Mercedes Benz cars have an aura of indestructibility about them, especially the older, heavier models. With proper care, their engines will keep going and going, until one day you get tired of driving the car. Then you can sell it, or, in some cases, retire it to a barn. Now, we are not sure how these “barn finds” are actually discovered, but we imagine some guy (who in our minds wears a cheap suit) driving around the country, stopping in at remote farms, then asking if it just so happens they have a car parked in the barn.
Something like this:
Car treasure hunter: “Hello, ma’am, I notice you have a lovely barn over there.”
Farmer’s wife: “What are you selling, fella?”
Car treasure hunter: “Nothing, ma’am, just canvassing the farms in the area for old cars left in barns.”
Farmer’s wife: “That’s a bit odd, isn’t it?”
Car treasure hunter: “You’d be surprised how many cars are found this way.”
Farmer’s wife: “Do you want some lemonade?”
Car treasure hunter: “No, ma’am, thank you kindly. Do you mind if I have a peek inside your barn?”
Farmer’s wife (defensively): “There are only chickens in there, now get off my property! I am counting to ten, then getting my shotgun!”
Or something like that. But occasionally, honest-to-God barn-finds are, well, found, and sometimes they end up on eBay.
Today’s listing is one of those rare Mercedes barn-finds, this one a Vintage 1960 Mercedes 190D diesel Stationwagon ‘Karosserie’:
This is a very unusual model car, in that the front of the car looks like a regular (and more common) Mercedes 190 sedan (pictured to the right) but the body of the car is that of a station wagon. This specialized enhancement was somewhat common back then, and done, for the most part, by Binz Karosserie (Coachbuilders).
But back to this true barn find. The seller relates the story:
“This rather rare vintage 1960 Mercedes Benz 190D diesel station wagon is a literal barn find. I had to help the owner remove about 4 inches of dirt that from in front of the old barn doors to get them open so we could pull the car out! Here is the story of this car: In 1960 James Battle, Captain USMC brought this car back to Idaho with him from Germany where he had special ordered the car while in military service in Germany.
Mercedes did not build thier own station wagon for the 190 series cars back in those days, but had Binz Karosserie build the wagon part of the car for them, it has serial number 1569 from that company. In 1966 the 2nd owner bought the car, and drove it until 1977 when it was last licensed. His wife died that year, and for sentimental reasons he then put the car into the dairy milking parlor barn on the family farm where it has sat until yesterday when I bought the car from him.”
The seller goes on to say the car has some surface rust, but no deep-seated “cancer rust.” And it looks to be in pretty good shape, a worthwhile project for someone who loves the challenge. Of course, you could also use the car for parts, but it seems a shame to take this one apart, as it has such an interesting story and pedigree.
Good luck on the bidding!