Author Topic: What color is really Parchment?  (Read 307 times)


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What color is really Parchment?
« on: 11 December 2018, 03:16 PM »
My car has interior code 205, which according to the MB brochure I have is Parchment.  The cover photo looks a lot lighter than the inside sample color.

Most upholstery companies lists several codes for Parchment, but not 205.
265 is the common number found for parchment.

this page shows 1971-1975 265 pergament and 1975-1980 205 pergament.   Anyone know why there is a different number and if the color is actually different?  In the leather picture, and in my car the color is strongly "yellowish" as opposed to a very light bright whiter color  on this page the fabric pergament is the much brighter color, even on all the trim parts.

Attached are 2 photos from ebay of parchment parts.   Is parchment a color that turns darker over time?  or is the lighter ones for vinyl or fabric cars?

Anyone have a Mercedes brochure with a photo of 265 parchment?

I have read over this post  So I do understand that each different type of trim has a different 4 digit color code. - I noticed in there that Aaron's sample book show the different parchment colors depending if you have MB tex or leather.

But what I am really after is it in reality that all the different pieces are actually/nearly the same visual color?  I am after this info as I pick out the interior supplier of leather and carpets and then will want to get vinyl dye to refresh all the rest of the interior trim pieces. I just need to get a good sample of the color I need so I can have it color matched.
'68 250S, '77 6.9 euro, '91 300SE, '98 SL500 '14 CLS550


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Re: What color is really Parchment?
« Reply #1 on: 11 December 2018, 09:33 PM »
I had completely forgotten about that post you made reference to.  Time flies. 

To directly answer your question, yes, there are different shades of Parchment.  From 1959-1967 it was a particular shade. From 1967-1975 it was a different shade, and from 1975-1981 it was, yet, a THIRD different shade.  Also, the shades varied between leather, MB-Tex, Velour, and Streifen Karo. 

MB-Tex holds up pretty well regarding how resistant it is to fading.  Though, it can fade or darken if exposed to excess sunlight.  Leather from the W116 era was surface dyed, and with age all surface dyed leathers darken slightly.  The plastic trim pieces, especially parchment, seem to like to turn yellow and/or darken.  Blue is probably the second worst color to turn.  When I bought my 1976 280S about 9 years ago It had only 48,000 miles on it, and had been garaged its whole life.  Even with 48,000 miles on it a lot of the plastic interior pieces (blue in color) had taken on a brownish/yellowish hue.  While it's disappointing that our interior trim pieces do this, I doubt very seriously that a new car could compare to the longevity of the W116 interior pieces.  It's a double edged sword it seems. 

The picture below shows the progression of the color parchment leather from 1959 through 1981.  The first version is on the left, code 209.  In the middle is 265, and on the right is 205.  While I can't capture the pure essence of the shade differences with my camera, it should still be obvious that a difference exists between the three. 

Places that sell bulk Parchment vinyl and modern vat dyed leather will only offer one shade of parchment to cover all variances to cut down on end user costs.  Also, be aware that they'll do the same thing with carpeting.  For example, the late W109 cars that had blue interiors came with two different shades of blue velour carpeting, medium blue and dark blue.  However, only one shade of blue is offered by most upholstery companies, and most aren't even aware that there were two different shades to start with.  So when you question them about it they'll try to convince you that there was only one shade of blue.  Another pet peeve of mine is that they  offer black multi loop carpeting.  Mercedes never used solid black multi loop carpeting in any of their models.  The darkest the used was anthracite....which was a salt and pepper mix of light gray and dark gray.  Yet, I see sooooo many vintage Mercedes with solid black multi loop carpeting in them.  It burns my eyes. haha 

Anyway, if you want the correct shade of any color of leather, you'll have to buy your leather from Aeristo or HYDES.  They're the only ones that offer the correct shades of most colors, and also in the correct surface dyed leather.  They can also custom match any color for you.  HYDES has actually been to the archives at the MB Classic museum to confirm that they have replicated the correct shades of colors, and after having bought their product on several occasions I can say with conviction that their leather is spot on.  Aeristo is just as good, but more costly. 
1966 250se coupe`, black/dark green leather
1970 600 midnight blue/parchment leather
1971 300sel 6.3, papyrus white/dark red leather
1971 280sel Black/black leather
1973 300sel 4.5, silver blue metallic/blue leather
1976 280s astral silver/blue MB Tex