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Old 05-05-2003, 07:04 AM
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Join Date: May 2003
Location: Michigan
Posts: 31
Question '89 190 2.6 Advice

i'm a new user. i'm currently a volvo fan but have my eye on an '89 190 2.6 benz with 94k on her. good shape, all records. i've never owned a benz and wondered if i could get alittle feedback on what to look for, is this a good engine, a good model? is this a good benz to start with? asking $6k. thanks in advance.
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Old 05-05-2003, 07:35 AM
it leaks, its german
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: raleigh nc
Posts: 1,111
PersonallyI'd spend a few bucks more and get a 300e 124 chassis car. A little bigger and gerally the 124 cars seem to age more gracefully than 201's. (my personal opinion, 201s are rugged tho')

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Old 05-05-2003, 09:15 AM
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Join Date: May 2003
Location: Michigan
Posts: 31
109 2.6

joe p.,
thanks for the input. i'm new to the benz-world, but i've always been a fan. the 190 is a 201 body style? what opinion do you have the the 2.6 engine? when you say age gracefully, are you pertaining to the body? engine? electrical? is $6k a fair price?
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Old 05-05-2003, 10:22 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 563
It's a good engine, inline-6. Has a common problem of oil leaking from timing cover. Not a big deal.

$6k sounds a bit on the high side. It better be in great shape for that price. Make sure you take it to a Mercedes mechanic and have it looked at first.
Mike Heath
1988 560SL Black/Palomino
1988 300SEL Black Pearl/Burgandy
1984 500SEC Anthracite Grey/Palomino
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Old 05-05-2003, 10:27 AM
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Join Date: May 2003
Location: Michigan
Posts: 31
thanks for the reply,
yeah, i had an inkling it'd be high since it's at a used foreign car dealership. it's a 2-owner car with all service being done there. they just replaced the valve seats. how 'bout timing belt? is that ever an issue with this engine?
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Old 05-05-2003, 11:32 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Southern California
Posts: 2,010
Replaced the valve seats??? That doesn't sound right. How about the valve guides and seals. Verify what was actually done. If the head was recently refreshed that is good!

The Merc 2.6L and 3.0L in line sixes of that era (called M103) have timing chains, which are generally trouble free if the oil is changed within the manufacturer's recommendations. These engines are torque shy, but love to rev, and are smooth as silk. Check the engine for oil leaks particularly at the front and right rear. Also check for any coolant seepage at the head/block interface, and check that the climate control system operates properly.

Check that the engine has a steady idle speed in drive and neutral. These engines tend to have high emissions, so if emission tests are required in your area inspect the latest emission test report and any history you can come up with.

The 190E (W201 chassis)is essentially a 7/8 scale version of the 300E (W124 chassis). IMO it is probably the best looking and proportioned small sedan ever buiit. It has about the same front seat room as the W124, but a smaller back seat and trunk; 190s are basically good cars, but like most Mercs they are complicated, and problems with systems like the KE fuel injection system and climate control can be expensive and exasperating.

For the mileage the asking price is reasonable if the car is a "cream puff".

'88 190E 2.6, five-speed manual, 73K miles
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Old 05-05-2003, 11:39 AM
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Join Date: May 2003
Location: Michigan
Posts: 31
thanks duke,
i really appreciate the input. imo, the car is a creampuff and only has 94k on her. i was able to speak with the previous owner this morning, and no joke, she is a little old lady. a school teacher. she did say it was using a quart of oil bimonthly and the dealer told me they replaced the "valve seals". looks like i've got enough to go on here. i think i'll pick her up and be a regular on
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