When you think of Mercedes-Benz R&D department, you're probably imagining a bunch of white-coated German engineers measuring screw threads with calipers and nodding to each other saying, "Yah, das ist gut." That's clearly not the case, according to this 'Mercedes Prototype' for sale in Taylors, SC. There's an R&D facility there?
This Craigslist ad doesn't say all that much, but what it does say is pretty amazing:
Prototype Mercedes, $8,000 or Best Offer, with Porsche chassis, Chevy 350 motor, Ford wiring. Racing seats, 5-point harrnesses. Was a Grand AM SCCA racecar, converted to street. Lift doors and engine cover. Local Only. No Paypal. Cash Only.
Okay, based on this, maybe he's referring to sports prototypes instead of an actual Mercedes production car prototype. Okay. But it's still, clearly a Mercedes, what with that "Porsche" chassis, Ram steering wheel. Chevy motor, and "Ford wiring." Benz has always insisted on using quality Ford wiring, and I think it was even a big selling point in their ads from the '80s. Didn't AMGs have a WIRED BY FORD badge on them?
Everything about this thing screams "quality." No, shrieks. From the way that teal fiberglass body sits right on that square-section-tubing chassis that's clearly made by Porsche, to the racing-spec rubber flame-design floormats (the flames mean they're fireproof, probably), to the special, Benz Advanced Design semi-opaque windshield. This partially-clear diffused-view windshield design was part of an experimental project to keep driver distraction to a minimum by not letting them see all that much out the window.
Of course, it was a huge success.
Also, that dog used for scale looks like one of those advanced racing dogs.
So, time to cram 400 $20s into a wet paper bag and get your ass over to the Lower Carolina to pick up this gem. And then please write a review of it for us!