Lexi Stellwood Takes Us On A Drive In Her 1982 Mercedes-Benz

"This car is magic"

Photographed by Faith Silva.

The following story appears in the October 2016 issue of NYLON.

“I don’t use GPS,” says Lexi Stellwood, as we come upon a roadblock on a winding street in the Hollywood Hills. “I can look at a map and be like, ‘That’s where I’m going.’ But sometimes we take little detours.” When you’re driving a car as quirky and comfy as Honey Ryder, her light-yellow 1982 Mercedes-Benz 300D Turbo Diesel, small diversions are more of an enjoyment than an inconvenience.

The model and singer (her new all-girl band is called Barcelona) paid $3,500 for the car nearly six years ago when she moved from New York to Los Angeles. Since then, Stellwood’s made it distinctly hers: A Big Sur bumper sticker adorns the back, floral fabric is affixed to the ceiling to cover ripped leather from a backseat bike storage mishap, and a jumble of necklaces and crystals (including a “good luck gem” for driving and one that looks like “a unicorn horn”) hang from the rearview mirror.

Like any vintage car, it has its imperfections—right now, one of the headlights is out, an automatic transmission fluid leak needs fixing, and the A/C is on the fritz—but they don’t matter. Turning the ignition, her silver bangles glinting in the sunlight, Stellwood smiles and declares, “This car is magic.”

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