500-C North Congress Avenue :: Evansville, IN 47715-2493
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Year: 1985
Make: Mercedes-Benz
Model: 500SEL W126 Sedan
Ext.Color: Anthracite Grey met.
Int.Color: Light Grey MBTex
Mileage: 93,430
Trans Type: Auto
Very nice condition inside and out heavily optioned, one of the truly hand-built sedans,  these W126 series have tons of eye appeal and are still very luxurious, 1-family owned since new and athlete celebrity ownership.
1 key - 0 remotes
Price: $9,950.00 best offer


*Click on the above thumbnails to view full screen photographs of this automobile.  More photos available upon request.

Additional Details:

(VIN: WDBCA37D9FA182299), anthracite grey met. / light grey MBTex interior, 4-speed auto trans, 93,430 original miles.

It's hard to imagine a 1980’s car that was more iconic or better built and more over-engineered than the majestic W126.

It’s one of the last true hand built Mercedes-Benz sedans that had bank-vault like build quality.  Introduced to the public in

1980, 1985 was the last year the 500SEL was available for the U.S. market, but continued in Europe until 1991.  This

example was built in 07/1985 and was purchased new in New Jersey by New York Yankee 1st baseman Don Mattingly

on 09/25/1985.  This was the same year that Don won the AL MVP award.  It is in excellent condition inside and out and

the CarFax shows no accidents.  It was owned by Don until 08/11/2009 when ownership was transferred to his son Jordan,

at 85,190 miles.  The car was driven by his son from then until about 3 years ago when he started driving a Suburban an

the Mercedes was parked and used only on special occasions.  In the Summer of 2017 we retrieved the car from their car

barn and sent it to local marque specialist Foreign Performance where the fuel was drained from the tank and the car was

completely inspected and serviced, including a new water pump, fluids and filters, hose, belts, etc.  We installed a new set

of BF Goodrich Advantage T/A tires and completely detailed this W126 inside and out!  The family debated keeping the

car and finally decided to put it on the market and let it go to a new home.  The car is pretty much stock except for a set of

aftermarket chrome 16” rims, it has been lowered to Euro ride height and has a cat-back dual exhaust system installed.  It

runs and drives very well and is cosmetically excellent!  If you are a baseball fan the new owner can receive some auto-

graphed items from Don, a photo of him with the car, etc.  Overall an extremely nice example of a W126 with low original

mileage and 1-family athlete celebrity ownership.


Four-speed automatic transmission with a topographical sensor to monitor the vehicle and gas pedal position.  The transmission
was the first to reduce acceleration on a downhill and maintain position without the use of brake pedal after coming to a complete
stop on a steep incline.  The transmission also featured a limp mode in case of electronic failure.  The transmission was designed
to start in second gear for a smoother launch and could be switched on and off in European and North American models with an
S/W switch to allow for a more performance orientated response when needed.

Anti-lock braking system, ABS (introduced in the W116) was optional until 1986 in all models except the 500SEL and 500 SEC
which came with ABS as standard equipment.

Mercedes-Benz was the first to offer a traction control system (TCS) or acceleration slip regulation (ASR) to prevent wheel spin.

Mercedes -Benz offered the first cruise control system that self adjusted to maintain a constant speed regardless of incline or
decline in the road surface.

Two-way powered, dual stage heated rear "Chesterfield" bench seat (pre-1990 SEL) with four-way manually adjustable rear
headrests standard on the 500 and 560SEL models.

Driver side airbags were introduced on the 1981 models. The passenger side airbag was introduced in 1986 as an option (standard
from 1985 on 500 SEL and SEC) and standard on all models in 1991.

Eight-way powered, dual stage heated front seats, with two setting memory functions for both front occupants to retain positions of
power adjustable steering column and seat position for driver; and seat position for front passenger. The seat heaters were standard
on the 560SEL / SEC, and an option on other models.

Power tilt & sliding sunroof.  Power and heated front *and* rear seats.  Power steering wheel.  Lowered to Euro height, chrome rims.

