1995 Mercedes-Benz SL500 (R129)


  • Superb colourway of Rubin Red with cream leather
  • V8 5.0-litre V8 automatic engine drives smoothly
  • Bodywork in good order for year
  • Hardtop and soft top options
  • Fully loaded with all the electric toys

The Appeal

The Mercedes-Benz SL-class is an iconic label for the German maker and can be traced all the way back to 1954. Meaning ‘Sport-Leicht’ in German – Sports Light – the model was initially marketed as a sports car, but gradually evolved into the mid-sized sports convertible that we’re all familiar with today.

The fourth-generation R129 model ran from 1989 until 2002, with the SL500 being fitted with a 315bhp 5.0-litre V8 that offered a winning combination of multi cylinder smoothness and proper grunt. Zero to 60 miles an hour takes a mere 6.5 seconds, with the top speed being electronically limited to 155mph. And all dispatched with silky smoothness, thanks to the four-speed automatic gearbox.

This 1995 model is not in the default silver/grey/black paintwork with black leather, but in the much funkier shade of Rubin Red matched with a cream leather interior. It’s a stunning combination. It’s only covered 86,404 miles and is owned by a Mercedes fan that has an identically coloured E220 convertible. 

The History and Paperwork

  • V5C present in current owner’s name
  • Owned since 2021
  • Supplied new by Rossetts of Eastbourne
  • MoT until 17 May 2024
  • Has only covered just over 1,000 miles a year in last 10 years
  • Full service history stamped in the Mercedes booklets
  • Main dealer serviced until 55,546 miles then independent specialists

First registered 30 October 1995 by Rossetts of Eastbourne, East Sussex, this SL500 was then serviced by Rossetts until 1999, when it had covered 32,724 miles. Tony Purslow Mercedes in Basingstoke then serviced it in April 2001 at 45,370 miles, with Cathedral Motor Company (another Mercedes dealer in Truro) carrying out the 2002 service at 55,546 miles. Combined Fleet Maintenance serviced it in 2004 at 65,857 miles, with the next service taking place at 80,046 miles in 2018. The most recent service was at independent Mercedes specialist George Fraser at 81,482 miles in September 2020.

The Interior

  • Original cream leather interior trim is in great condition
  • Electric memory front seats with no rips to bolsters
  • Slight patination to backrest bolster of driver’s seat is the only evidence of wear
  • Leather looks excellent throughout vehicle
  • Original airbag leather steering wheel is unmarked and feels tactile
  • Dash is uncracked and unmodified in good condition
  • Centre console wood effect trim is in good order
  • Slight wear on Mercedes branded leather gear knob
  • Sony MEX-N7300BD Bluetooth CD tuner fitted
  • Supplied with three key fobs

There can’t be many 1995 SL500s that have an interior this wear free and the owner points out that this is all original and hasn’t been restored – it’s clearly been well looked after. The leather front seats are large and comfortable without any trace of sagging and no obvious marks. Only a minor bit of patination on one edge of the driver’s backrest bolster is the only real evidence of use. The easily marked centre console trim is in good order and the whole interior is in excellent condition – way above average for a 28 year old car.

Nothing has been modified except for the addition of a modern CD tuner equipped with Bluetooth, the rest of the interior is just as Mercedes supplied it. All the electric controls seemed to work fine and the hard-top mechanism popped off easily, while the hydraulic soft top – and roll bar – both powered up smoothly and easily.

Overall the interior is a fabulous place to be that’s still very much in keeping with this premium sportscar.

The Exterior 

  • Rubin Red metallic paintwork presents well and is in good order
  • Only obvious mark on paintwork is 50-pence sized paint bubble on offside front wheelarch
  • Minor stonechips touched in on leading edge of bonnet
  • Electric roof works fine and operated smoothly
  • Comes with mesh windbreak
  • Roof fabric looks in good order but nearside seam of rear window needs restitching
  • Front offside indicator lens has minor crack in it, nearside lens is intact
  • Front headlights clear and uncracked with headlamp wash/wipe
  • Front fog lamp lenses look in good order
  • Both rear tail-lights in good condition
  • Monoblock genuine Mercedes AMG alloy wheels all in good condition
  • Front tyres are a Three-A (dated 2016) and a Bridgestone Potenza (dated 2019) in 225/40-18 size
  • Rear tyres are Maystorm 2 (dated 2016) in 255/35-18 size
  • Spare alloy wheel is a Dunlop Sport 2000 (dated 2015) in 225/55-16 size

With the benefit of hard-top and the convenience of a soft top, the SL500 is a car for all-year use and you’ll want to use this one all the time thanks to its amazing colour combination. The paintwork is in excellent condition and the wheelarches haven’t suffered the crinkling edges that some SLs suffer. Only a paint bubble on the offside front wheelarch and some stonechips on the leading edge of the bonnet detract – these could easily be rectified by a competent bodyshop. The rest of the paintwork is in good condition with the clearcoat being undamaged and gleaming brightly in the sun.

The AMG monoblock 18-inch alloy wheels give the car a purposeful look and it really does stand out in a sea of silver SLs.

The Mechanics 

  • Engine bay looks smart and all original
  • Powered by a 320bhp 5.0-litre V8 engine
  • Engine started up easily and drove well
  • Minor oil leak around cam cover on offside of engine
  • Four-speed automatic gearbox selected gears easily and felt fine

Driving to the photoshoot location and moving the car around for several hours in the hot sun did not trouble this SL and it drove fine and started easily without fuss. Naturally the 320bhp gives strong performance, while the smooth automatic changed gears smoothly and felt fine. The current owner says that it drives without issues.


This is an unusual colour for a SL500 that really suits the car well and is the perfect foil for the fantastic condition cream leather interior. With full service history stamped in the original Mercedes books and a recent MoT this is a stunning looking car to show.


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Vehicle specification
  • Year 1995
  • Make Mercedes
  • Model SL Class SL500
  • Colour Red
  • Odometer 86,404 Miles
  • Engine size 4973
Auction Details
  • Seller Type Private
  • Town Loscoe
  • Location Derbyshire
  • Country United Kingdom

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