1985-1991 Mercedes-Benz W126 500 SEL, SEC
W126 chassis cars were ones that have put the Mercedes-Benz S class to the map. Although W116 series debuted the S class moniker, it wasn’t until 1979 and W126’s arrival that the S class received its status as one of the most luxurious car lineups in the world. Over the years, Mercedes offered plethora of different W126 options – some available in the US, some don’t. 500 SE, SEL and SEC were one of those that weren’t available here, so German automaker resorted to grey market.
What Americans did get after the ’85 facelift, are the V8-powered 560 SEL (long-wheelbase sedan) and SEC (coupe) models. These 5.5L V8-powered flagship luxury cars developed close to 300 horsepower, but ran through gasoline reserves with devastating quickness. Still, they’re the most desirable of all W126 models in the US market. Even this, however, doesn’t impact their prices in any major way. As far as cheap classic cars go, these are among the best offerings. Sedan will cost you around $6,000 on average, while coupe warrants $2,000 atop of that. Although parts don’t come cheap, 80’s Mercedes-Benz’s are considered to be the last true quality cars German automaker has produced. That said, their engines are impeccable for at least 200,000 miles and have, on more than one occasion, passed the 500,000 mile mark.