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  #1  
Old 06-01-2002, 04:56 PM
Marsala
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Lightbulb Is there a worthy replacement for the 190E 2.6?

So my 190E 2.6 turned FIFTEEN this month...

I know that's only 2/3 of its life (if even), but I've been toying with the idea of finding a suitable replacement. Some of you may think this a non-issue as an MB (pre Chrysler) is forever.

What do you guys think is a proper "new" 190E 2.6? Something with a beautiful engine, handling, and low weight (hence reasonable fuel econ). Similar power-to-weight ratio, brilliant engineering, and bulletproof reliability. Things I like about newer cars include OBD2, folding rear seats, remote entry.. and lots of those other creature comforts in modern luxury cars like one-touch windows. Sound like some dream car, huh? Everyone has their own dream car.. even Homer Simpson (did he design the new Toyotas?)

Also, modern cars are a tad safer, and pollute a LOT less. There was a Crash Science program on TLC and a clip of the crash scene of this one guy that killed himself in his 190E ont he highway (difficult to watch). I did emissions research as an engineering student and my car is equivalent to something like 10 new ULEV Honda Civics (if not more).

Oh and let's not forget the prestige value of the 190E.. Classy but not flashy, upon closer inspection revealing the three-point star, and easily confused with the 300E.

Well, I've gone on long enough. Hope to hear from you guys.

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  #2  
Old 06-01-2002, 05:24 PM
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I think the 94+ W202 C-classes really are nice cars. They are OBD-II, have one touch windows, and have keyless remote.

I'd also consider a W124 300E/E320. They're a little bigger, but not that much. They're about the same size as a current Honda Accord. My '93 has one touch windows. They are not OBD-II, but who cares? Plus, any used Mercedes can be fitted with Keyless remote.

You can also buy a kit for $100 that allows you to operate the windows in your car like the VW Jetta. You turn the key in the door lock, and the windows will go up.
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  #3  
Old 06-01-2002, 05:28 PM
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<<You can also buy a kit for $100 that allows you to operate the windows in your car like the VW Jetta. You turn the key in the door lock, and the windows will go up.>>

124-E320 has that --- sun roof too...
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  #4  
Old 06-01-2002, 05:51 PM
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if yours is an automatic 190e2.6, then you have no problem. Like the other guys said, you can go for the 94+ C280 (which is more refined in every way than the W201), or the W124 300E/E320.

but mine is a 5spd manual 190e2.6 and I cannot find a suitable replacement for it that is a "spritual successor", which I define as having an inline-6 and a 5spd manual. And affordable to me. The only thing that comes close (actually a step up in many areas) is the 5spd 300E, which is quite rare.

though the car has its quirks, I love it and can't imagine parting with it. But rather than replacing it, I would imagine getting a companion car with a different character. The E320 or 400E/E420 comes to mind. You need one car to appreciate the other more.

for me, the only real replacement for my car would be a manual BMW 325i/328i (previous generation). Or a manual Euro C280 Sport.
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  #5  
Old 06-01-2002, 11:50 PM
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Really, I don't think you'd ever find a worthy replacement for a Benz of any model you've been driving. Even if you were to hop into another new 190 2.6, you'd find the characteristics different from what you'd been used to.

But if you're really bent on looking at alternative to replace the 2.6 you already have, the closest you might find is the C220. Forewarned, you would expect a higher maintanence tag wth the W202s in terms of an occasional wiring problem, costlier parts, and cheaper interior quality.

Hang on to your 190 for its classic value.
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  #6  
Old 06-01-2002, 11:54 PM
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Hmm...successor to the 190E?...I don't think Mercedes makes one!

For me, I'd choose a Lexus IS300 with 5-speed manual transmission. Well built, nice chassis, smooth 6-cylinder, nimble handling. And I think it meets all of your dream car requirements

Or maybe a one or two year old Audi A4 1.8TQ...not as nimble but well built. An S4 would be even better!
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  #7  
Old 06-02-2002, 12:14 AM
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While it is admittedly (and literally) butt ugly, the MercedesShop site owners loved the handling of the C230 coupe, which seems the closest in the current lineup to the 190 16V IMHO. Sports Coupe pics
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  #8  
Old 06-02-2002, 04:25 AM
Marsala
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Wow, there are some really good points made there. I suppose what's really disappointing from a Mercedes-Benz marketing perspective is that there is no obvious Mercedes answer, is there?
What about the 300E and S classes? Are their successors worthy?

