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Old 08-20-2002, 12:15 AM
JFAZ's Avatar
Registered User
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 90
calling all 190E opinions


I am looking into buying a 190E 2.6 (like I have always liked) and am asking for anyone's opinion on the following points regarding late model 190E 2.6's:

- How is the performance of the 190E/2.6 in comparison to a 300E/3.0 keeping in mind the weight difference?

- Are there any differences between the 190E/2.6 and Sportline model other than interior cosmetics and suspension?

- I am used to cruising L.A. freeways at 75 in my 300E very comfortably; being that the 190 has a lower top speed does that mean the RPM's will be higher (in the 190) and therefore cause more noise in the cabin?

Any other personal experience that you might have about comparing the 190E/2.6 vs. 300E/3.0 (other than obvious cargo and passenger space differences) would be greatly appreciated.

Jerome Faszer
05 E55
03 E500
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Old 08-20-2002, 09:07 AM
Jim's500E's Avatar
Large Member
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Manchester, Connecticut
Posts: 1,325
2.6 will have the same motor as an old 300E; the straight 6...not much in the performance dept. but a great cruiser....Sportline would be the model to get if possible...a little lower, wider wheels, better seats, tighter turning radius. ..great little car...I had a 1992 2.6 and loved it...solid...just like its bigger brother in the 300E....

1992 500E
2007 CLK63
2003 Audi RS6
2001 Audi allroad
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Old 08-20-2002, 09:46 AM
tvpierce's Avatar
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Portland, ME
Posts: 612
I have a 190E/2.3, so I can't speak specifically about the 2.6 engine, but I can tell you that when I bought my car, I was looking at a 300E and the 190E. Same milage, same price, the 300 was 4 years older. I actually preferred the 190 to the 300 because it felt a little more nimble. (it ought to, it is a considerably smaller car) I'm usually driving solo, so space isn't an issue. But on occasion, I can comfortably fit the whole family (wife + 2 kids) for an around-town jaunt. When we travel any distance, we take the Volvo 940 Turbo Wagon.

Jeff Pierce
Jeff Pierce

Current Vehicles:
'92 Mercedes 190E/2.3 (247K miles/my daily driver)
'93 Volvo 940 Turbo Wagon (263K miles/a family truckster with spunk)
'99 Kawasaki Concours
Gravely 8120
Previous Vehicles:
'85 Jeep CJ-7 w/ Fisher plow (226K miles)'93 Volvo 940 Turbo Wagon
'53 Willys-Overland Pickup
'85 Honda 750F Interceptor
'93 Nissan Quest
'89 Toyota Camry Wagon
'89 Dodge Raider
'81 Honda CB 750F Super Sport
'88 Toyota Celica
'95 Toyota Tacoma
'74 Honda CB 550F
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Old 08-20-2002, 11:05 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Saugus, CA USA
Posts: 2,006
Cruising at 75? Better not be in the fast lane slowing people down

I have a 5 speed that turns the engine a 3000 rpm at 80. It cruises just fine with lots left.
5 speed '91 190E 2.6 320,000 mi. (new car, fast, smooth as silk six, couldn't find any more Peugeots)
5 speed '85 Peugeot 505 2.5l Turbo Diesel 266,000 mi. (old car, fast for a diesel, had 2 others)
5 speed '01 Jetta V6 (new wifes car, pretty quick)
5 speed '85 Peugeot 505 2.2l Turbo Gas 197,000 mi. (wifes car, faster, sadly gone just short of 200k )
5 speed '83 Yamaha 750 Maxim 14,000 mi. (fastest)
0 speed 4' x 8' 1800 lb Harbor Freight utility trailer (only as fast as what's pulling it)
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Old 08-20-2002, 12:32 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 223
Factory Sportline has a slightly smaller steering wheel, closer ratio steering, lowered sport suspension, wider lower-profile tires and recaro seats front and back -- handling is excellent, on a par with my C43 AMG (but without the power coming out of curves).

190E backseat is smaller than the 300E and the steering coilumn doesn't adjust (my only gripe). Sportline seats are not for widebodies -- my 95 LB, 5'1" daughter fits perfectly (it's her car).

80MPH on highway is fine but engine revs high and can be a bit noisy -- best for zipping around in town.

If possible, look for a '93 Limited Edition 2.6 -- rare, as only 700 were made, but all 190E options + factory Sportline + special black paint and leather (black with red panels and piping) + factory debadged.
'98 C43 AMG
'88 420SEL
'93 190E Limited Edition (including factory Sportline package)
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Old 08-20-2002, 12:44 PM
Senior Canadian Member
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Posts: 827
if you don't really need the room and are looking for a car to run about town in, the 190E is ample. the rear seat, however is much more cramped, so if you're going to be carrying a full load of people, you'll probably want to consider the 300E.

my further $.02: 2.3-16 rocks the cazbah!
'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
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Old 08-20-2002, 01:11 PM
JFAZ's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 90
Thanks for all the great opinions... Keep them coming.

I think that I will be persuing the 93 Sportline. How much of a premium ($$$) is put on this rare option?

I rarely carry any backseat passengers so the size difference between the 190 and 300 are not an issue. I am more concerned about the relative power under the hood of the 190 (2.6) in relation to the 300.

05 E55
03 E500
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Old 08-20-2002, 01:14 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 223
You can always add the Sportline suspension and wheels aftermarket -- see:

You will not get the smaller steering wheel and close ratio steering, however, nor will you get the front and rear Recaro seats (tho you could try to find a 2.3-16V in a junkyard if that really mattered to you).
'98 C43 AMG
'88 420SEL
'93 190E Limited Edition (including factory Sportline package)
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Old 08-20-2002, 06:17 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Posts: 17

I have had a 190E 2.6 (1987 model) for the past nine years and thought it was great.

My particular beast was never very quick off the line but once on the highway it was fine.

I regularly run it at about 120 - 130 kph (75 - 80 mph) and it just purred over with no fuss. There is some engine noise but it was, in my opinion, more of a reassuring hum that all was well rather than an irritating intrusion.

I drove the car from Vancouver to California with no drama and no concern that I was pushing the car to its limits. When needing to accelerate to overtake, it always had plenty to spare from 120 kph.

I now have a 2000 m.y. W210 E430 so performance in the 190E seems a little deficient but it is still a good car to drive around.

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