Grab this replica of the car that put AMG Mercedes on the map

This car practically started the AMG chapter in Mercedes' books

1y ago

Enthusiasts might see AMG as the Lamborghini derivative of Mercedes. It is madder, louder and comes with its own distinct style, separating itself from the usual Benz boys. For the unaware, AMG wasn’t present in Mercedes catalogues since its inception. And as seen in typical Hollywood movies, it needed a dark horse to make its impact felt. And AMG’s dark horse was, er, red - the 420hp Red Pig to be precise.

For car fanatics wishing to sample the Red Pig’s accolades now's your chance, a reproduced version is up for sale. It will go under the hammer at the upcoming RM Sotheby’s auction in February.

Starting life as a 1969 Mercedes 300 SEL 6.3, this replica was then restored to Red Pig specifications and livery by Benz specialists at Arthur Bechtel Classic Motors in Germany.

The Red Pig was the car that put AMG on the map and it all started out with a simple request. Back in the day, AMG operated independently as a Mercedes-specialist tuner shop. They made a name for themselves by turning regular Mercs into something more exhilarating. Soon a customer asked AMG to tune his Benz 300 SEL for racing.

AMG pounced on the opportunity to create not a looker but a monster lurking beneath a Merc Limo suit. Or that’s how the audience described it when they witnessed it for the first time at the 1971 Spa 24 Hours.

Boring the engine out to 6.8 litres, AMG was able to procure a higher power output of 420 horses for this modified racecar and lower its weight by swapping out the steel doors for aluminium versions. Couple that with other grip-inducing modifications like widening the track and fitting larger tyres and you are looking at a thoroughbred race car.

The Red Pig was driven by the duo of Clemens Schickentanz and Hans Heyer, who went on to beat everyone in their class. The race saw the car blast away from its competitors, securing second place in its very first race. Pundits claim the car would have won the day had it not been for the numerous fuel stops required by the thirsty 6.8-litre unit. One thing's for sure, anyone who thought the Red Pig was a joke of a race car was made to think again.

Laterally, AMG got massive recognition in the automotive market. It wasn’t long before even Mercedes took heed and started selling AMG products to its customers. In 1999 the German carmaker obtained controlling interests in AMG, acquiring complete ownership in 2005. And the rest, as they say, is history.

All’s well that end’s well is something the Red Pig can’t boast about itself. Post its career in racing, it was sold to an aircraft company. One of the fastest cars in the world at the time, was then used to test landing gear which were dropped through holes in the floor as the car covered ground at speed. Naturally, after a few stints, it was a wreck.

This particular replica was bought by a South Korean businessman called James Goo Kim. With the odometer showing less than 500 miles.

And if you're not lucky enough to have the cash to jet down to Paris and buy the car, you could always content yourself with this book that documents the complete history of the 300 SEL that underpinned the Red Pig.

How much do you think this Red Pig replica would go for?

Let me know in the comments below!

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Comments (2)

  • The car that started a historic partnership. Incredible machine.

      1 year ago
  • Hmmm, if it had at least of the scales of the real Dragon with the piece with the VIN, then it could be called as a restored car. Such thing happened in the wrecked Ferrari race cars and in result, the same car with the same chassis number exist for more than two. Those spectators at the time took the wrecked and maybe burnt left overs away and somehow someone got those and that someone was more than one. Okay, so it's a replica and so it's tricky. Okay, how about 300,000 in green bucks. BTW, during the late eighties to early nineties, when the older cars had to pass the getting strict year after year smog test in California, especially in the so-Cal, I used to see a big warehouse with the huge yellow sheet with the huge AMG logo on it and wondered what the hell is that. My uncle had a AMG 500SL in the late seventies and I knew what it is. Also some years back, I was visiting many German cities for business and one of the hotel was showing the AMG car at its lobby floor. The AMG must be in that city 'cause I've seen a lot of Mercs and other cars at the hotel lobby modified by the local shops. I remember that there was an Alpina was shown somewhere. So it seemed like that's the German style of showing the up and coming local she's cars. But I felt as something wrong with that big sign on the warehouse and my guessing was right. When I got closer, it was another line underneath the logo which rad as "The authorized Mercedes Benz smog center." Yes, at the time, Merc was using the AMG brand for the smog check passing work to be done at the AMG smog center. I felt as my blood gets boiling with what the Merc's board of directors have done with using the glorious AMG name and logo with it. At the time, I though Merc took over the AMG to use it as is and then throw it in the bin and hide it somewhere in their plant. I was furious. And I was getting more and more furious 'cause there were no rumor nor the smell of the AMG brand and car with the badge on it will hit the big market of States. There's a bookstore in Burbank, CA near Jay Leno's Big Dawg Garage with the name of Autobooks Aerobooks. Yes anything aviation and automobile related books and magazines are what they carry and you could see all sorts of "gearhead" guys with the suit, t-shirt and jeans wearing geeks and nerds sitting on the floor reading the books like in a library. I once saw a guy with the t-shirt with the Nash Healy printed on the front laying on the floor with pile of gooks which he hasn't bought nor having the idea for buying those. But the shop was in silence and always with the gear heads. When I went there one day, the entrance door was locked and there was a legal pad sticked on there telling that the fully restored Lockheed Constellation will be landing at the Burbank airport and until 17:00, the flaying lady will be parked in front of the hanger A3 and by entering the airport from such such gate on something street, you can park your car and see the beauty!!" which meant as the shop staff won't be back at least 17:00. It was a bookstore of the geeks, by the geeks and for the geeks. If there's a replica statue of sitting Lincoln in that store he might holding a wheel. It was that kinda a store with the best chili joint in the greater LA near by. That night I was chatting with the store manager about what I saw near the 5 Freeway in Orange County with this huge AMG smog center, and he said with shaking his head "I know that's pretty sad, isn't it?" And all the geeks in the shop joined the discussion.

    Okay, once again U$300,000.- Because even it is a ultra fine made replica, it's not the real deal but I know it's close to a real deal.

      1 year ago