C 107 and C 126 model series coupés successful on the market: 2017 was another exceptionally good year for classic Mercedes-Benz vehicles

November 2017

HAGI market research again observes highly positive growth in value of classic Mercedes-Benz vehicles. Over the past twelve months, the market researchers calculate that the Mercedes-Benz Classic Index (MBCI) has risen by 8.7 percent, a considerable hike in value under the current market conditions. The MBCI has been published since 2012 by Historic Automobile Group International (HAGI) with its offices in London, Great Britain.

Stuttgart.  Classic vehicles from Mercedes-Benz are both sought-after collectors' items and objects of value. The same is true also in 2017. The Mercedes-Benz Classic Index, which is similar to a stock market index, describes the market performance by monitoring the results of the global trade in classic Mercedes-Benz models. According to the latest HAGI report, the market prices of classic Mercedes-Benz vehicles have continued to show strong upward growth. With a considerable hike of more than 8.7 percent over the past twelve months, the figure is on a level with the average long-term growth in the value of Mercedes-Benz classic cars (+8.8%).

"The prices for good classic Mercedes-Benz vehicles, and thus the esteem in which they are held, are indeed continuing to post encouraging growth," confirms Patrik Gottwick, responsible at Mercedes-Benz Classic for the ALL TIME STARS vehicle trading platform. "The trend points continuously upwards."

A key requirement for high market prices and high esteem is vehicles that are in perfect condition. On account of their age, they have usually been restored – yet the restoration must have been carried out to the highest standards. Great importance is attached to the traceability of all work done, along with documentation of the previous condition. There is a special bonus for restoration using genuine parts in line with original Mercedes-Benz instructions, as happens at the Classic Centres in Fellbach near Stuttgart and in Irvine, California: a classic car in as-new condition, restored in accordance with the original specifications of the former manufacturer, will fetch a very high price on the market.

Having climbed to a new high of 206.5 index points in September 2017, the Mercedes-Benz Classic Index MBCI fell back again slightly in October in line with seasonal expectations (- 3.1% compared with the previous month). Even so, the performance for 2017 remains extremely positive: since the start of the year, the MBCI has recorded the highest growth in value measured by HAGI across all brands (+7.6%). Extrapolated to twelve months, the rise of the MBCI shows the previously mentioned hike of 8.7 percent.

Growth in value for four classic Mercedes-Benz models

HAGI maintains several Mercedes-Benz indexes. Younger collectors' models are grouped in the Mercedes-Benz Classic Index Emerging Classics (MBCI EC). For this index, the market researcher calculated a rise of 4.4 percent in October compared with the same month of the previous year. At approximately 9.8 percent, the increase over the last twelve months is even higher. A positive influence came in October from SLC models of the 107 series as well as from SEC models of the 126 series. According to the market observations of HAGI, a 500 SLC was sold for over 110,000 euros on the private market.

In September, two Mercedes-Benz models in particular fetched high prices on the market: the 190 SL (W 121) is currently trading at prices around 200,000 euros. This makes the roadster, manufactured between 1955 and 1963, currently one of the most sought-after classic cars. The market price has almost doubled over the past ten years. Since 2016, it has even enriched the field for the Mille Miglia: it came to light in 2015 that a 190 SL also took part in the original "1,000 miles" race in 1956. The French team of Michel Bianco / Jean Loup Pellecuer, start number 347, finished 121st back then, after a driving time of 16 hours, 6 minutes and 15 seconds.

HAGI has recorded a further rise in value for the Mercedes-Benz 280 SE 3.5 Cabriolet (W 111): examples in top condition are fetching prices around 400,000 euros, while stand-out specimens are even clearly exceeding that mark. The luxurious four-seater cabriolet, built from 1969 until 1971, and its sister models, produced between 1965 and 1971, are firm favourites with collectors worldwide. Patrik Gottwick adds: "It is no exaggeration to say that these cabriolets achieved dream car status from the moment they rolled off the production line, a status they have never lost."

HAGI indexes established as international benchmarks

The HAGI indexes were launched in January 2009. They exist for various car brands and have established themselves as international benchmarks in the market for classic vehicles. Inaugurated in 2012, the Mercedes-Benz Classic Index (MBCI) launched at a value of 100 British pounds on 31 December 2011. By October 2017 it had risen to over 200 points. The MBCI currently records the growth in value of 44 classic cars of the brand, 23 of which are estimated by HAGI to be among the historically most important vehicles of all.

Established in 2007, the Historic Automobile Group International (HAGI) is an independent research institute for investments and is specialised in rare classic automobiles. The HAGI Top Index is regularly used as a benchmark by media such as the Financial Times, New York Times and the German daily "Die Welt". The goal is to bring transparency to the market and to enable market participants to make sound decisions based on data. HAGI operates a database covering over 100,000 actual transactions. Entries begin on the date a vehicle is produced and are updated on a daily basis. The data come mainly from four sources: private contacts, brand specialists, dealers and auction results.

  • 2007M726
    Mercedes-Benz 190 SL (W 121, 1955 - 1963).
  • 1999DIG21
    Mercedes-Benz 500 SLC (C 107, 1971 - 1981).
  • 81F150
    Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupé (C 126, 1981 bis 1991).
  • 10C175_007
    Mercedes-Benz 280 SE 3.5 Cabriolet (W 111, 1969 - 1971).