Home / Social media / News / The one-off Mercedes-Benz-based Heuliez Intruder Convertible is pure 90s madness - and it's for sale.


In the last year or so we’ve been seeing a rise in popularity of lifted cars, cars that were meant for smooth and flat roads that have been converted to tackle gravel roads and dirt tracks. While the idea has been around for a while, thanks to the release of actual series production models that have received the same treatment we’re seeing more of these projects pop up. On a manufacturer scale, there’s the Lamborghini Huracán Sterrato and the Porsche 911 Dakar, and on the aftermarket side, there are cars like Adam LZ’s Nissan R32 Safari, a lifted Tesla in China, a raised Delorean and Superfast Matt’s Viper, among others. In the mid-90s in Kempton Park, there was a chap who used to do backyard conversions to lift cars, some received full new underpinnings and others were body-swapped with a Nissan 1400 Champ or Beetle body fitted over a Suzuki SJ 4x4 chassis. The weirdness that you see here is also from the mid-90s, except this one-off conversion was clearly done with a pretty serious budget with a Mercedes-Benz SLK as the base for the project. It’s called the Heuliez Intruder Convertible, and it was designed by Marc Deschamps while the physical work was carried out by French coachbuilder, Louis Heuliez Carrosserie - one of France’s oldest coachbuilders. The only thing that’s been left in the same spec that Mercedes-Benz made it was the powerplant, which in this case is the 3.2-litre inline 6 rated at a whopping 153 kW and it’s mated to the boggo 4-speed automatic transmission. Fast it is not. Luckily there’s been a lifted model in the Mercedes-Benz arsenal for a good 45 years now, the G Wagon, or Gelandewagen as Merc fans like to call it. This means the underpinnings needed for the project were easily available.

The underpinnings of this slice of weird are all G Wagon, the G320 chassis, complete with the original transmission, transfer case, solid axles, triple locking differentials, and a healthy 12 inches of ground clearance. While the bodywork is SLK-esque, there’s been loads of CAD work to make it different. It wears a steel and carbon fibre skin, and has a fully functional retractable roof and LED exterior lighting, a common feature now but almost unheard of in the 90s. The interior uses factory Mercedes-Benz components and switchgear and there’s rather miff blue leather covering all the big bits. It’s 28 years old now, but the work still could have been a bit neater, especially on the dash and centre console, but to be fair not many people have ever had the chance to have a proper close look at the finishings and being a concept show car not many ever would. The strange creation has been seen at a few shows around the world and has worn a few different shades of paint in that time, but it recently ended up in the UK and was taken through to well-known specialist DK Engineering who treated the thing to an extensive restoration worth a reported $300,000 - or R5,750,000. I dunno about you, but for more money than many people make in a lifetime, the car should be absolutely immaculate, or at least the screws in the dash trim shouldn't twist the leather like it does. Details matter. The Heuliez Intruder find itself back the the United States, and it drives perfectly well, and the bulletproof G Wagon underpinnings mean it can tackle most off-road conditions with ease, top down or up. While it was given that expensive makeover, it’s expected to fetch that same money when it hits the auction block with Bonham’s soon. Estimates are it will sell for up to $300,000. We’re no sure who would spend that kind of money on something like this, but that saying about a fool and his money exists for a reason…  

Take a look at the YouTube video from way back when that shows off how weird 90s motoring could be when budget and taste don't get brought into the equation. This strange lifted Mercedes-Benz is next-level weird, and while it's a one-off worth lots of money, luckily it will be someone else's money that will pay for this thing at the Bonham's auction: Mercedes G-Wagen Concept Intruder By Heuliez | DK Engineering TV

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