Crumple zones to absorb impact during an accident.

Seat belt pre tensioners that provided a loose fitting belt under normal driving conditions and tightened when the car sensed
conditions that could lead to an accident such as sudden braking.

A fully automatic climate control system that used an interior temperature sensor to adjust the interior heating or cooling.

W126 Specifications:
Engine manufacturer:  Daimler-Benz M117 E50
Engine type:  spark-ignition 4-stroke
Fuel type:  petrol (gasoline)
Fuel system:  Bosch K-Jetronic indirect injection
Charge system:  naturally aspirated
Valves per cylinder:  2
Cylinders alignment:  V 8
Displacement:  4,973 cm3 / 303.9 cui
Horsepower net:  170 kW / 231 PS / 228 hp (DIN)
Torque net:  405 Nm / 299 ft-lb

Transmission:  4 speed automatic
Brakes:  Front disc / rear disc with ABS
Power Steering:  Recirculating ball
Front Suspension:  Independent
Rear Suspension:  Independent

Length:  5,135 mm / 202.2 in
Width:  1,820 mm / 71.7 in
Height:  1,440 mm / 56.7 in
Wheelbase:  3,070 mm / 120.9 in
Fuel capacity:  90 liter / 23.8 U.S. gal / 19.8 imp. gal
Drag coefficient (Cw-Wert):  0.37

1985 Mercedes-Benz 500SEL: Resplendent in its Four Place Glory ...
By Reed Hitchcock

We have written a lot about the Mercedes W126 S-class (you know, when we get around to writing at all!), but for me that’s largely because they are among the best luxo-barges ever produced.  Modern enough to offer an excellent driving experience, and old enough that they’re not entirely bogged-down with technology certain to strand you in some catastrophic symphony of warning lights.  Besides, they are so completely logical in their engineering and design – my Dad always referred to his as fitting together like a Chinese puzzle – that even incompetent hack mechanics like me can wrench on them.

Okay, first things first: given the choice I would prefer either a Euro-spec 500 or a U.S.-spec 560 to a U.S. 500, mainly due to the fact that for our market the good folks made them heavier to comply with DOT and made them slower to deal with EPA. In fact, in U.S. specification the 500SEL’s 5.0 liter M117 V8 delivered only a paltry 184hp, although torque at 247 lb/ft meant that acceleration was perfectly acceptable for the day in the low-mid 8 second range to 60 mph and top speed was well over 134mph. That said, the Euro 5.0 and the 5.6 liter M117s could pull 6.5-7.2 second 0-60 times and top speeds nearing 150mph. Regardless, the U.S. 500SEL is a very nice cruiser and can certainly get out of its own way – and at this point I would assert that condition and options can trump some of the debate about power plants.

There are a couple of things, however, that would most definitely need to be addressed on this car. First, those headlights. It’s no secret among my Car Geek friends that I loathe U.S. specification headlights on any classic Mercedes. The W126, in particular, was designed with aerodynamics at the forefront of the thought process. To then slap these hideous sealed-beam atrocities with the profile of small billboards on the otherwise sleek front end – well, it just needs to be corrected.  Budget about $500 for the job, assuming you can follow simple instructions and do it yourself.  Second, by today’s standards, the 14" wheels are simply substandard.  Besides, it’s hard to even find decent rubber in the right size.  As a purist, I am a fan of OEM-style 15" “bundt” alloys which can be found all day long on eBay for between $800 and $1,200 for a set, but there are cheaper and larger options that work alright, the best of which for my money being the Tire Rack ASA 16" 8-hole style which can be had for about $450 / set.  16-hole 15" late W126 alloys are also a common upgrade.  Any of these will improve handling somewhat and open up the choice of available tires.  And they all fill the wheel wells nicely.  The final exterior touch would be to replace the big U.S. bumpers with the svelte European versions, but to me that’s more time and money than it’s worth.  I will tell you that the TTS team is divided on this matter….

