The Details

Mercedes R107 380SL




  • Mileage: 39,384
  • Year: 1981
  • MOT Expiry: January 2023
  • Exterior Colour: Thistle Green Metallic
  • Interior Colour: Cream Leather
  • Top speed: 127
  • 0-60mph: 9.8
  • BHP: 201
  • Transmission: 4-Speed Automatic
  • Engine Capacity: 3839cc
  • Engine Configuration: V8

Model History

The R107 chassis replaced the sought after W113 SL chassis or “Pagoda” in 1972. The R107 was produced in two variants, the SL and SLC, the SL being a two-seater convertible with a soft-top and removable hardtop.

As one of the second longest chassis series that Mercedes produced there are plenty of engine choices and variants to choose from. Volume production of the first R107, the 350SL, started in April 1971. From July 1974 the SL (and SLC) could also be ordered with a fuel-injected 2.8-litre straight-six.

Following the discontinuation of the SLC in September 1981, the 107 series continued initially as the 280, 380 and 500 SL. At this time, the V8 engines were re-tuned for greater efficiency, losing a few hp but consuming less fuel – this was largely due to substantially higher (numerically lower) axle ratios that went from 3.27:1 to 2.47:1 for the 380SL and from 2.72:1 to 2.27:1 for the 500SL. From September 1985 the 280SL was replaced by the 300SL, and the 380SL by the 420SL; the 500 SL continued and a 560SL was introduced for certain extra-European markets, notably the USA, Australia and Japan.


Thistle Green Metallic paintwork, Cream leather upholstery, Soft-top in dark brown, Removable hardtop in Thistle Green Metallic, 4-speed automatic transmission, 14-inch ‘Mexican Hat’ alloy wheels, Air conditioning, Cruise control, Electric windows, Power steering, Zebrano wood interior trim, Tailored carpet mats.


Finished in attractive Thistle Green this low mileage V8 SL looks wonderful against our studio backdrop. The paintwork appears nice and original with only a few small imperfections to report but certainly nothing to detract from the car’s overall highly impressive appearance. All the chrome is in excellent shape and the headlights are clear and crack-free, the only negatives to report here being some cloudiness to the front fog light glass. On very close scrutiny there are a couple of minor paint blemishes further evidencing the car’s honesty, namely a small blister above the front spoiler, some light marks on and around the boot lid, and a few expected chips. The dark brown soft-top also remains in great original condition with no damage to the rear windows, and the complementing green hardtop is beautifully presented.



The cream interior makes for a bright and airy place to be. The leather seats present in very good original condition having worn well with little more than some expected surface wear as evidence of the car’s 42 years of age. The cream door cards are also in great shape with no marking or discolouration, the steering wheel and gear knob show very few signs of use, and the wood trim is without any major cracks or sun damage. The cream carpets are also well presented and are fully protected in the front footwells by a set of tailored mats. Lifting the boot lid you’ll find a very clean and tidy luggage area where the spare wheel and tools can still be found beneath the carpet.


Barely run-in with only 39k miles under its belt, this low mileage R107 is a particularly fine example to drive. Its 3.8-litre V8 is as smooth as ever and the automatic ‘box shifts through the gears with ease. Reading through the history file its clear the car has always been maintained to a high standard, and upon our recent inspection everything was found to be in fine mechanical fettle, the underside also notably solid. In 2021 a new starter motor was fitted and the rear main engine seal was also replaced; this work was carried out by Mercedes-Benz Brentford and cost in excess of £2,350.


This lovely R107 sits on its original ‘Mexican Hat’ alloy wheels, all in great original condition with only a handful of light age-related marks to report. They are shod in matching Nexen tyres all round, each one with plenty of tread left. The brakes have also been checked and remain in fine operational condition.

History File

First registered in February 1981 this Thistle Green 380SL has now driven just 39k miles in the hands of only 4 registered keepers. Its history is very well documented in the accompanying paperwork, and even the original bill of sale from Puttocks Mercedes-Benz of Guildford is still present. A new speedo/odometer was fitted by Mercedes in 1984 at 4,863 miles (invoice present) and the car has been regularly maintained ever since. It was supplied new with cruise control but the air conditioning system was retro-fitted by Mercedes in 1989. The recorded service history is as follows (the mileages have been adjusted in-line with the clock change):

20/05/1981 at 461 miles
16/09/1982 at 2,925 miles
18/01/1984 at 4,571 miles
04/12/1984 at 4,863 miles
23/01/1986 at 6,425 miles
21/01/1988 at 10,123 miles
15/05/1989 at 10,843 miles
24/10/1990 at 12,326 miles
09/12/1992 at 14,115 miles
16/03/1994 at 14,598 miles
30/04/1996 at 15,165 miles
26/03/1998 at 15,685 miles
09/03/2000 at 16,865 miles
23/03/2001 at 18,686 miles
21/01/2003 at 20,701 miles
22/04/2004 at 22,353 miles
20/06/2005 at 23,253 miles
06/10/2009 at 26,250 miles
08/05/2015 at 28,511 miles
04/05/2018 at 33,112 miles
21/08/2020 at 34,684 miles

The last recorded service was carried out in August 2020 at 34k miles but in January 2021 the car did return to Mercedes where the rear main engine seal (RMS) was replaced at great expense. Since then, a full mechanical inspection has been carried out by our trusted specialist workshop where the car was given a clean bill of health. The MOT is valid until January 2023.

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