Nazi Parade Cars headed to Russia
Hitler’s armored 770K to be sold
Germany’s Der Spiegel online has revealed plans for six of the Nazi Party’s parade Mercedes 770s to be sold as a package to a Russian investor. Included in the deal is an armor-plated 1935 Mercedes 770A Kompressor Cabriolet believed to have been used to shuttle AdolfÂ Hitler through throngs of adoring Germans leading up to and during WW2.
This deal, brokered by German classic car dealer Michael Frohlich, is said to we worth well north of $15m, with the Hitler limousine expected to bring over $6m alone. Connecting the car to Hitler required careful study of historical photographs and revealed the 770 carrying number plate: 1A 148461 was clearly shown in photographs with Hitler aboard. Further evidence of the Fuhrer’s connection was provided by a log book noting the car being delivered to the “Fuhrer and Reich Chancellor.”
Establishing the Hitler connection to any 770 has been murky business over the years. In 1973, a 770K was erroneously represented to have been the parade limousine of Adolf Hitler and was sold at action for $153k, a record auction price for an automobile at the time.
Referring to the occasional inhabitant of 770K with plate #1A 148461 as “that shit Hitler,” Frohlich remarked that brokering this infamous 770 disgusts him and was certainly one of his more unusual transactions. Historically, cars with Nazi connections are traded quietly and are rarely shown in public due to the understandably strong emotions they elicit. Some of Frohlich’s other sales have included John Lennon’s Mercedes 600 and Charlie Chaplin’s Bentley S3.
Setting the Nazi connection aside for a moment, we must recognize the Mercedes 770 as the pinnacle of prewar automobile technology (particularly the series 2 cars constructed from 1938-1943) and extravagance. Constructed in two series from 1930-1943, the cars were favored by heads of state, some more notorious than others.
That the most well known examples of such a grand series of Mercedes automobiles are connected with this dark era of history has undoubtedly pained Mercedes-Benz for decades. For some, however, they are eminently collectible and sell for significant price multiples of similar 770s lacking the grim historical connection.
When first contacted by Der Spiegel to comment on this deal, I wondered whether this wealthy Russian had the courage to crush the Hitler car to further extinguish the memories of this bleak, forgettable era. After a moment’s consideration I realized that would be an unnecessary loss of an example of one of Mercedes’ finest series of motorcars. Such is the conundrum of any collectible connected to the Nazi era. We will celebrate the glorious 770 series soon with a proper article and no mention of any of the car’s ignominious owners.
Visit our pre-war Mercedes-Benz Video section.
Visit our pre-war Mercedes-Benz Community.
Roy Spencer, editor MercedesHeritage.com
Photography from Der Spiegel and AFP Photo Files
Please comment on this article below.