1993 Mercedes Benz 190E
Published July 26, 2012
The 1993 Mercedes Benz 190E has been one of the most economic cars in the history of Mercedes Benz, Allowing a user to get up to 29 miles per gallon. Today that may not seem like much, but imagine how great that was when American gas guzzlers in 1993 used to get you 8 miles to the gallon. The 190E model was first sold in August, 1983. The introduction of the 190-series was a completely new idea and design for Mercedes. It was the first ‘small’ car for the brand and was therefore called the baby Benz. The introduction of the sporty 16V model brought the brand Mercedes into a market where it had to prove itself as a newcomer. Therefore, Mercedes arranged a record run aimed at proving the extreme reliability of their cars.
The 190 also had a revolutionary new chassis design, developed specifically for the new model, which proved a great success. The main feature in the 190E was the multi-link independent rear suspension system. Each of the rear wheels was located by five independent links for optimum wheel control, with lateral and longitudinal forces effectively balanced in all driving situations. This improved steering precision and ensured very well-behaved handling characteristics. The new rear axle design was also lighter and more compact than its predecessors. The front axle featured shock-absorber struts located by individual triangular wishbones and anti-dive control. This gave the W 201 excellent straight-line stability, and being a relatively flat structure it also left a lot of space under the hood.
The interior of the Benz in 93 was just as good as you’ll find in a 2003 model, ten years later. Obviously, it doesn’t have as many advanced features nor is it as modern as the 2003, but with super comfortable leather seats, all-power everything, and a big sunroof, it was well advanced for its time. There are brand new 2013 vehicles that are not even close to being as comfortable as the 190E. On the other hand, the leather used in the seats doesn’t get along with the sun very well, and after a hot day, the leather gets so hot that it can probably burn somebody.
Considering how much they cost, both new and secondhand, you’re getting quite a cramped rear seat and a rather small trunk, hence the baby Benz name. Two people fit comfortably up front, but two adults in the back seat aren’t likely to be pleased. On the other hand, you get a good-sized list of Mercedes-Benz virtues, leading off with rock-solid construction, desirable safety features, and thoughtful engineering. Performance brings no complaints, either. The 4-cylinder engine in a 190 2.3 performs well once you’re underway, but acceleration is rather gentle from a standing start. The 6-cylinder engine in a 190E 2.6 feels more robust. The six returns only slightly less fuel economy than the 4-cylinder. With automatic transmissions, a 190E 2.6 averaged 19.2 mpg, compared to 20.1 mpg in a 190 2.3. Handling and road holding are extremely capable on both models. The taut Mercedes-Benz suspension, while allowing low-speed bumps to thump through to the seat, is quite absorbent in most situations. It also helps produce good high-speed control. Everything is aimed toward serious driving: brakes, steering, seating, outward visibility, and control placement.
In conclusion, this really is one of the most economic cars Mercedes Benz has made. Of course it’s missing some features, but for the price you can’t ask for much more. Today, there are plenty of other cars that get even better fuel economy and more features, but they will run you at least 30 or 40 grand if you’re buying it new. Nowadays you can pick up a 190E in good condition for a few grand. It’s a great and reliable car if you’re looking for budget cars. Don’t let the year scare you. As long as the car was taken care of well, it should be able to last you until at least 200K miles.
Categories: Gear Grinding