Fintail with Sunroof! 1962 Mercedes-Benz 220SE

Even before Mercedes-Benz excellence included super-sedans with monster engines and techno-wizardry like heated door handles and electronic back scratchers, the company produced highly capable upscale sedans with advanced technology. Factory fuel injection punctuates the key difference between this 1962 Mercedes-Benz 220SE outside Fredericksburg, Virginia and nearly every American sedan offered in 1962. Offered for sale here on Craigslist, the once-handsome sedan seeks a new owner to revive its utility after a long hiatus from the open road. At the asking price of $2900, only fear of repairing a 60 year-old fuel-injected German car stands between someone and their dream. Thanks to reader Chuck F. for spotting this barn-fresh find.

Even in rough condition it’s easy to see what an interesting vehicle Mercedes sent to America 17 years after the end of World War II. Fans of the “three on the tree” need to try this 220’s four speed column-shifted manual transmission, but what should we call it? “Quad on the Rod?” Despite being arguably the most fascinating aspect of the car, the mass-produced 2.2L (134 cid) inline six cylinder engine didn’t rate a photo in this car’s listing. While American manufacturers dabbled with low-volume injected cars, Mercedes had graduated past the training wheel phase. The 220 SE came standard with a fuel injected engine at a time when carburetors atomized fuel and air for most of the world’s internal combustion engines. Check out EBizAutos for a look at the sweet 120 HP 2.2.

Modest compared to the towering fins sailing out of Detroit, the 220 SE’s shiny trimmed finlets earn this generation MB the moniker “fintail,” or Heckflosse in its native German.

A factory sunroof adds interest, fresh air, and rarity. Listed as a “complete car,” this 220 likely needs attention from stem to stern. The ideal buyer probably does not have a 1962 Super Duty Pontiac in their garage, but I could see myself owning both! Would you restore this fuel-injected fintail?

Comments

  1. mike

    Love fintails.This can be saved…all you need is a lot of money.

    Like 3
  2. Michelle Rand Staff

    Requires cubic dollars to bring back.

    Like 2
  3. Dano

    My grandfather had one just like this one.Love riding around in it with the smell of cherry tobacco in the air!

    Like 3
  4. Troy

    Scrap it its still on the trailer

    Like 1
  5. Annabananas

    I had one of these in college. It was a 1965 220 SE with the sunroof in coffee exterior with a cigarette cream interior… Don’t let the restoration intimidate you the hardest part is the mechanical fuel injection that can be rebuilt in a weekend on a bench. I know I’ve done it

    Like 1
  6. Edward Sel

    I disagree, Troy – the body is straight, #1, and while there are some chrome trim pieces missing (at the front, primarily), the chrome on the fins is still there and shiny – no real body rust to see, and the paint is only oxidized. The pic of the sun/moon roof doesn’t show any water leakage, and the front seats aren’t rotted out at all, the headliner isn’t sagging, and unless the mice have been at it, it could be a relatively straightforward restore – no mention of how many miles, but once you got the drivetrain/chassis ‘sorted out’ it would run forever – like PANZER! Oh yeah, and a gasoline model in 1962? It would be interesting to know a. How long this model was produced, and b. How many produced for/shipped to the U.S. market (left hand drive, etc.) – I would guess not that many – and with the fuel injection, might as well throw a turbo in there – probably enough room under the hood – heh heh – how you say, mmm… Auto BAHN, ya? YA!

    Like 1
  7. DON

    Back in the early 1980s one of these ( basic body style, hard to figure out the years) came into our salvage yard. It was white and red like this one, but at the time it was just a 20 something year old car, and it was relegated to the crusher . I was amazed when they put the loader forks through the windshield and it blew into a million pieces- it was tempered safety glass , but not laminated ! We never got another one so I dont know if it was an imported grey market car or if Mercedes didnt use laminated glass in these bodies.

  8. Edward Sel

    Don – I forget what the Euro standard was (if I ever knew) – I was surprised to learn how long the American use of laminated glass had been in place… maybe TSG is actually an improvement of laminated and MB was ahead of America in the standard, like shoulder harnesses in Volvos – it kind of seems like U.S. market vehicles use TSG that is also laminated these days – not sure on that.

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