Monterey | Lot 103
1950 Mercedes-Benz 170 S Cabriolet A
The Paul Andrews Estate Collection
$257,600 USD | Sold
| Monterey, California
12 August 2021
- An unusually handsome body style in well-presented condition
- Accompanied by fitted luggage
- A wonderful counterpoint to one’s 300 S or Sc
Often dubbed “the original S-Class,” Mercedes-Benz’s 170 S represented the peak of achievable luxury in early postwar Germany. While it may have lacked the great size and impressive luxury of today’s S-Class models, it set the path in that direction with very comfortable interior fitments and in being both sporty and easy to drive. Its specifications including competition-inspired double A-arm and coil-spring front suspension, as well as an engine boosted to 6.5:1 compression, for 52 brake horsepower, and a four-speed manual gearbox with synchromesh in all four gears.
Most impressively, the 170 S was a beautiful automobile. Its front-end styling reflected a nod to prewar design, with a tall vertical grille shell and freestanding headlights, but the bodywork was otherwise extremely modern. In fact, from the firewall back, the 170 S strongly resembled one of the new 300 sedans, in scaled-down form, and the Cabriolet A model bore a strong resemblance to the 300 S Cabriolet that would soon arrive. No wonder, then, that modern Mercedes-Benz enthusiasts often select a 170 S as a “little sibling” to the 300 in the garage—or that Paul Andrews, a man who loved Mercedes-Benz in all its variations, would want one for himself.
The Andrews 170 S Cabriolet A is a more recent acquisition for the collection, having been purchased from an owner in Germany. While there is no affirming documentation on file, a previous dealer ad indicates original delivery to Koblenz, Germany, with subsequent ownership in California in 2003.
Finished in a beautiful and classic black livery with red leather interior and black top, it is believed to have been restored within the last decade and remains very high-quality in its fit and finish. Inspection of the frame shows that the original chassis number and what appears to be the original chassis number tag, adjacent to it, are both clearly present; the engine number is obscured, however. The engine compartment itself is clean, tidy and well-presented, with the attention to detail that one comes to expect from an Andrews automobile.
Overall the only cosmetic flaws to be noted appear to be minor scratches on the chrome and paint from polishing in previous ownership, with the paint, interior, and top remaining in very good overall order aside from a blemish to the top on the passenger side. The wooden dashboard is especially beautiful, with clear, crisp gauges, including the beautifully designed and rather intricate face for the Becker radio. The interior of the trunk is properly finished and contains a handsome three-piece set of fitted luggage, ideal for highway travel in style. A correct full-size spare and car cover are also included.
Examples of the 170 S are seldom found in any condition in the United States, led alone one so nicely finished as that found here. It is offered as a wonderful counterpart to any collection of the finest products of the Star and the Laurel, be it alongside a 300 Sc, as this car was in the Andrews Collection, or standing on its own considerable merits.