2001 Mercedes-Benz S500L (Ex David Beckham car)

Photos provided by the vendor


  • Previously owned by David Beckham
  • Very high specification
  • 5.0-litre V8 drivetrain
  • Recent €4,000 spend on air suspension refurbishment

The Appeal

There are luxury cars, and then there’s the Mercedes S-Class, which has stood in a class of its own for decades. Replete with numerous luxuries and many technological advances, each iteration has pushed the envelope of what we expect from luxury motoring. In fact, reviews at the time were united in their praise.

This is a W220 S500L, the long-wheelbase version of the range-topping S500. With all the gadgets you could want, a barrel-chested V8 powertrain and a raft of safety features, it really is an awful lot of car for the money. Add in to that the fact that this particular car was once the private wheels of world-renowned footballer David Beckham, and you have a very special car indeed. 

The History and Paperwork

  • First registered June 2001
  • Private registration (B9DVB) included with sale
  • Purchased by David Beckham in 2001
  • Framed log book to confirm provenance
  • 9 owners
  • Part main dealer / specialist service history
  • Original owner’s manuals included
  • Previous MOT certificates included
  • Private number plate authorisation paperwork from DVLA
  • A number of maintenance / servicing receipts

The Interior

  • Black Nappa leather upholstery
  • Rear compartment TV
  • Electric memory seats front and back
  • Electric sunroof
  • Powered windows and mirrors
  • Cruise control
  • Parking sensors

One of the choice upgrades that Mercedes made to this iteration of the S-Class was to specify Nappa leather upholstery, which is beautifully soft and high quality. Here the leather of the seats and door cards is in very good condition for a 21 year-old vehicle, with no evidence we could see of significant wear, rips or damage.

The dashboard, centre console, steering wheel and door cards feature elegant walnut veneer trim, which all looks to be in fine condition, with a deep colour and rich shine. All of the instrumentation and switchgear is complete and in good working condition, with some light scratches and wear, but certainly no more than you’d expect from a quality car of this age.

We’re told by the vendor that all of the car’s systems and features operate perfectly well, other than the air-conditioning which currently is non-functional. The carpets are said to be in “excellent” condition, and in the boot there is the original toolkit and a full-size spare wheel.

One of the advantages of the ‘L’ is the extra legroom, adding a real sense of luxury to what was already a very commodious vehicle. Whether you’re driving or being driven, it’s a fantastic place to spend time. 

The Exterior 

  • Recently retouched black paintwork
  • 5-spoke AMG alloy wheels
  • Xenon headlamps

For such a large vehicle (more than 5m long and 1.8m wide), the S500L is a handsome car, with good proportions and some attractive trim and detailing. It’s certainly a much cleaner and less-fussy design than most modern cars.

We’re informed by the vendor that some recent light paintwork refinishing has been carried out to restore the paintwork to its former glory and eliminate some age-related fading. As a result, the paintwork looks to be in good condition. Naturally, there are some signs of age, minor blemishes and scuffs. But overall the exterior finish is definitely above average for a car of this age and mileage.

The external trim, glass, lights and brightwork elements are all present, correct and in good condition. There’s certainly no damage or cracking we could see. The one thing we did notice is that the headlights could probably do with a polish to bring the plastic back to its best, but other than that everything looks to be in good order.

Looking at the body panels, everything appears to be straight, undamaged and with no signs of corrosion. One modification the owner has made is to add some aftermarket, body-coloured wheel arch trims. These give the car a slightly beefier stance, and the owner assures us that there is no rust present underneath them.

The chunky 5-spoke AMG alloys suit the car well and give a purposeful stance. They’re presented in good condition, with no notable damage, and the tyres wear good tread.

The Mechanics 

  • 4,966cc naturally-aspirated V8
  • 5-speed automatic transmission
  • Airmatic electronically controlled air suspension
  • Active damping system
  • Active cylinder control
  • Recent full service

Under the bonnet, the engine bay looks clean and tidy, with no evidence of leaks or overheating. That mighty 5-litre V8 M113 E50 engine pushes a plentiful 302bhp to the rear wheels, more than enough to hurry this limousine along when necessary. Twinned with Mercedes super-smooth 5-speed automatic transmission, it offers the king of effortless luxury that the S-Class is famed for.

It also has many true technological advances that were real boundary-pushers at the time. Cylinder deactivation, active dampers with electronically controlled, speed-adjusted air suspension and curtain airbags were all innovative elements of the S500L’s design. With mighty vented discs front and back to keep everything under control, it makes this one of the all-time greats in Mercedes’ catalogue.

The vendor tells us that they have recently spent €4,000+ to have the air suspension refurbished, including new shocks, linkages and arms.

As a result, we’re told by the seller that the car drives very well, accelerating as expected and offering a quiet and smooth ride. As far as they are aware, there are no mechanical issues.


This is a golden opportunity to acquire one of the finest modern luxury saloons ever made. When you consider the maintenance work that has recently been undertaken on this car, together with the fine maintenance history and huge spec list, it makes for a fantastic purchase. Add in the unique provenance of the vehicle and it makes it a car you can buy with your heart and your head.

Whether you’re after something a bit posh with a spicy V8 for occasional use, or a genuine luxury car you can use and enjoy every day, this has to be on your radar. Whoever walks away with it will definitely have scored themselves a blinder…

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 2001
  • Make Mercedes
  • Model S500L
  • Colour Obsidian Black
  • Odometer 124,300 Miles
  • Engine size 4999
  • Town Longford
Auction Details
  • Seller Type Private
  • Location International
  • Country Ireland
Bidding history
10 bids from 5 bidders
  • JonnyE £8,400 15/09/22
  • morgan.•••• £8,300 15/09/22
  • JonnyE £8,100 15/09/22
  • morgan.•••• £8,000 15/09/22
  • JonnyE £7,600 15/09/22
  • Mike Mc•••• £7,500 15/09/22
  • JonnyE £5,900 15/09/22
  • morgan.•••• £5,800 14/09/22
  • kennedy•••• £5,500 14/09/22
  • Rdt0211 £5,000 08/09/22

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