The Mercedes-Benz 220SE Cabriolet, part of the W111 family of models, debuted in 1961 as a full-size executive open-top model that replaced the W128 220SE which was still based on the antiquated ’Ponton’ design. The new model featured a more sharp-cornered design that has endured as one of Mercedes’ finest over the years.
The W111 series debuted in 1959 at the Frankfurt Auto Show where Mercedes-Benz unveiled the four-door sedan body style which quickly gained the ’Heckflosse’ nickname, which stands for ’Fintail’ in English. The nickname emerged thanks to the car’s stylized fins that rose at the rear of the car, a design cue aimed at the American clientele.
The Cabriolet version followed a couple of years later after the production cycle of the Ponton-based W128 Cabriolet ended. The two-door car had a soft top and exuded a sort of refined beauty that has become almost synonym with ’60s Mercedes-Benz models. The W111 is considered part of the S-Class lineage along with the deluxe W112 that featured bigger engines and more amenities onboard.