by on July 11, 2013 in Latest News


Alan Wilder's Mercedes

A unique opportunity to purchase Alan Wilder’s Mercedes sports car has arisen. Alan has decided to sell his 300SL convertible (bought when he was still a member of Depeche Mode) even though the mileage is low and the condition is beautiful.

He says…“I find that I don’t use the car enough these days due to having a family and the space requirements that imposes. I bought the Merc back in 1991 when it was first released and had to remain on a waiting list for 6 months such was the excitement and demand for the (then) cutting edge model. I have looked after her meticulously over the years and just cannot stand to see her sitting in my garage not being used. The car has only ever been under my ownership, has a full service history, has never been in an accident and has performed immaculately since day one. The bodywork is in extremely good condition for the age, as is the interior with the soft top (which was replaced more recently). It also has a hard top, an enhanced audio system with subwoofer and various other extras.”

In fact, we can reveal that this is the very car from which Alan witnessed the plane crash which inspired ‘Black Box’ from Recoil’s ‘Liquid’ album (full story below). It also featured in the promotional photos for the ‘subHuman’ album campaign, taken by Paul Heartfield. “I shall be sad to see it go but, in the spirit of simplifying my life, I’m ready to pass it on to somebody who will really appreciate and look after it. Along with its career connections, that is why it is being advertised here at the Recoil outlets, rather than at any old car exchange site. I’d love for a fan to get the first chance to own it.”



Full details  :

Manufacturer : MERCEDES
Model : 300SL-24V AUTO
Type : Sports / Convertible (Automatic soft top & removable hard top)
Transmission : 5 speed Automatic
Colour : ‘Blue black’ – metallic paint (in reality, charcoal black with dark grey bumpers, as opposed to jet black)
Year : 1991
Mileage : 72,824
Condition : Very good generally. Bodywork very good (one or two minor marks & scratches), minor scuffs on bumper areas and wing mirror. Alloy on wheels has some mottling. Leather interior in very good condition, as is the trim and headlining.
Doors : 2
Seats : 2 (plus two extra small rear seats)
Drive Side : Right-hand drive
Engine Size : 6 cylinder – 2960cc
Exterior : 8-hole Alloy Wheels
Fuel : Petrol, unleaded (tank capacity – 80 litres)
Interior / Comfort Options : ABS brakes, ASR (Auto skid control), ADS (Adaptive damping system), Alarm, Air Conditioning, Black Leather upholstery, Memory drivers seat, Power-assisted steering, Electrically – operated seats, Electric windows, Auto roll bar, Rear leather extra seats, Infra-red remote central locking, Fire extinguisher, Tinted glass, Walnut facia.
In-Car Audio : Blaupunkt Radio/CD player, Aux out for iPod, 6 x integrated speakers, Blaupunkt Sub-bass extra unit, Steering wheel audio remote control.
Registration Date : 01/08/1991
Registration No : J616 CUC
MOT Expiry : 24/06/2014
Road Tax : SORN at present (declared ‘off road’), can be taxed as required.
Service History : Complete historic servicing documents & all M.O.T. certificates since 1994
V5 Reg. Document : Present
Modern / Classic : CLASSIC


Please note, we are not quoting a price for the Mercedes but welcome proper offers for this very special & collectible classic car. Only serious enquiries please. 

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According to Wilder, ‘Liquid’s theme was inspired by a real-life confrontation with death in 1994 when, while on holiday, the musician witnessed an RAF military plane crash into a hillside near Lochearnhead in Scotland. Wilder was showered with debris which scattered across the A85 trunk road after the plane plumetted some 200 yards away from his open-topped car. The impact left a 20-yard crater near the road.
Recalls Wilder…“As I approached a sharp bend in the road, the sound of the Tornado appeared behind me, and as I looked up, the underside of the aircraft was no more than 50 feet above my head. To my astonishment, the plane crashed beside the road into the glen. Apparently it had been travelling at approximately 400 miles per hour. As I swerved off the road into a farm track, I heard the sound of the impact and witnessed an enormous explosion from which the smoke and debris almost engulfed me. Another witness ran to call the police as I drove around the bend towards the site. At the same time, particles of carbon etc., began to rain down onto the open top car. Beyond the bend, parts of the dead airmens’ bodies were clearly visible in the road (i.e. parts of a seat belt with guts attached, lumps of gore and so on), a parachute, burning shrapnel and a strong, sweet smell of fuel. After the police arrived, I decided to leave the scene as many cars had arrived and there was nothing further to do. It was only at this point I realized what an incredible escape I’d had. I would surely have been killed or, worse, severely maimed, had I been 10 seconds further into my journey.” 
The MOD later named the dead airmen as 33-year-old navigator Patrick Harrison and Pilot Flight Lieutenant Peter Mosley, 31. They had been on a routine training flight from RAF Norfolk when the accident happened. No doubt the tragedy left an impression on Wilder and prompted him to write the music for the album’s lead track ‘Black Box’. “With the event so strong in my mind, I thought that the LP could unfold with a series of stories accounting for the pilot’s flashing memories coming back to him in his last moments. The most surreal element of the disaster was that it happened on such a fantastic day – just straight after this air crash the birds were singing and the sun was still shining as if nothing had happened.” 
The Shunt staff

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