The 280 SE Cabriolet was the last big Mercedes Convertible for many years. It was also the last of a long line of W111/ W112 series drop head models. This was a line that date all the way back to back to the early 1960s. The 280 SE is a much rarer than most people realize in fact. It comes as something of a shock to learn it was only built for two years and just a couple of thousand were produced. They were very expensive cars and much hand finishing was required in their production. This was the first car to get M-Bs new over head camshaft fuel injected V8, a flexible and smooth engine that made a perfect match with the standard automatic transmission. It made the cabriolet a fast 127 mph car, and thus one of the fastest open four seater, proper four seater around. Although dated by the turn of the 60s its lines still looked graceful and well balanced and featured a slightly lower, squatter grille than the earlier six cylinder versions.
Air suspension was a feature of the 300 SE Cabriolet, but this was rejected for the 3.5 liter 280 SE which had conventional springs for its suspension. So rare and desirable was the 280 SE that in real terms, as a mere second hand car, it has never really depreciated. This means the survival rate is good and prices remain strong.