Era of Excess: Mercedes-Benz 500SEC Koenig Special

Features, Lifestyle I By Avants Magazine I July 27, 2023
500SEC Koenig Special Beverly Hills

Every decade has certain automobiles that represent the audaciousness of the era in which they were made. For 1980s Los Angeles, the vibe was driven by celebrities with big hair, loud neon clothes, loud music, lavish houses, wild parties, and vast amounts of cash to burn. When it came to cars, whips like Shant Meshefedjian’s 1985 Mercedes-Benz 500SEC Koenig Special really captured the bold, outlandish style of that gnarly decade.

500SEC Koenig Special

Shant runs Marina West Autobody in Los Angeles, California. His main business handles everyday collision needs, as well as bespoke rides and restorations. Tucked inside Marina West lies Shant’s passion project, CMS Motorsports, which specializes in restoring rare Mercedes tuner cars.

Born in Syria of Armenian descent, Shant moved to L.A. at the age of three, and as he grew up, the big body Mercedes always caught his eye. “I’d see these big Benzes cruising on Rodeo Drive…those cars really spoke to me. They had these long bodies or bright chrome trim and bumpers. I’d always watch to see who would step out, because I knew whoever it was, was a big deal.

500SEC Koenig Special

In the ‘80s, the L.A. party scene was in full swing, setting the glitz and glamor bar high for those who really wanted to stand out. Taking a large draw from his cigar, Shant recalls the era: “With a lot of questionable money floating around, people spent it on customizing their rides. Tuners at the time would start with the flagship models, which cost $200,000, then they’d put another $200,000 into chopping the top or cutting the roof into a gullwing. Even today it is absolutely mind-blowing: twin-turbo Ferraris, supercharged racing engines in street cars, etc.” He knew at the time that these are the cars he wanted to spend time with.  Enter the 500SEC Koenig Special.

Read more via AVANTS here.

500SEC Koenig Special Beverly Willshire

500SEC Koenig Special

500SEC Koenig Special

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