With only 19,171 miles from new, this incredibly original black over red Mercedes-Benz 190SL has had just 2 owners and has been thoroughly taken care of from delivery to today. In 2010 the car was treated to the very best in concours level preservation care by marque expert Bruce Adams
This continuously cared for and outstandingly original 1961 Mercedes-Benz 190SL was purchased new by Stanley Ernst of Detroit, Michigan. Shortly after buying the car, Ernst decided he would drive the car to Fort Myers, Florida where he would keep it for the next 50 years as a driver during his winters there. The car was driven sparingly but always cared for during the ownership tenure of Ernst racking up a mere 16,592 miles. In August of 2010, still well dressed in its original black paint and perfectly patina’d red leather interior, Ernst sold the car to the current owner via 190SL expert and marque authority Bruce Adams of Southern Pines, North Carolina. Since purchasing the car, the current owner has put less than 3,000 miles on the car and has exercised the vehicle (and thoroughly enjoyed!) to the tune of roughly 100 miles per month.
Bruce Adams Preservation
During the same year of purchase (2010) by the current and 2nd owner, 190SL restorer Bruce Adams of Southern Pines, North Carolina was commissioned to perform a concours level preservation job on the car to keep in tact and bring out the truly outstanding potential of the original paint, interior, engine and undercarriage surfaces. During this preservation process, the car was completely disassembled. All components were individually addressed and nearly nothing was replaced, rather original surfaces were treated in their already good original condition to bring out the best of an excellent patina’d classic. No major components, cosmetic or mechanical, were fully restored or replaced during this process.
The car was given a fresh beige soft top during the preservation process performed by Adams as the original soft top had deteriorated beyond use. Also of particular note, the engine bay and engine itself was given a full, thorough cleaning/refreshment to concours standards and a mechanical servicing was done so that the car would perform to a very high standard. Adams preservation work on the car, which included fully disassembling and addressing areas on a case by case basis to preserve all possible originality and surfaces, is fully documented through both receipts and photographs which can be furnished to interested parties. Bruce Adams thought so much of this car that he chose to feature it in his definitive 190SL book (W121 Coupe and Roadster: 190SL Touring Sports Car) as one of the most rare and original of 190’s.
The Car Today
The car today is a stunning and highly original example of the 190SL Mercedes model. It retains both its brilliantly vibrant original black paint was well as its factory original roser red leather interior. This car is rarely equipped with both hard and soft tops from the factory and comes with original books, tools, jack and spare. It is well documented regarding its provenance, mileage and work/service history. With only 19,171 miles from new, one would be hard pressed to find an example of the 190SL that checks all the right boxes as thoroughly as this car does. As a further affirmation of its originality, the car comes with its original wheels and tires, now off the car but ready for use on the show field.
In an incredibly striking color combination and an original condition throughout to be envied, this 190SL is ready for show or drive and needs nothing…a consummate, well documented, low-mileage example of the popular and elegant Mercedes-Benz cruising classic.