Rides from the Readers: 1958 Mercedes-Benz 220S sedan
Hagerty readers and Hagerty Drivers Club members share their cherished collector and enthusiast vehicles with us via our contact email, firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re showcasing some of our favorite stories among these submissions. To have your car featured, send complete photography and your story of ownership to us at the above email.
Today’s featured car is a 1958 Mercedes-Benz 220S sedan. Identified by fans of the marque according to its chassis as a W180, the 220S was the middle trim of Mercedes’ mid-size luxury offering. The 220S slotted in between the 220A and the top-of-the-line, fuel-injected 220SE. The twin-carb 220S was available in coupe or sedan format, with the shorter-wheelbase coupes offering either hardtop or convertible options. Most popular, however, was the four-door sedan iteration, featured here.
This particular 220S sedan belongs to Charles Spiher, the car’s third owner, following a Texaco gas station owner and a Methodist minister. The color scheme is classy ’50s luxury: glossy black paint, mesh grille, and chrome trim for the exterior and red leather inside, complete with “enough wood to fund a South American lumberyard,” as Spiher writes. The quirk—or curse, depending on your point of view—of this particular 220S is its hydraulic automatic clutch system, an awkward evolution point in transmission history. However, for Spiher, the feature just adds to the driving experience and makes the car that much more his.
Does your classic have a finicky driving feature that you’ve taken pride in mastering? Let us know.