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Instead of a subframe, the rear axle of an SL W113 uses an independent swing axle with a compensator spring traversing the pivot point. Thrust arms mount each half of the axle tubes to the floor pans with rubber bushes at either end 

The differential is a traditional ring gear and pinion design, with the factory option of a limited-slip differential introduced in 1966 with the launch of the W113 250SL. Although variations for gear ratios do exist, the vast majority were left as standard with the most common on European models being 3.92. This was later replaced by 3.69 at chassis number 011132.

A common fault in the rear axle is the rubber gaiter between the differential and the right-side axle tube. This can fail with age allowing the gear oil to escape resulting in total failure. All SL W113 owners should be aware of this and that the leak from the rear cannot be left until the following winter. A thorough repair would see the axle split in two to replace the corrugated boot, although a repair ‘open style’ unit is available but should be considered a temporary fix only.

During reassembly of the rear axle, configuring the ride height of an SL W113 is somewhat of an art form.  A technician uses experience and feel to select bushes and spring shims by dimension before being able to verify the results only when the car is fully assembled and on the ground. Trial and error is common and for a total restoration, one can expect to spend up to two days just perfecting the way the car sits.

To support owners looking to achieve their preferred road height at home, SLSHOP can supply you with everything from a complete set of shock absorbers and springs to all the required differential components. Our stock is available across different pricing and quality tiers to suit your budget, including Reproduction Premium, Heritage, Remanufactured and Reclaimed Mercedes Parts. 

To quickly locate your required SL W113 rear axle, browse our website using the search bar, category filter or by using the line drawing. Alternatively, email [email protected] or call our team on +44 (0) 1789 337 070. Each soft and hard top item can be shipped with next-day delivery to any postcode worldwide. 


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