Race Car Project: 2008 Mercedes-Benz CLK350

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Sometimes you will look at a car and just know that it will either be a restoration project, a potential daily driver, or it will only be good for parts. Others will come under the heading of “what on Earth am I going to do with this?” This Mercedes CLK probably fits into the latter category, so it will be interesting to see what suggestions our Barn Finders can come up with for this vehicle. If you have an idea and feel like acting on it, then the car is located in Las Vegas, Nevada. It is being sold with a salvage title and is listed for sale here on eBay.

The reality with this Mercedes is that it is a case of what you see is what you get. The car was being built as a race car for the Blancpain World Challenge, but the project has stalled at its current point. The CLK35 body shell is stripped bare, and it has been fitted with steel CLK63 quarter panels. The roll cage is all present, but it is currently only tacked into place, so could be removed if needed.

As someone who has built race cars, one thing that I find quite surprising is the fact that the car wasn’t media blasted before construction. This would have given the builder a clean slate to work with and would have ensured that all of the sound deadening material was removed, saving vehicle weight. Having said that, with the car in its current state, it’s still not too late to do that if the new owner wants to. I’m also not sure whether there is any additional panel-work that is included, such as fenders, a hood, or deck lid. There are no mechanical components, but the owner is willing to negotiate on some suspension and other parts, as he apparently has a fair inventory to choose from.

This Mercedes is something a bit different, and I really can’t be sure what you would do with it. I have seen a similar car fitted with a Chevrolet small-block and a Hewland transaxle. This gave the car great weight distribution and made for a pretty impressive race car. Returning it to road-going condition would be a huge job that could also be ruinously expensive. The owner has set a BIN price of $4,000 for the Mercedes, but there is also the option to make an offer. So, over to you now for some great ideas.

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  1. michael h streuly

    Would be an intresting car for land speed racing could even get you in the 200 mph club.

    Like 1
  2. Dan Parker

    I JUST bought an 08 CLK convertable in great condition for $3,200.00. Delivered to my door for $250.00.

    Like 10
  3. Fiete T.


    Like 0
  4. Adam Wright

    Don’t fall for the CLK trap, it’s a LeBaron, badged as a Benz. Worst POS I’ve owned in years, and I’ve owned lots of Benzes, I own two right now, a 99 C43 and a 2011 E350 Cab. I had the CLK for a year and it was in the shop 4 times. And the motors implode. My mechanic said if the check engine light comes in, it’s the two minute warning, your engine is about to go boom.

    Like 0
  5. Pete

    Wow the good idea fairy really had it’s way with the owner of this car. This cat is pretty delusional if he thinks someone else will sign up for his good idea. I have a 99 CLK320 I will sell you for half his asking price.

    Like 0
  6. Al

    I can visualize this thing, crushed into a cube for easy transport or to act as a book-end.

    I too own a Merc., and it’s expensive to maintain, however I can fit in the drivers-seat and drive it.

    The year I bought it, I could fit comfortably in only four other vehicles: a Merc. S-class; Porsche Panamera and Cayenne as well as a RR Wraith. The only other car I could fit in, but only as a passenger was a Smart.

    Like 3
  7. James

    You need to get a different mechanic… especially a guy who knows how to read n fix Benz

    Like 0
  8. Bryan W Cohn

    Sad thing is, its a pro level cage build. While I can’t speak for the welds the cage design is to current FIA/IMSA/PWC specs. A cage of that quality and time is easily $4000-$5000. Trouble is, its a diamond inside a turd.

    As you’ll need a complete second CLK to build a race car it just seems like a silly project to take on…

    Like 0
  9. alain

    I own 2 cabriolets, a 99′ 320 and a 01′ 200K. Great cars and I love them. They are pretty reliable and really comfortable long distance cars. The body of the first generation clk is a beauty. And they are cheap to buy and reasonnable to maintain with mechanical components from mainstream mercs. I would buy this for the price of the roll cage and find another car to host that piece.

    Like 0

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