McPherson College’s first Pebble Beach entry wins second in class

McPherson College, a Kansas liberal arts school known for its four-year degree in automotive restoration, reached a major goal having restored a 1953 Mercedes-Benz 300 S Cabriolet that was accepted to the 2023 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance

. But it wasn’t just shown; it won second in class, a major achievement for any restoration shop, let alone one consisting of students learning the trade.

This also fulfills a goal the college set in 2013: to restore, show and place with a car at Pebble Beach

. Amanda Montgomery Gutierrez, Provost and Vice President for Auto Restoration at the college told us: “Ten years ago we set a bold vision: by 2023, McPherson college automotive restoration will compete at Pebble Beach with a car restored by students. Today, that vision was realized. It came about with a lot of commitment from our project director, Brian Martin, and many students over the last seven years. I couldn’t be more proud.”

1953 Mercedes-Benz 300 S Cabriolet

The specific car restoration has been years in the making, too. The project began with a rough, but restorable Mercedes in 2018. Restoration was thorough, with the car being fully disassembled and virtually every component receiving attention. That included frame repairs, new sheet metal, a fully redone interior with upholstery, rebuilt engine, suspension and brakes, and even exterior trim replated at the college.

With the project taking about five years, a large number of students have benefitted from the car, with it providing internships and senior projects for some. And of course some students arrived and graduated before the car was completed.

This caps off a banner year for McPherson College. The college recently hit its donation match goal to reach $500 million. And that was then expanded upon being met. The college now has a $1,592,000,000 endowment. This is also in addition to the gift of a Ferrari


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