Replica Marlene Dietrich Benz Has Real Star Appeal; Noel Cumner Finds the Harder He Works, the Luckier He Seems to Be
Byline: Hayden Johnson
THERE'S nothing better than a crisp Sunday morning drive under the blue skies with your loved one. Especially if that loved one is a sexy, shiny, classic Merc named Marlene.
Cars are wonderful things. Some people use them as an object of transport, purely for travel from point A to point B.
For others, the car isn't about the destination, it's about the journey.
It's a complicated love affair.
Cars take us to our jobs, we run to them in the rain, sit with them while waiting for the kids to emerge from the school gate, drive them to clear our heads and when we say goodbye to them it's often an emotional experience.
Noel Cumner's car is his second love (behind his wife Robyn, he assures me). He admires and adores her.
In 1936, Mercedes-Benz was commissioned to design a personalised model for international movie star Marlene Dietrich.
Noel purchased a replica Marlene in 2011 online after she was recently shipped from the United States in reasonable condition.
An original would easily fetch more than $1million today.
Even in the replica, the aura and beauty of the original is clear.
It took the Fraser Coast man 15 months to give her a complete overhaul of everything to make it legal on Australian roads.
But after many pots of paint, WD-40 and swearing, the old girl retains the charm of the original Marlene.
"She's an absolute beauty," he said.
Under the bonnet, Marlene has a 3.8L V6 Ford motor with a Mustang front-end and C4 gearbox.
Noel fell in love with Marlene after searching on the internet for a classic. …