It is this back seat, however, that makes this car special.  Ticking the order box for this option basically gave buyers the “executive” package complete with individual heated, reclining rear seats with no center seat – assumedly because you need that space for your very important paperwork or your slick 80s-era mobile phone suitcase or portable fax machine.  It’s pretty trick, and you’re not likely to see another W126 with this option at your local Mercedes concours.  All that would make this option even more rare would be either velour (which would likely have long ago disintegrated) or buffalo leather – which is really a pretty awesome suede-ish leather which was saved for the most exclusive of executive sedans like this and the BMW 745i.

And at this point you may be wondering what the big deal is, but that’s just it: you have to be a special brand of geek for this to turn you on, and I wouldn’t look at this feature as some great future collectible Mercedes thing.  With over 800,000 126 cars produced, these will never be Gullwing collectible – especially the sedans. In the spirit of full disclosure, as I write this I am impatiently awaiting the arrival of my own W126 sedan – a 300SD.  I’m buying it because I am partial to the diesel, and mine comes with the fairly-unusual-for-the-1985-and-earlier rear headrest option. It ain’t four place seats, but it’s still tickles my inner Geek.  Regardless of the W126, a well-maintained one, even 24 years-on from the newest one, can be a reliable daily driver with both gas- and diesel-powered versions delivering mileage well over 400,000 without major rebuild.  Change the oil, tend to the little things, and drive it until it dies.  Or (and maybe more likely) until you do.

Picks:  Paint is excellent with no mentionable dents, dings or scratches, it shows only the normal light wash marks in

the clearcoat and has very minimal rock pecks or road rash, the exterior chrome is excellent and the interior is very nice.

The carpeting shows very little wear and the seats look as-new - the only pick is the driver seat has very light color wear

on the bolster. The headliner is like new and shows no signs of sagging. The interior wood is very nice and only the

center console area shows any sun fading or light rippling. The glass is all original with no chips or cracks, and the dash

is also excellent showing only 1 minor crack on the top corner of the gauge cluster pod. Factory radio has been replaced

with a Satellite radio ready Pioneer in-dash CD. The toolkit is complete and the spare tire is in place. The a/c is also

empty and would need to be diagnosed and re-filled. Although it has been well maintained the service records were lost

over the years during a divorce and move. Photos show the condition so please request and review them.

Numerical Condition Evaluation:

(1 denotes Very Poor / Item needs replacement, 10 denotes Excellent / Showroom New)


  Conditions of Sale:  All vehicles presented on this site are represented as accurately as possible and to the best of our knowledge at the time of listing.  While every reasonable effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the above data, mistakes regarding hp ratings, options, etc. can be made.  Content is based on inspection, research, or information provided from previous owners and any paperwork that may be available to us.  We make every effort possible to ensure all of the equipment on our cars is in working order, unless noted as non-operational in the listing above.  It is the customer’s sole responsibility to verify the accuracy of any claims to originality, history, equipment, or other information provided.  BMI is not responsible for misprints in content or pricing.  I have also done my best to be very honest and very critical about the cosmetic and mechanical condition of this vehicle. Of course, it is not possible to pick-up on every single detail or flaw. Please keep expectations realistic as this is a pre-owned vehicle, and I have personally found blemishes on brand new undriven vehicles. If you are an exceptionally detailed oriented person, please contact me to verify any information directly, and I will do my best to specifically photograph anything you request and to answer any of your questions to the best of my ability.

All vehicles are sold AS-IS unless otherwise noted.

BMI reserves the right to change pricing without notice or end the listing at any time.  BMI charges a $185.00 document fee for all retail transactions. 
Purchase deposits given on vehicles are non-refundable.
Pricing does not include any state tax, tag, title, or registration fees.



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500-C North Congress Avenue :: Evansville, IN 47715-2493
(Office) 812-476-2281 :: (Fax) 812-476-2284 :: email me

Office Hours: Monday - Friday - By Appointment Only
Saturday - By Appointment Only
Sunday - Closed, per state law