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Update on the Special Edition Benz – 1996 Mercedes-Benz SL500 US 500 Edition

As the bidding week draws toward its half-way point, we wanted to bring the spotlight back onto our special edition SL500. As one of only forty designed and customized for the US Grand Prix, this SL500 indeed is a unique collector’s car. Of the three available colors for the US 500 editions, this SL was coated in Imperial Red (582) and benefits from the 1995 model revisions, which included new bichromatic taillights, a reduction in fender vents, and sleeker bumper styling. However, all US 500 editions were optioned with the SL1 package as standard equipment. That package further altered the exterior styling by equipping the model with aerodynamic AMG front and rear bumpers and side skirts, projector-beam front fog lights, and 18” AMG Monoblock alloy wheels with high-performance tires. The current owner has fitted newer Dunlop tires to the wheels, however.

The cabin is a comfortable place for driver and passenger, as the SL500 came with many regular equipment items. Automatically dimming rearview mirrors, a security system, power mirrors and windows, automatic climate control, cruise control, and a 6-speaker Bose sound system with cassette player are only some of the substantial standard offerings. Parchment leather (265) was chosen for the fully-electric sports seats, steering wheel, door panels, and center console and, as expected for only 6,000 miles, shows no wear. Complementing the beautiful, tan leather is burl walnut trimmings around the interior – specifically the center stack and steering wheel. Thick tan carpeting and matching floor mats featuring colored US 500 logos and the Mercedes-Benz name complete the interior fashioning.

A quad-cam 5.0-liter was used in all SL500 and, when new, was capable of sending 315-horsepower and 347 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels. In 1995, most of this motor was revised to provide better power delivery and fuel efficiency. The DME, crankshaft, valves, pistons and electronic ignition system were all changed for further performance potential. The four-speed transmission was also reworked with a fifth gear and better electronic management software that made shifts quicker and better-recognized the vehicle’s performance to initiate shifting. Our example has service records dating back to 2006, and most recently all of the fluids were replaced for a road trip. Also optioned to all US 500 editions was Mercedes’ new Electronic Stability Program, which can be deactivated by a center console switch.

With the sale beginning to close down, this is the perfect time to get an extremely rare Mercedes sports car. Not only are all of the service records provided, but also the original owner’s manuals and window sticker. A genuine certificate of participation as the official parade car during the 1996 Michigan International Speedway Grand Prix is signed by several illustrious Grand Prix drivers and is VIN matched to the SL500. Along with that certification are several stickers from the event and a hat. The removable hardtop painted in Imperial Red is supplied with the sale and has been repaired with a new headliner. A clean Carfax report shows no history of accident or damages and a clean title from Montana is ensured.

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