1986 Mercedes-Benz SL 5.6 liter from North America
Under-appreciated, reliable classic
Needed a new alternator and a catalytic converter.
This car must be the worlds #1 under appreciated car. It is built like a tank and utterly reliable, even after 25 years. I use this car as a daily driver, and have had no problems with it. The subtle rumble of the V8 is a source of joy, and it pulls strongly from low rpm. Mileage is around 18mpg, nothing to be proud of, but still better than most modern SUVs.
I use this car year round, in contrast to most owners who never need their hardtop. It really has a dual personality with the 2 tops. In the summer it's a great, breezy convertible with a dark and cozy canvas hood, and in the winter it's a quiet, brightly lit coupe. Despite its small size and especially its small trunk, I always found enough space in the car to store my gear away - I even went on bike trip throughout New England with a bike rack on the trunk. The SLs sheetmetal is so thick, it didn't leave any scratches. But be aware - despite its big engine, this is not a sports car. Yes, it can accelerate quickly if need be, but this car is a cruiser. With the top down, it makes you feel like you steer a Riva yacht, in a good way.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 25th January, 2011