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Led Zeppelin Connection: 1972 Mercedes 220

This unusual 1972 Mercedes-Benz 220 is unique for a few reasons, starting with its gray-market / Euro-spec features (glass headlamps, slim European bumpers), as well as being an ex-British market car with right-hand drive steering. The intrigue builds based on the seller’s claim it likely belonged to Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham. Not going to lie, this would be a nice garage partner to my RHD 1980 BMW 320. Find it here on eBay in Montana with a $9,995 Buy-It-Now.

First, the obvious stuff: the car does have rust in the lower body sections, and the paint is quite dead / sun-damaged. The seller discloses these issues, but doesn’t elaborate on running condition beyond the presence of a radiator and extra cooling system parts possibly indicating a cooling issue. The engine has turned over but he has no plans to attempt to get it running. You can still make out the “Great Britain” sticker to the left of the driver’s side taillight – neat piece of its history.

The typical Mercedes durability is on full display in the interior, and the original steering wheel still presents nicely against the simple but attractive dash. The OEM (and likely valuable) Becker or Blaupunkt radio is gone, which is a shame. Manual transmission and crank windows both confirm this car’s overseas market origins, and the RHD configuration adds that extra dose of funkiness that gets everybody looking twice at you in traffic. How this car ended up in Bozeman has got to be a fascinating story.

Here’s what the seller believes is the biggest clue to Bonham’s ownership: This sticker is of Icarus, a Greek mythological figure, who was found on a few Led Zeppelin album covers. That sticker, along with the car’s British market origins, do make for at least an intriguing story about this 220, but it shouldn’t be used as a factor in determining value unless a paper trail proves ownership. The seller is offering a $500 reward to anyone who provides evidence of Bonham connection.

Comments

  1. Mike

    If it’s got an 8-track of Houses of the Holy in the glovebox, then bingo! It’s Bonham’s car.

    • glen

      Agreed, can’t argue with such irrefutable evidence.

  2. Chuck

    Saw a red corvette , could have belonged to Prince

    • TriPowerVette

      @Chuck – Respectfully; even though your comment was hilarious, it is factually inaccurate.

      The Moron, Formerly Known As The Nut Case Who Ruined Batman, also ruined (at least his idea of) the Corvette driving experience. “Little Red Corvette” so gayed up the Corvette, that it would not surprise me if someone who were unfamiliar with Corvette, were persuaded to look no further into ownership simply because of that song.

      He clearly never owned one.

      • John b

        I respectfully disagree- little red corvette obviously shows the lure of a woman and a sports car at the same time. An intelligent styled song that unfortunately are barely written anymore :(

      • grant

        Little Red Corvette was clearly about a woman. Nice homophobia though.

        Like 2
  3. Victor Anderson

    duhhh…just contact Jason Bonham and ask if it was his dad’s car.

  4. Miguel

    What would one of these cars be worth if it was in perfect condition?

  5. leiniedude leiniedude Member

    Unsure how much value is added to this rig, if it was his. Because a rock star died in his own vomit. Not so much for me. Perhaps for the morbid, Always liked the the two headed axe of Jimmy Page though. And prefered the drumming of Cozy Powell. Who also died while driving his Saab 9000. Kind of glad I never made it to Rockstar status now.

  6. Coventrycat

    I had a Grateful Dead sticker on my 74 Impala. Jerry owned it, because he looked right at me during the solo of Sugaree and told me so.

  7. Rex Kahrs Member

    Did I hear the story right?….Bonham was on the drug Antabuse to curb his bad drinking habit. The night he died, he had dinner with Paul and Linda McCartney, and after dinner they went to their respective homes. Later that night Bonham drank, which caused the intended reaction from the Antabuse, but unfortunately
    the reaction was so severe that it killed him.

  8. Darren Dover

    Wasn’t that Keith moon who died after dinner with Paul?

