikes. Click here for a site in Dutch that details many of these products. Just move your mouse over the pictures at the top and check out the pictures. Or you could click here to check out a pushbike with an 8 speed auto gearbox!!

New E class released.

The replacement model for the E class has been launched at the Detroit Motor show. See the pictures at the top of the Newsletter to see what it looks like. Here is some of the text from the press release:

Detroit - With the new E-Class, Mercedes-Benz is presenting the pacemaker when it comes to safety, comfort and environmental compatibility in this market segment. With more than 20 new or further technical developments, this all-new saloon further consolidates the leading position of Mercedes-Benz in the luxury class. They include trailblazing innovations for safe driving that are available from no other manufacturer worldwide in this combination. Examples include the standard Attention Assist, Adaptive Main Beam Assist and automatic emergency braking, which is activated when there is acute danger of a collision.

Mercedes-Benz has improved the already exemplary long-distance comfort of the E-Class even further in the new saloon, including intelligent bodyshell technology with up to 30 percent greater rigidity, further improved seats and a newly developed suspension whose shock absorbers automatically adjust to the current driving situation. The optional air suspension now works together with an electronic damping system.

The outstanding safety and comfort of the E-Class are matched by its environmental compatibility and economy: the four- and six-cylinder engines are direct-injection units, and consume up to 23 percent less fuel than before. The combined NEDC consumption of the new four-cylinder diesel engines is just 5.3 litres per 100 kilometres, which corresponds to 139 grams of CO2 per kilometre. All the engines for the new E-Cass meet the EU5 emission standard, and in the case of the E 350 BlueTEC the emissions are already below the EU6 limits planned for 2014.

The press release also goes on to explain some of the rather amazing feats that Mercedes-Benz have achieved with the design of this new model. For example, the drag coefficient is only .25 making it the world's most aerodynamic luxury car! It also features an all new safety feature called ATTENTION ASSIST. It is a drowsiness detection system, which is standard equipment, and equipped with highly sensitive sensors that continuously monitor more than 70 different parameters. Observing the driver's steering behaviour has proved to be a particularly strong indicator: several years of practical research by Mercedes engineers have shown that drowsy drivers make minor steering errors that can often be rapidly corrected in characteristic ways. These corrections are recognised by a highly sensitive steering angle sensor.

Australian spec cars sold in the UK?

Would you believe that you could get a car in the UK, delivered by a UK dealer that was made to Australian specifications? Well, it is well known that there was a delivery system where you could order a car here from your local dealer in Australia. Then pick it up at the factory in Sindelfingan, drive it for awhile and then drop it back to them to be shipped to Australia. You then picked it up again a second time at your local dealer.

We have just acquired a 1979 450SL that has was sold by a dealer in the UK and then brought immediately to Australia. The data card shows it being sold by dealer 537, but having code 625 which makes it Australian spec, it also has an Australian compliance plate from 11/79.

Apart from this rather interesting start to its life it also has some great options like a limited slip diff and rear seat. The data card also shows that the roof used to be black, an interesting customer request. Maybe they wanted it to look like the soft top way up when the hard top was on? You can see more details on this car here.




450 SL




117985 22 045725


020025 47


0 9 537 08056

Approx. year

not defined






Great Britain (537)


mb-tex black (101)



signal red (T) (с 01.01.1963 по 31.12.1993)


black (T) (с 01.01.1963)



rear axle with limited-slip differential (с 01.11.1965 по 30.11.1991)


left rear view mirror not installed, mirror fixture mounted (с 01.09.1961 по 30.06.1964)
additional plate and rear seat bench stop for great britain (с 01.03.1967 по 31.07.1980)


hardtop mounted (с 01.02.1963 по 31.10.1980)


tempomat (cruise control) (с 01.09.1975)


central locking system (с 01.04.1970 по 31.10.1993)


outside rear view mirror, on the left (с 01.01.1963 по 31.03.1983)


paintcoat preservation (с 01.01.1964)


Behr air conditioner and electric window lifters (front doors) (с 01.04.1970)


heat-insulating glass for side and rear window panes; sedan: heated rear window pane, laminated glass; station wagon & w 201: heated rear window pane, single-sheet safety glass (с 01.11.1973 по 28.02.1989)


oil for rear axle with limited-slip differential, in canisters and containers (с 01.01.1964 по 31.01.1990)


lamp unit, asymmetrical, l.h. traffic (с 01.02.1963)


version for Australia (с 01.08.1966)


aluminium disc wheels with radial-ply tires (с 01.10.1969 по 31.12.1989)
tires with tube (с 01.01.1963 по 31.08.1965)


10 liters of fuel and mode of packing VE II (с 01.12.1965 по 31.08.1986)


tropical battery (с 01.06.1965 по 30.11.1991)


folding top fabric9001 black (с 01.08.1972)

Upcoming events.

Here is the current list of upcoming events. If you know of an event that would be of interest to our Newsletter readers please e-mail me with the details as you will see below it does not necessarily have to be an exclusively Mercedes-Benz related event. The plan is not to put each clubs entire calendar on here, just the major events. Here are a few that I know are coming up:

22nd march 2009 The Mercedes-Benz club of the ACT will be displaying their member's cars at the Shannons Wheels 2009 car show being organised by the Council of ACT Motor Clubs. This is an annual event with over 1000 classic/historic/vintage cars on display. It is held in the gardens in front of the Old parliament House and this year is being hosted by the EJ-EH Holden Club ACT. You can get more details from either the MBCACT website or from the Council of ACT Motor clubs website.

