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2012 ATS
1956 De Ville

Mercedes W111/112 Cabrio/Coupe

Displacement (bore * stroke)
Compression ratio
Engine controlOHC (Duplex chain)
Mixture formation
Drive trainFront engine, rear drive
Wheelbase2750 mm
Front suspensionDouble wishbone
Rear suspensionJoint swing axle, hydraulic level regulation
Brakes f/r
DesignPaul Bracq
Length4.880 mm
Width1.845 mm
Luggage compartment530/450* litres
Tank capacity
Kerb weight
Manufactured1961 - 1967
Top speed
Purchase price

For far more than one and a half times the price because of the many manual labour, one got little more width and the full length of the saloon car. Although it was 'only' ennobling handwork, because the car ran off the assembly line together with the saloon car in Sindelfingen. A giant cabriolet, more to sail along than to speed. In addition, the proverbial Swabian safety (Figure 3 above), except one went too far and landed headfirst. Although the roof rails at the Coupé were more stable than they looked. Elegant was the car, as if from a distant time. Elegant was the car, especially if it came along with the continuous vertical headlights of the domestic series. The headlights for export you see in the picture 7 above. It lost the tailfins (pardon 'Peilstege'), but this was no reason to mourn. Soon the saloon car (picture below) should get the more elegant rear.

One year after launch came the automatic transmission. It has not yet the torque converter, which anyway came relatively late at Mercedes, but a hydraulic clutch. Thus, the automatic transmission needed as many gears as the manual transmission. Those who were not accustomed and drove with a clumsy foot on the accelerator, felt the operation of the converter as rough.

Let us enthuse about processing. Already the fabric roof was a masterpiece that had no equal in terms of fit and insulation. Inside was particularly striking besides the leather the wood coating on the dashboard in the early versions (pictures below). However, it has proven over time as something sensitive to light. In addition to the well-being, the security was not neglected with the stable passenger cell and crumple zones, for 1961 quite early.

The first series-produced Mercedes with disc brakes

Rarely a convertible was closed and open so equal good-looking as this. Basically, it was a car detached from the saloon car, although the chassis dimensions were identical. Even the radiator grille was less steep in the wind. Overall, the front was identical only at first, fleeting glance. The slightly cheaper coupé also had a well-balanced proportion of central structure and overhang. Also contributed to the less wide wraparound windscreen and the further wraparound rear window.

Certain ideas from the prototype phase have been spared to us. This included a front with wide radiator grille and nevertheless vertical headlights and the front of that time with the bulky rear of the limousine. The radiator grille of the saloon car had remained, however, placed a little deeper. Ultimately, despite the same basic dimensions no external sheet metal part of the limousine had been taken. 07/15