I can only restate what everyone's already said. They are great cars.
I rescued mine from the junkyard with 166K on it. Put a few months of work into getting it back on the road and have put 6K trouble free miles on it. My shakedown cruise was a trip to Las Vegas, saw a shade over 20 MPG on the trip. Averaging 14.4 MPG for the 6K miles. I find the mileage to be better than my 4.5.
Bottom ends on the V-8's seem to last forever (maybe 350-400K, not bad for gassers) if properly taken care of. Many repairs are doable by able DIYers, so that helps to cut repair costs dramatically. Only a few of the "specialized" parts for the 560 fall in the steep range.
PS: Earl, I didn't forget about you (but your email got buried in the massive mails I get). I looked through my spares box and only have that one center console panel. It has a couple small cracks at the window switch cut outs and slight clouding, plus the rubber trim ring is about shot. If you are still interested, drop a line.
'73 280SEL 4.5 (9/72)- RIP
Only 8,173 units built from 5/71 thru 11/72
'02 CLK320 Cabriolet - wifey's mid-life crisis
2012 VW Jetta Sportwagon TDI...at least its a diesel
Non illegitemae carborundum.