25th August 2009 . Shannons Eastern Creek Classic, an excellent event run by the NSW Council of Motor Clubs and is open to all clubs and their members. It is a great family day out and you even get a chance to do a lap of the circuit in your car!! More details here.

17th May 2009.Mercedes-benz Club of Victoria Concours d'Elegance Held in conjunction with the RACV Classic Showcase promoted by the AOMC at Flemington Racecourse. Discounted Concours entry fee when paid on or before the April Club Meeting. More details here.

13th September 2009. Mercedes-Benz club of NSW Concours d'Elegance is the highlight of the club year. A time when the Club exhibits its marque to Club members and the general public. The 2009 event will be held at Parramatta Park, Parramatta NSW. Enquiries to Karen Fail ph 02 9482-2216 orConcours Director

20th September2009.Mercedes-Benz club of the ACT annual Concours, held in conjunction with the ACT German Autofest. More details next newsletter, but you can see some pictures from the 2008 event here.

Easter 2010. Yes I know that is a long way off, but there is no harm in advance planning. The Mercedes-Benz club of WA will be celebrating their 50th birthday and running the next Bi-annual Mercedes-Benz Clubs of Australia rally at over Easter in 2010. Planning is in its very early stages at the moment, but you can get some details here.

E-mail of the month

We get so many e-mails these days and try our hardest to get them all answered promptly and to be honest it does get a bit boring some times. But then you get an e-mail like this one:

Dear Spare People

I am an old 300D (1980). My owner thinks I need some new valves or my valves need reseating. Do you guys have kits to fit my heart and what would you recommend? A complete valve transplant or rip them out of my chest and reseat them?

I also have a siezed rear break caliper and would like a kit to replaced my arthritic bits. I would like to get myself in tip top shape again because my owner is a good bloke and he did actually wash me once.

My chasis number is 12313022177686. Could you please return my message and give me an idea of wallet damage?

Thanks You may just save me from the scrap yard.

Now that is funny, but we had a problem. There were no "spare people" to reply so we had one of the regular workers send the replyJJ

Links of the month.

- Many newsletters ago we had some pictures and details from a chap who races a W111 230S fintail in South Africa, well he recently contacted me with news of a new website about his car and other Fintail racers around the world. It is an excellent site and well worth a look.

- Here is a great story about a Bugatti, read here for the story and here for more details of the amazing history from the guys selling it.

- Stainless steel cars, now that is a good idea….

- Foe those of you who have been reading the newsletters for some time, you may recall the short history of Horch cars and how the name was lost as part of the carve up of Germany following WW2. Well a great story about the last Horch, which was actually made after the war and in Western Germany, has come to light. Click here to read the story. From looking at the pictures you can see how the inspiration came from the Mercedes-Benz type 300, and if you look close you can even see a few Mercedes-Benz parts on it like the boot handle…

- Click here for an interesting page with pictures of all the Mercedes-Benz specials made for the Pope over the years. There are some truly amazing cars here, like have you ever seen a W108 Landaulet??

Mercedes-Benz made in Australia??

Here is something to win a bet with at the pub… From 1958 to around 1964 Mercedes Benz passenger cars and commercial vehicles are assembled in Victoria by Australian Motor Industries Limited, through its subsidiary, Mercedes Benz (Australia) Pty Limited. There are still plenty of these cars getting around today. You can identify them by two things.

- The engine bays were painted black not the same colour as the rest of the car like Germany production examples were.

- The 7th digit of the chassis number is a 6 not a 2!

These cars are not worth any more or less than the German made versions, but are certainly an interesting part of Australia's rich motoring history. I have put two pictures of the production line at the top of the newsletter. Just click on them to see full size and then click again to close them.

Cars for sale.

As you can imagine, lots of action in the pre loved car department over the last six months. I have only listed the recent car sales below and what we currently have in stock.

Don't forget Sandra's Viano 7 seat van, have had this for sale for some time and I must admit it is a difficult vehicle to sell. The main problem is that most people don't even know that Mercedes-Benz do a "Tarago" style people mover. This has been our family transport for the last two years and is a great vehicle for a large active family. It has been a wonderful car, over Christmas we drove to Melbourne, across to Adelaide and back via the Hay plains averaging 9lts per 100kms for the trip including driving around Melbourne and Adelaide. Not bad for such a big car.

You can check out all the cars we have for sale here.

New cars into stock include:

450SL Roadster, 1979 great history

300SE sedan 1988 model

E280 sedan (more details soon)

Cars sold include:

E430 1999 model

E320 sedan 1994 model

300E 1986 only 145000kms

E320 cabriolet only 78000kms

Also in stock we have:

280CE coupe 1978 only 154000kms

450SLC coupe, 1979 immaculate

Viano Ambiente

ML320 CDI with full options.

170S, classic sedan

170SD, classic Diesel sedan

W114 long wheel base sedan project

So that's it for another newsletter . Hope you liked what you saw. If you have any ideas or want to contribute any articles, pictures or other material please e-mail me here. Also, don't forget that you can check out the old newsletters here
Thanks, John Green.