Quad Cam Hammer: 1989 Mercedes AMG 560SEC

AMG’s enhancements have graced many Mercedes products over the years, from suspension tuning to body kits to complete posers who just a badge on the trunk lid. More rarely seen are the true bruisers, the cars that AMG breathed on in big ways with multiple enhancements across the board, including under the hood. This W126 coupe is such a car, an example with a 6.0L quad-cam AMG-built V8 and all the requisite upgrades. Find it here on eBay with bidding at $76,500 and the reserve unmet.

It should be noted, the term “Hammer” in this instance refers solely to the engine. Among AMG/Mercedes enthusiasts, “Hammer” is used with some reverence, and they will you the only true Hammer model is the W124-chassis example that AMG built. Anything else is a car with the Hammer engine. That’s not to take anything away from this W126 – just a clarification.

AMG didn’t necessarily touch the interior, aside from updating the steering wheel, and the rest of the 560’s cabin is pure 1990s Mercedes luxury. This car has around 60,000 miles and was originally built for the Japanese market, and those cars typically seem to leave Japan in very clean condition. The leather looks nicely preserved and the wood trim is surprisingly crisp.

In addition to the Quad Cam “Hammer” engine, the 560SEC benefits from numerous other enhancements. These include the full AMG widebody kit; front and rear spoilers; AMG-tuned suspension; AMG exhaust; fiberglass hood; and more. Mercedes models actually modified at the hands of AMG always command a premium – just like this one will, if it clears reserve.


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    Odd that it is a model built for the Japanese market, yet it is left hand drive

    Like 4
  2. Dougie Member

    Yeah it obviously wasn’t made for the Japanese market. I wonder what other misinformation the seller is doling out?

    Like 2
    • Mike W

      Having lived in Japan for 20+ years, not every foreign Japanese market car bothers to switch to RHD.

      Like 6
  3. Steve J

    I noticed that some high end European cars exported to Japan are left hand drive. So this is not unusual, and makes this car more acceptable to the North American market.

    Like 6
  4. peter r

    I have owned several Mercedes and BMW’s that originally sold in Japan. They were all LHD which is a prestige item there.
    The reserve on this car could easily be twice the current bid. Real “Hammers” are rare and expensive.

    Like 2
  5. djjerme

    I have a JDM E30 touring in my garage, and I personally imported it here from Japan, and it was sold new in Japan.

    It is LHD.

    The way it was explained to me (by multiple Japanese Car guys) is that High end imports were almost ALL LHD. Pedestrian cars were all RHD. That was how you could tell an upmarket import car vs domestic people mobile.

    So if you are seeing a RHD BMW/Merc/Audi/Exotic and they claim it’s from JDM, then I’d question it.

    (But what about GTR’s..blah, blah, blah…etc.) Again, these are Domestically produced cars based on base models to the JDM. So they weren’t viewed as High class, euro models and would have been RHD anyways.

    Like 5
  6. David Ulrey

    Sucks being poor! I do have some past experience with these. The absolute ONLY ‘high dollar’ car I’ve ever had any desire to own. Come on lottery!!!! 😅

    Like 1
    • Dougie Member

      I’d rather have a Bugatti La Voiture Noire. lol

  7. Dougie Member

    Thanks all for correcting my statement!

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