Thread: 190e 2.3-16?
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Old 03-12-2002, 03:26 AM
yhliem yhliem is offline
Senior Canadian Member
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Posts: 827

the cossie is a special car for more than just it's tranny.

you really should try and find someone the car mag articles on the 16v. they unanimously applaud the predictable handling and the solid braking of the car. yes, the manual tranny adds to the allure somewhat, but the engine is special too.

based on the 8 valve block, cosworth was commissioned to develop a twin-cam, 4 valve, aluminum cylinder head which was more commonly seen on motorcycles and race cars (and the odd ferrari) of the day.

in euro trim, the 2.3L cossie put out 181bhp. when the 2.5-16 was brought out in 1988/9, it put out 195bhp. then of course there are the Evolutions. the EvoI prduced the same numbers but around 500 rpm higher in the rev range and the EvoII in stock form, produced 230bhp.

all of this power was easily managable because of the superb balance of the chassis. in case you didn't know, the 190E was the first car to use MB's patented 5-link rear suspension design.

the interior trim of the car was pretty special too. not every car comes equipped with standard, full leather power seats made by Recaro. the only options available in the north american model were, heated seats, power sunroo, and rear head rests. the car was that well equipped.

Add to all of this the rarity of the car (less than 2000 offical cossies were imported the north america in the 2 years they were offered here) and you've got more than just a benz with a 5-speed.

incidentally, the 5-speed is a getrag tranny with a racing shift pattern to facilitate faster shifts between 2 & 3, which are the gears one would use the most when driving in a spirited manner. and there's no overdrive. top gear is 1:1 so you have 5 power gears.

i, and several others, could go on at length about the 16 valve, but your time would probably be better served if you did a search on the 2.3-16 in this forum or if you looked up some of the following articles:

Road & Track Sept '84
Road & Track Aug '86
European Car Feb '98

again, you can't really compare the 16v to a 124. be it a 300, 400 or 500. you might as well try to compare a 500E to an S class. different class of car and therefore not really a fair comparison.

it all depends on what you're looking for. the 16 valve needs to be kept at above 3000 rpm to get the most out of the car. it's not meant for people looking for a super comfy, cruising down the highway experience. this car demands that you get involved in the driving 'cause that's how you're going to get the most peformance and fun out of it.

so, in a nutshell. if you want a merc to have a merc, you probably won't be happy with the cossie. it's a twin cam, quattro valve, 4 banger so the engine's pretty buzzy and the feel is rough and ready. BUT if you want to have a car that's somewhat exclusive and gets you 110% involved in the act of driving, the 16v is a good car to have.
'94 W124.036 249/040 leder; 8.25x17 EvoIIs
'93 W124.036 199/040 leder; 8.25x17 EvoIIs, up in flames...LITERALLY!
'93 W124.036 481/040 leder; euro delivery; 8.25x17 EvoIIs
'88 R107.048 441/409 leder; Euro lights
'87 W201.034 199/040 leder; Euro lights; EvoII brakes; 8x16 EvoIs - soon: 500E rear brakes
'70 R113.044 050/526; factory alloys; Euro lights

Last edited by yhliem; 03-12-2002 at 03:37 AM.
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