PRICE £47,000


Mercedes-Benz has a long history of success in endurance rallying, and won the European Rally Championship four times during the 1950s and ’60s. On his way to claiming the last of those titles in 1962, Eugen Böhringer took victory in the Tulpenrallye, the Rally Acropolis, Rally Sweden, Rajd Polski, and the gruelling Liège-Sofia-Liège.

The legendary German company was still winning such events as late as the 1970s, the 450SLC of Andrew Cowan and Colin Malkin taking victory on the 30,000km Vuelta a la América del Sud in 1978. The following year, the factory 450SLCs took a dominant one-two-three-four result on the Ivory Coast Rally.

The robust engineering that was a hallmark of Mercedes-Benz during that period played a key role in those successes. As the precursor to the S-Class, the luxurious W108 was the embodiment of that ethos when it was launched in 1965. Initially offered with the choice of 2.5-litre or 3-litre engines, it gained a 2.8-litre ‘six’ as part of a 1967 update and there would eventually be the option of a 4.5-litre V8 at the very top of the range. Production lasted until 1972, when it was replaced by the W116 S-Class.

This Mercedes-Benz W108 is a left-hand-drive 280S that has proven itself to be a reliable, practical and class-winning historic rally car. The combination of 2.8-litre six-cylinder engine – running on carburettors rather than the more complex fuel-injection – and manual four-speed gearbox makes it a simple, robust choice of car, and it’s superbly presented and prepared throughout.

Inside, it features a bolt-in roll-cage, Recaro seats, TRS harnesses and a handheld fire extinguisher. Navigation equipment includes a Monit G-200 and a Terratrip 303, which has a separate driver’s display. There is also a pair of digital stopwatches, a Garmin Montana GPS, and a map light, while the front seats have been replaced by more comfortable alternatives and additional storage has been added beneath the rear seat.

As befits a car that has been used enthusiastically on long-distance events, substantial guards have been fitted underneath the Mercedes, braided brake lines installed, and a high-capacity fuel tank fitted in the boot. Twin Facet fuel pumps then feed through to a pair of Filter King fuel filters in the engine bay.

The 280S successfully completed the 2013 Peking to Paris Motor Challenge and the 2015 Sahara Challenge, on which it finished second in Classic category. It then won the Classic class on the 2018 Himalayan Challenge, a three-week event that was referred to at the time as being one of the toughest rallies that the Endurance Rally Association had ever run. Adverse weather meant that the route had to be changed and simply reaching the finish was a considered to be a major achievement.

Now being offered for sale, this Mercedes-Benz 280S has proven itself to be a winner on some of the most challenging events in the world of historic rallying, and it would be the ideal choice for anyone looking for a simple, reliable and competitive car to use on such events.

The car is currently with Rally Preparation Services sister Company, the RPS storage facility and available for inspection. All viewings and test drives welcomed through direct contact with Rally Preparation Services.

All viewings and test drives welcomed by appointment at Rally Preparation Services.

All enquiries please contact us on or telephone +44(0)1993 358009

  • 2800cc six-cylinder OHC 140bhp
  • Twin downdraft carburettors
  • Skidded exhaust
  • High capacity centrally mounted fuel tank
  • Twin electronic fuel pumps
  • Mercedes 4 speed gearbox
  • Bilstein rear dampers
  • Full roll cage
  • TRS competition harnesses
  • Handheld fire extinguisher
  • PIAA auxiliary lamps


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