1939 Mercedes-Benz 540K

Cabriolet A by Sindelfingen
Not sold at a high bid of
Lot Number
Older restoration
Auction House
Chassis no. 408371. Two-tone red with beige cloth top over tan leather. 5,410/115-180hp supercharged inline eight, 5-speed, steeply raked vee windshield, set back radiator, chrome wire wheels, wide whitewalls, dual sidemounts, Bosch headlights, dip beam light, dual spotlights with mirrors, trafficators, chevron grille guard, fitted luggage.

Evaluation: Plain white instrument panel, older gauges, very good interior wood. Upholstery is lightly surface creased. Paint and chrome are very good. An older concours restoration by Mike Fennel in the early 1990s with an attractive and flamboyant livery and a provenance that is hard to match: James Melton, Otis Chandler, Axel Wars and General William Lyon. Pebble Beach Best of Show for the Chandlers in 1973 (when it was Green).

Bottom Line: Offered at the Tokyo Auction as an Exposition car in 1992, then by RM in its present guise at Amelia in 2016 where it was reported bid to $2.8 million without selling. It still shows the same 3835 miles that it did five years ago in 2016, and is still a rare, spectacular example of special Sindelfingen coachwork with unique features including the vee windshield and set back radiator. It deserves to find a new home, but won’t at the reported high bid here.

by Rick Carey
7 February 2021

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