As a worthy successor to the ‘Grosser’ Mercedes-Benz 770, the all-new 600 sedan debuted at the Frankfurt Auto Show in 1963. The 1963–1981 Mercedes-Benz 600 is the only ‘cost-no-object’ production Mercedes ever built. The 600’s specially designed, engine-driven hydraulic system controls the windows, the front and rear power seats, the fresh-air ventilation system, door closure, trunk closure, the sunroof, and suspension damping. It runs on mineral oil and operates at a nominal 3200 psi. It was dreamed up as a way to provide the car with absolutely silent accessory operation, and it is, in a word, amazing.
The 600’s three-pointed-star hood ornament, together with trunk badge is roughly 20 percent bigger than the hood ornament fitted to other Mercedes-Benz cars of the same era. Blame the car’s massive scale, the importance of proportion in good design, and a bunch of absurdly anal-retentive Germans.
A vacuum system locks all four doors, while the hydraulic system helps draw them closed so you don’t have to slam them. There’s a three-way switch on the steering column that lets you vary pressure in the hydraulic-suspension dampers. The hydraulic spares kit in the trunk contains small brass spacers; they’re to be used to keep the power seats from collapsing if the hydraulic system fails. The kit also contains three hydraulic blocks, three line connections, a set of hydraulic line plugs and clips, four wood wedges to insert in the window channels to keep the windows up, a spare hydraulic flex line, an instruction booklet, and an oil container.
The car was ordered originally by H.J. Van Heist & Zonen, a Dutch industrial family from a Cologne based dealer.
Mercedes 600 RHD
6,332 cc V8
273 RHD (2,677 total)
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