Gulbenkian left this car to his Portuguese gardener when he passed away in 1972, and the new owner shipped to back to Portugal and kept it in storage for 30 years. The car changed hands a couple of times afterward, it is now in the ownership of Mr. Sáragga and will be sold by RM Sotheby’s in the Sáragga Collection sale in Portugal on 20-21 September.
Mercedes-Benz produced 2,677 examples of the 600 sedan during 1960s. The 293rd one produced in 1966 stands out from all with its unique customisations ordered by eccentric Armenian oil tycoon Nubar Gulbenkian.
Gulbenkian first inquired Mercedes-Benz about changing the 600 with an all-glass roof. While the automaker turned him down, he ordered a standard 600 through a French dealer with a fake name and had it sent to Parisian coach-builder Henry Chapron. His requests on modifications were both peculiar and personal. He got the glass roof he wanted for looking at the stars, and to entertain that the rear seat could turn into a double bed. Gulbenkian was a pipe smoker so pipe holders were incorporated into the back of the front seats, while a minibar was also added between the seats. Unlike other 600s, the interior was all covered with leather with no sight of wood lining.