(Not The Actual Vin Number)
1935 Mercedes-Benz 500K Cabriolet A
Authentic inside and out, this 500K boasts of matching numbers and is perhaps one of the finest examples of the 11 remaining Cabriolet As. One of the most desirable of the pre-war Mercedes-Benz body styles, this 500K Cabriolet A represents the very definition of luxury, style and elegance. When Mercedes-Benz introduced its 500K at the Berlin Motor Show in 1934 it was very much charting the future of automobiles. Besides the Kompressor helping to produce some 160 hp, the car would also incorporate external exhausts and a frame that sported fully independent suspension. But Mercedes-Benz also initiated something else with its 'Sindelfingen' moniker. Throughout much of the first half of the 20th century many of the exclusive chassis offered to the public would come with custom-built coach bodies built by outside coachbuilders. Sindelfingen would certainly give the appearance of being an outside coachbuilder but was, in fact, Mercedes' own in-house coachbuilding element. This would, in many ways, help to foster car companies with their own in-house design firms and builders and would place a much greater emphasis within the factory itself to design and build its own special bodies. Sindelfingen would work because it offered a rather extensive catalog of potential body styles for each of its more select models. And, amongst the coachbodies made available for the 500K chassis, one of the more privileged would be the Cabriolet A designed and built by Sindelfingen. Amongst the total of 342 units that would be produced over the course of two years just 33 examples would be fitted with Cabriolet A body-styling.
One of those 33 would be chassis 105379. Baron Silfverschiold of Gasevadholm, Sweden would be immediately smitten by the 500K and would place an order for his own in November of 1934. The Baron would specify his 500K to be complete with left-hand-drive, gray paint and a blood-red pigskin leather interior. The car would be finally completed toward the end of April 1935 and would be thereafter delivered to the Baron who would then move and have the car re-registered to his estate, the Castle Koberg in Vastergotland. The 500K Cabriolet A had certainly come home. 105379 would remain with the Baron throughout World War II but would eventually be parked in 1948 when it suffered a tire puncture. While a seemingly straight-forward issue to rectify, the rear wheel nut would be incorrectly threaded and would lead to the car being unused for another couple of years. Then, in September of 1950, Charles-Emile von Oelrich would purchase the car from the Baron and would have the car repaired. Being restored to use, Herr Von Oelrich would immediately take the car on several long-distance outings. Throughout the 1950s, the Cabriolet A would change hands a number of times and would even be owned a short period of time by the music director Birger Ludvigsson. Allan Karlsson would then come to own the car and would remark it's only flaw was the fact that it attracted a large crowd everywhere it went. Gosta Westerberg would come to own the car and would be determined to have it restored. The restoration work would begin in 1962 and would be completed by July of 1963. Soon thereafter the car would again change hands. This time, well-known collector Sven Harnstrom would come to own the car and would enter it in a number of various club meetings over the course of his nearly decade long ownership. When the car was sold to Svante Rosen, the car would continue to enter various collector car events. All throughout this time the 500K would remain in Sweden. However, in 1983 would leave its adopted homeland and would come to be part of a collection in West Germany. In the late 1980s, at the owner's request, Rolf Bunte would restore the Cabriolet A. Bunte would work tirelessly not just to restore the car, but to make sure everything functioned as intended and factory correct. This effort would end up setting a benchmark for the future. Such a beautifully-restored car would not be easy to part with. Therefore, it wouldn't be until 2004 when the car would be sold again, this time to a resident of the Netherlands. Remaining a part of a very private collection, the 500K remained as if completely original. Because of the work of the restoration, and the regular maintenance and upkeep, recent work done on the car would consist of just a mechanical tuning and touch-ups here and there to restore it to near brand-new condition.