Tech and facts


Sold/number built 1953- 62/559,369

Construction steel monocoque

Engine all-iron, sv 1767cc/ohc alloy-head 1897cc/all-iron 1897cc or 1988cc'four,’ iron-block, alloy-head ohc 2195cc'six’;

Solex carb/carbs or Bosch injection;

40bhp @ 4000rpm-115bhp @ 4800rpm;

75lb ft @ 2000rpm-152lb ft @ 4100rpm

Transmission all-synchromesh four-speed man, optional Hydrak auto clutch (219/220S), RWD

Suspension independent at front by wishbones, coils, telescopic dampers, a-r bar rear swing axles

Steering recirculating ball

Brakes drums

Length 14ft 81/2in-15ft 7in (4485-4750mm)

Width 5ft 81/2-91/3in (1740-1760mm)

Height 5ft (1530-1560mm)

Wheelbase 8ft 81/3in-9ft 1/3in (2650-2820mm)

Weight 2595-3241lb (1180-1470kg)

0-60mph 39-c14 secs

Top speed 69-103mph

Mpg 15-44

Price new £1793 (190 W121,1956)

Twin-carb ‘four’ or injected 'six’ offer decent performance


£143.10 for 30-year-old Londoner with full no-claims and a clean licence on a garaged 1957 220Sas a second car, value £25k, 5000 limited miles. Richardson Hosken: 01277 206911.




 Technically advanced, with alloy V6 engine givingupto 118bhp. Available as unitary saloon, coupe or convertible, it’s highly complex, but still feels remarkably modern to drive. Sold/no built 1950-’58/18,197 Mpg 18-30 0-60mph 20-12.3 secs Top speed 84-115mph Price new £3471 (B20 GT, ’55) Now £25-200,000


Plentiful wood and leather, and choice of lumbering four- or silky six-cylinder engines. As durable as a Mercedes with most parts significantly cheaper; an appealing option. Sold/no built 1949-’64/130,342 Mpg 17-30 0-60mph 26.5-15.4 secs Top speed 77-100mph Price new £1298 (60,1956) Now £2000-15,000


Our verdict

Find a well-maintained Ponton and you are almost guaranteed a reliable family friend with few weaknesses. Just beware neglected cars dressed up to look better than they are. Over- head-cam engines, especially twin-carb or injected sixes, perform well and cabriolets are increasingly sought after-there are still worth-while projects if you have the skills.


•             Exceptional build quality

•             Most models are remarkably usable

•             Last for ever if well maintained

•             Virtually all parts can be found


•             Spares can be expensive if rebuild required

•             Sidevalves and diesels are very slow



Technical data Mercedes W120, W121, W105, W180, W128 all Ponton series
220 S/SE
Engine configuration L4 petrol L4 petrol L4 petrol L4 diesel L4 diesel L6 petrol L6 petrol
Engine capacity (cmc) 1767 1897 1897 1767 1897 2195 2195
Maximum power (PS/rpm) 52/4000 65/4500 75/4600 40/3500 50/4000 85/4800 100/4800
Maximum torque (Nm/rpm) 112/1800 130/2200 138/2800 102/2000 110/2200 157/2400 170/3500
Unladen weight (kg) 1150 1165 1165 1200 1210 1300 1350
Consumption (l/100 km) 8,7 10,9 8,9 6,3 7,1 13,5 13,5
Maximum speed (km/h) 126 135 140 109 121 150 160
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