My opinion is that the W202 isn't really a proper successor to the W201. It's bigger, thirstier, but less nimble. and no manual stick! I've driven a 98 C280Sport, and an "AMG" 1995 C280 "Sport" (it felt authentic to me! anyone know if it's for real?) and would seek out a 96 Sport. C280Sport is on the list.

I've considered an A4, and came close to getting a used 99.5 5spd... the A4 is still on my list. I'm not into the BMW Image (people in Vancouver/Richmond know what I mean).

The C-coupe, unfortunately, was stricken from my list when I drove it. I'm not a fan of the 230Kompressor engine. It made a terrible noise. It's looks are too controversial (someone mistook one for a Mazda 323!!!!!). I'm sure it handles really really well. But then, so does a MINI(not on list - too flashy). So does an Infiniti G20(not on list - too anti-flashy). So does a Ford freaking Focus (rented many.. full of Built Ford Tough fun).

So my 201.029 stays for now.. while I continue to ignore my "get a new car, you old-fashioned kid" critics.
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  #9  
Old 06-02-2002, 04:30 AM
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Everyone has given really great options for a 190 replacement. I wouldn't want to trade my 190 for anything...well I'm sure I could think of something Ferrari 355 maybe . The only other car that I would tell you to take a look at is possibly either the new Jetta or Passat. With the new Euro VR6 engine coming soon, 204hp, those cars will be a lot of fun. Personally I would go with the new Sport Coupe. Great value for what you get and its a quick, nimble car.

Later,
Giancarlo
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  #10  
Old 06-02-2002, 03:32 PM
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For an automatic 190E 2.6? Well, you could jump into a C280 automatic and enjoy 194 hp versus 157 hp and doing zero to sixty mph in the low 7s at full throttle, not high 8's. Additionally, 190Es are extremely small cars....about the size of the E30 BMW 3-series. You'd be happy in a W202.

Or, if you wanted to shift your own gears, get a 1993 or later BMW 325i 4-door with a manual shifter. This car's 2.5 liter VANOS six will blow away the 190E's 157 hp unit with 189 hp, and higher torque. I think the BMW would probably be more reliable than the early Audi A4....have heard questions about transmission reliability, etc, in those cars.

In regards to ymsin's statement: There is a car that would be a "replacement" for a 380SE. It's called a 560SEL. Everything that makes a 380SE good and big stomping V-8 power and V-8 torque to boot. Since my car's mileage isn't anything special anyway, I'd happily move into a 560SEL if given the opportunity. There are always alternatives out there. Drive a big V-8 Mercedes and you'll understand.

-Sam
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  #11  
Old 06-03-2002, 09:29 AM
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My Dad has "replaced" (not sold yet) his 1990 190E 2.6 with a 1998 C230. His comments:

"The C230 is quicker and faster, and has just as much luxury. It get's MUCH better fuel economy and has no wind noise at highway speed. The engine bay of the four cylinder is open and maintenance is easy. The ACC works better, and the AC blows much colder. The double wish-bone front suspension really improves the handling. The C230 rides nicer than the 190E and is a better handling car. It has more safety features including more airbags and ASR."

He thinks the C230 is the "equivalent" of the 2.6, as the four cylinder offers a touch less power, but better all around performance. He was surprised at how much better the mileage is.
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  #12  
Old 06-03-2002, 05:06 PM
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how about a 16v?
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  #13  
Old 06-03-2002, 08:08 PM
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C240

They're available with a six-speed, but they're too new to be priced in my range.

I do keep looking for 190e 5 speeds and found one the other day, even called the guy just to talk. It was a 1993 Sportline with 80k miles. I was almost tempted to buy it and sell my 1991
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  #14  
Old 06-03-2002, 09:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by yhliem
how about a 16v?
The C230 IS a 16V...:p
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  #15  
Old 06-03-2002, 09:36 PM
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when the W201 was first introduced, many pundits hailed the exterior design as a "bold" one. It had a number of character lines along the body, which, according to Bruno Sacco, was meant to mimic the streamlines of the C-111 experimental car. It's pinched-up tail was trend-setting, with many followers, most notably the Jetta.

my favorite styling feature is the C-pillar with its vent holes, and the rear portion of the roof, with that subtle fold, and how they bend to meet the rear window.

even compared with the W124, the W201 has a crisper, tauter styling, due to its smaller size.

the W202 and subsequent models began to shed the taut, purposeful origami styling, replacing them with subtle (and beautiful) character lines. Actually, the W202 is just beginning to grow on me, which says something about its timeless design.

so at least in the styling department, there probably is no real successor to the W201.

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