    • grant

      John Bonham died at Jimmy Page’s house, in a basement bedroom after a night of drinking and recording Zeppelin’s last album. With that said, if this seller really thinks he can pass this off as Bonham’s car based on it being the proper age, Eurospec, and some poorly copied album artwork, I have a ’92 Lumina he might be interested in. It was a Pace Car of some sort, obviously owned by Dale Earnhardt.

  9. Rex Kahrs Member

    Ah yes, Keith Moon, that sounds right. Sorry, I should have check Wikipedia before posting.

  10. Rodney

    I assume the DNA tests of the vomit stains on the carpets will add some value.

  11. Manuel

    John Bonham owned a ’72 Jensen Interceptor, here we can see its remains recently sold > https://www.carandclassic.co.uk/car/C921334

    I’m not sure it’s a good idea to bought a car originally purchased new by such a self-destructive first owner ;-)

  12. Henry Drake

    George Costanza once bought a LeBaron owned by John Voight. Confirmed by Tim Whatley, DDS.,

  13. ccrvtt

    I happen to own a numbers-matching 2001 Chrysler Town & Country that was ridden in by a guy whose cousin’s best friend once sat next to Elvis Presley’s bass player at a Waffle House in Tulsa.

    That alone adds another $10 to my asking price.

  14. OA5599

    If it comes from the land of the ice and snow from the midnight sun, where the hot springs flow and includes the hammer of the gods…

    Then it might check out as authentic.

  15. Jeff Lavery Staff

    Glad to see the discussion here. This is otherwise a $3K car all day long – this guy is banking on a fool and their money parting with that extra $6K in the asking price.

  16. Dolphin Member

    I thought for a couple seconds that this seller might be right about some rock star having owned this Benz years ago. But when I did the calculation I was surprised to find that the value added came to $0.00.

  17. Madmatt

    I don’t think 1 of “Bonzo”s bass drums would fit in that trunk,
    thus it couldn’t have been his…!

  18. T Mel

    Tomorrow on BFs; John Voight’s LeBaron convertible!

  19. Randall Certain

    Did Jon spell his name with an “h”?

    • Miguel

      You didn’t get the referrence?

      • leiniedude leiniedude Member

        Sorry Miguel, I did not get the reference either. What I will say is I love this site. Kind of a Mad Magazine for car people. What is the reference? Thanks and take care, Mike.

      • Miguel

        That was a Sienfeld episode. I think Jon Voight does spell it Jon. George bought a Lebaron Convertible because he was told John Voight had owned it. It was a different Voight, that was the joke.

  20. John b

    All jokeing aside….my great uncle sang the opening theme somg to Speed Racer. (Imbeing serious)

    • grant

      If you’re not joking, that’s cool as hell!

  21. DaveCarrera4

    Bonham was one of the greatest rock drummers to ever lay down a track or play live. That said, trying to pass off a car as belonging to him is an utter joke, without a shred of proof. Oh and the Icarus thing was not “on a couple of album covers”. It was the logo for Swansong, Zeppelin’s own recording label, first seen on their double album, Phyical Graffiti. I recall it going round and round on the Pioneer turntable I just sold (that did not belong to Jimmy Page).

  22. Long live Bonzo

    Obviously no real Zep fans commenting here. The Icarus shown is not “some album cover artwork” as stated by another, but the symbol for the band’s own Swan Song record label. And Bonzo died at Jimmy Page’s house after rehearsing for their upcoming U.S. tour, not for any album. John Bonham is widely recognized as the greatest rock drummer in music history, and you will get no argument from me on that.

  23. Pete

    John Bonham did own many cars, of all different kinds. Him owning a MB is actually possible, it being this one? Well as the seller states he wants someone to come up with a paper trail to prove it. He is to lazy to beat the bushes himself so he just gonna roll with the possibility it could be. SMDH. There is a TV special out there that shows Bonzo raising hell in a few cars that he did own and a MB ain’t one of them. You can find that on youtube I think.

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