By modern standards, Elvis paid the equivalent of around $55,000 for the Mercedes luxury sedan.
Think about Elvis Presley's relationship with automobiles and your mind likely goes immediately to the famous singer's penchant for Cadillacs and even giving them out as gifts. However, when not driving big, American luxury cars, Elvis apparently enjoyed a Mercedes, too. His 1971 280SEL remains in pristine condition and is currently for sale in St. Louis, Missouri, for $139,900. The sedan includes paperwork showing the iconic rock star as the vehicle's original owner.
Elvis purchased the 280SEL on December 21, 1970, for $8,764 – the equivalent of $54,828 in modern money. The optional air conditioning likely made Tennessee's hot summers much more tolerable. The rock star also got the luxury sedan with power windows and a Becker Europa stereo. The car originally came in a shade of dark red, but Elvis decided to change it to Alpha Crystal Blue Metallic. The color fits the vintage Mercedes perfectly.
Buying the SEL got buyers a four-inch longer wheelbase than the smaller SE model, and they were relatively rare. According to Mercedes' figures, it produced 8,350 units of the 280 SEL, versus 91,051 examples of the 280 SE. Power came from a 2.8-liter inline-six with mechanical fuel injection that produced 158 horsepower (118 kilowatts). Elvis got his car with a four-speed automatic.
With 80,312 miles on the odometer, Elvis or his entourage apparently got good use out of the Mercedes before the singer's death in August 1977. After he passed away, the sedan went on display at a museum in Tennessee until 2016. Now, there's a chance for the gorgeous sedan with celebrity provenance to have a new owner.
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