Worthy of a place on anyone’s grail list, the Mercedes-Benz 300SL is surely one of the most elegant automobiles ever created. Some 1,400 were built between 1954 and ’57, including 308 in 1956. Known as the Gullwing for the upwards opening roof-hinged doors (actually the first in the world), the Mercedes-Benz 300SL was created for well-heeled enthusiasts. And with pristine examples fetching seven figures, that still remains true today.
Low and wide, the 300SL is a masterclass in design. Bodywork curves and swells, barely making room for the 3.0L straight six. The snug cockpit seats two close friends, and behind them a reasonably capacious trunk snuggles between muscular fenders. There is chrome, but it’s restrained, like the car itself. That is, until you start the engine. Fuel injection, a novelty in ’56, produces a lusty 215hp, but it’s the noise you notice, a mechanical cacophony that portends a thrilling ride.
With 32,376 miles and only three owners in the past, this 1956 Gullwing already has a bid of one million dollars.