The Țiriac Collection Museum has added two rare luxury limousines: the Mercedes 600 and 600 Pullman, both white with white leather upholstery.
Photo: Răzvan Loghin, Țiriac Collection
The Mercedes 600 (W100) was the expression of absolute luxury, being presented in 1963 at the Frankfurt Motor Show as the successor to the venerable W186/189 Adenauer 300. The model was produced for 18 years, until 1981, in only 2,677 examples, of which 2,190 were normal wheelbase units, 428 long-wheelbase Pullmans (304 four-door and 124 six-door), and 59 Landaulet versions.
The Țiriac collection was enriched by two examples: a 1966 Mercedes 600 and a 1969 Mercedes 600 Pullman six-door. Both models are pretty rare, being the only ones to offer the combination of white exterior and white leather upholstery inside.
Both models were restored in the workshop of Klaus Kienle, a well-known Mercedes model restorer in the restoration business since 1984. The standard Mercedes 600 has 100,499 km on board, while the 600 Pullman has 95,223 km driven.
On the Pullman version, the center doors have no exterior handles and can only be opened from the inside.
Mercedes has produced three versions of this model:
– the 3,200 mm short wheelbase version (some of them had glass separating the front and rear seats)
– the 3,900 mm long wheelbase version called Pullman, available with four or six doors. Some of these were converted into Landaulet versions.
6.3 liter V8 engine with 250 ps (247 hp) and 500 Nm
The Mercedes 600 was a big and heavy car and Mercedes decided to use a bigger engine. So, instead of the 3-liter 6-cylinder M189 engine, a 6.3-liter M100 V8 with a single overhead camshaft and Bosch multipoint injection was fitted, which transmitted power to the rear wheels via a 4-speed automatic gearbox. The engine developed 250 ps (247 hp) and a generous 500 Nm of torque from 2,800 rpm.
Air suspension standard
The 600 was a true technological showcase of its time, featuring a highly complex hydraulic system powered by a 2,200 psi pump that operated the windows, hatch, and trunk lid and even closed the doors automatically.
In addition, the Mercedes 600 had air suspension on all wheels, and the rear suspension maintained the ground clearance constant regardless of load. With front and rear stabilizer bars, a double-wishbone front axle, and a low-pivot swing axle rear axle, the Mercedes 600 had a safe road-holding, and recirculating ball steering was precise.
The car had no onboard electronics, just a rudimentary computer that adjusted the air conditioning to the desired temperature.
The magazine “auto motor und sport” wrote in 1964 that “the Mercedes 600 is the most interesting, the most advanced and the best car that has ever existed”.
Impressive list of owners
Mercedes 600 owners have included businessmen, actors, singers, TV stars such as Jay Leno, Elvis Presley, Eric Clapton, Jack Nicholson, Jeremy Clarkson, Elizabeth Taylor, and Rowan Atkinson, as well as kings and heads of state such as Thailand’s King Bhumibol, Deng Xiaoping, Ferdinand Marcos (he owned four examples, including a Landaulet), former Ugandan dictator Idi Amin, former President of the Republic of Korea, and former President of the Republic of Korea; edent of Egypt Hosni Mubarak, North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un, former Chinese leader Mao Zedong, former Communist dictator of Romania Nicolae Ceaușescu, Silvio Berlusconi, former Bulgarian president Todor Jivkov or Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev.
When it was launched in 1964, the Mercedes 600 cost DM 56,500 in Germany and the 600 Pullman DM 63,500. In the U.S., the models have been available since 1965 at $22,000 for the 600 and $24,000 for the Pullman.