There is a first-gen G-Class wearing a blue-white livery in the driveway. It is a clue of what hides inside the secret Mercedes-Benz Museum that is not open to public.
Danny Lucas opens the door to his car cave. Many know him as Danz Benz. And that says it all. Growing up looking at his father’s Mercedes, it didn’t take long before he became obsessed with the brand. Behind closed doors, he now keeps a jaw-dropping collection. “I wanted it to be the nearest thing to the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart outside Stuttgart. So I think we’ve achieved quite a remarkable result here,” he says. And no one can say otherwise. He build quite a three-pointed star kingdom in Kent, UK.
The first thing you see when you step in is a Benz Patent Motorwagen. It is a replica of the world’s first car that Carl Benz built in 1886. That’s where it all started. This particular replica spent years in a museum in Japan, before becoming the property of an American entrepreneur. He took it straight to Pebble Beach for the Concours d’Elegance. Sir Stirling Moss himself drove it at the event.
The car went to Stuttgart and, since last year, moved to Danny’s collection.
Danny started this whole secret museum in 2019. One of the first cars he set eyes on was a 1975 C107 Mercedes-Benz 450 SLC. It started its life being a press car and was eventually converted into a competition version for the 1976 Tour of Britain rally. And it turned out to be a major comeback for Mercedes. It was the first participation of the brand in a racing event after the 1955 tragedy in Le Mans. It finished first in its class and ninth overall and made it pretty clear that Mercedes should not stay away from racing anymore.
Right next to it, proudly standing in the spotlight, there is a 1982 Mercedes-Benz 230TE service car, one of the four made for the UK.
A 1968 Mercedes 280 SL, widely known as the Pagoda, due to its concave roof, brings the success of the late ‘60s into present with elegance and style. Right next to it, there is a car that became a Hollywood star soon after rolling off the assembly line: the 300 SL.
The secret Mercedes-Benz museum hosts a car that belonged to Sir Stirling Moss
Danny is proud to present a 500 SL from 1990 as well. What is special about the convertible with a body in white and an interior in navy blue leather? It belonged to Stirling Moss. The British racing driver asked the carmaker to skip fitting airbags. Everything is original on it. It never underwent restoration. The secret museum also displays a photo of him driving the car. Last year, the 500 SL left Kent to go to Brackley for Valtteri Bottas’ farewell parade.
A 100-kilogram 3-meter diameter Mercedes-Benz star is up on the ceiling. But what is the model in the spotlight right under it? You’ll have to hit the play button below to find out.