1981 Mercedes 300SD

In 1981 Mercedes came out with a new body style. The 126 chassis was a more streamlined wind-tunnel design. At the time Richard owned German Auto Center and we were an independent garage. We sold Mercedes cars and had a complete repair facility. You can imagine the horror of the local authorized Mercedes dealer when we were the first place in Austin to have one of these newly designed cars. Several of their employees showed up while it was on our showroom floor to get their first hands on look at this car.

We bought the car in Seattle, Washington and I drove it the 3000 miles back to Austin. I met Richard in Amarillo where he was picking up my 1958 Delray from Don Moss' paint and body shop. It was very cold on the trip back and he did not have the benefit of a heater in the 58 Delray.

I took these pictures along the route home. Along the way I had a problem with the locking system on the car - the gas lid lock would not disengage when I stopped to fill up the first time. There was a Mercedes dealer nearby so I stopped there and they showed me how to reach into the side of the trunk and manually pull the lock back - unfortunately they didn't have parts to fix it (it was the first one they had seen) so the repair had to wait until I got home. Fortunately the problem was easily bypassed and that was the only problem I had. I did have a pretty good scare in the car going through Colorado. Although the weather was cold the roads had been clear all day and I was approaching a sharp curve to the left on the side of a mountain. The corner was in shade and melting ice had refrozen on the corner. When I began the turn I realized I was on ice and could envision myself flying off the road as there was only a small guard rail between me and the canyon. Fortunately the car held true in the turn and did not lose traction on the ice. Thank you Lord!