1958 Mercedes-Benz Cabriolet 220S 'Ponton'
Chassis no. 180030N8507213
Engine no. 180 924 850 42 99
Mercedes-Benz reintroduced six-cylinder models to its range in 1951 with the 220 and 300 types, both of which were shown at the Frankfurt Show in the spring of that year. Both featured single overhead camshaft engines, with the valves set across the head, rather than in line, and actuated by rockers.
The 220 was powered by a 2,195cc engine which in standard form produced 80bhp at 4,600rpm. A separate chassis was retained for these models, which were replaced in 1956 by a new range featuring unitary construction bodyshells employing large, box-section side-members - hence the term 'Ponton'. All-round coil-sprung independent suspension had long been a fixture of the Mercedes-Benz range, and that of the newcomers benefited from the newly developed single-pivot rear swing axle.
A shorter wheelbase was adopted for the Cabriolet model that appeared in May 1956 and also for the Coupé introduced the following year when the Hydrak semi-automatic transmission become available as an option. Luxuriously equipped in the best Daimler-Benz tradition, these superbly constructed Gran Turismos were priced some 70% above the 220S saloon.
Only 3,429 220S coupés and cabriolets had been made when the original was superseded by the restyled 'fin tail' version in 1959, and today these elegant and exclusive limited edition Grand Tourers are highly prized.
A manual transmission model with column-mounted gear change, this 220S cabriolet was the subject in 2009 of a 'body off' restoration, with careful attention paid to quality, detail and finish. We are advised that there is no damage, rust or any other visible shortcomings, and that the body's underside has been given a protective coating. The doors, bonnet and boot close and open easily, the engine bay is clean, and the new chrome looks shiny and bright.
Described as good and tidy, the 'Old English White' paintwork is complemented by brown leather interior trim and matching canvas soft-top, the latter renewed and free of any damage or signs of use. A leather tonneau cover is provided. The wooden dashboard boasts a full complement of VDO instruments in working order. Imported into Belgium in 2009, the car has had only one owner since then and has been used sparingly. Very smartly turned out, this recently restored 'Ponton' soft-top comes with its original Certificate of Title, original manufacturer's brochure, taxation report, Belgian registration papers and invoices for maintenance since 2009.