The 560 was premiered at the IAA in Frankfurt on September 1979. Its design differed from the remainder of the Mercedes fleet at that time, so some people did not appreciate the design right away. As is most always the case, the radical designs take some time to be welcomed. The intention of the design team, lead by Bruno Sacco, was to create a car that was sleeker, more aerodynamic, lighter and faster than the previous model. The application of lighter materials and alloys combined with thorough wind tunnel testing to reduce overall drag meant the car consumed about 10% less fuel than its predecessor and maximum speed was also increased. This is of course a great win for not only the earth, but for the driver, as they will be spending less on fuel. The 560 was initially offered as both short, designated SE and SD, and long, designated SEL and SDL, wheelbase sedans. However, in September 1981 the coupe, designated SEC, body style was introduced.
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During the car’s twelve-year production run between 1979 and 1991 the different body styles achieved a combined sales of an impressive 892,123 units, of which 818,063 were sedans. This made the 500 (W126 series) the most popular S-Class to date. The 500 replaced the 1970s generation W116, which included the flagship Mercedes-Benz. It therefore had to carry forward the self-leveling hydro pneumatic suspension. This came as an option on the 500, and standard on the 560 models. After the 1970s oil crisis, Mercedes-Benz made fuel efficiency a significant goal of the model, even in the large V8 engine models. A few upgrades and facelifts occurred over the years such as changes to the bumpers and side covers and alloys. Also, changes were made to the available collection of engine variants, which was very welcomed. Learn more about the Mercedes-Benz 560 and receive an instant auto shipping rate using our online quote calculator.