In perfect condition after a stunning restoration, it was awarded the highest honors : perfect with 100 points and Best of Show at the 2012 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, Restoration of the Year at the 2012 International Historic Motoring Awards and First in Class at the 2013 Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este.
This car is now estimated € 6.5M for sale by RM Sotheby's successor to RM Auctions on May 27 at Villa Erba, lot 144.
I discussed it as follows before the 2013 sale :
In the history of industry, the merger in 1926 of DMG (Daimler) and Benz is an exemplary case. Their product lines took benefit from the quality of their manufacturing but the German crisis could lead them to bankruptcy. Their combination, including the creation of a single Mercedes-Benz brand for the group, provided the new company with the critical size needed for a restart.
The ambition of Daimler Benz no longer had limits. Their high end models, S for sport and SSK for racing, bodied by the best craftsmen, could rightly appeal an international clientele. The Mercedes-Benz Type S is the successor to the Mercedes Model K.
Made in 1928 and sole survivor from three built with a low windshield, a Mercedes-Benz 680 S coachworked by Saoutchik as a Torpedo roadster is a great example of the perfection and modernism that could be achieved at that time.
Its mechanics are German but the elegance of its body is French. It is an early masterpiece by Jacques Saoutchik, a former cabinetmaker inspired by the Parisian Art Déco who knew to combine style and innovation. Made on order for an American businessman who failed to take it after a reversal of fortunes, it was exhibited at the New York Auto Salon in 1929.