1989 Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.6 with 49,000 original miles

With each successive generation of C class, the original W201 chassis “baby Benz” has developed a cult following. Many of these cars were bought by folks who never had owned a Mercedes-Benz before and used and abused them much like any other car. Then there were those who appreciated the 190E for its virtues and subsequently, there are still a few clean, low mileage examples out there to prove it. Like this one:

The seller states:

You are viewing one of the finest examples of a 1989 Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.6 with only 48,920 2 owner Actual miles or 78,730 Kilometers. This Baby Benz hails from Canada and was imported into the States in December 2007 having 40,000 Actual miles on it. The original speedometer is in Kilometers but I can have it converted to MPH at no additional cost to you. This Mercedes runs, drives and looks like new. The 2.6 liter engine runs super smooth and powerful and the automatic transmission shifts flawlessly. There are no leaks of any kind. It was recently serviced and new front Bilstein struts, new hood foam and 4 brand new Continental tires were just installed.

Everything works as new including Ice cold A/C, all power windows, locks, sunroof, mirrors, antenna, outside temperature gauge and even has heated seats! This 190E has never been involved in any accidents or had any paintwork. A perfect Carfax report is available upon request. The Original factory paint shines like new with only a couple minor stone chips and one scratch that runs along the rear passenger door. The interior is spotless and looks Brand New. There are no cracks in the dash or woodgrain and the seats, carpets, door panels and headliner are all perfect.

When I was in college, my father had a 1992 190E 2.6 in diamond blue and I loved that car. The smaller inline six engine teamed with the smooth 4-speed automatic makes this a joy to drive and gives it plenty of power for all situations. The car was also economical and reliable to boot. Unfortunately, that car was broadsided at 40mph by someone in a Ford Taurus who ran a stop sign and should have subsequently had his license taken away for totalling what was a fantastic car. My father has been on the hunt for just the right 190E ever since, as he claimed this was the best car he ever owned. The buy-it-now price of $7,995 seems right in line with other clean, 190E 2.6 examples I’ve seen out there lately.

As an aside, even Mercedes-Benz themselves recognizes just how important the 190E was and converted a 1992 190E 2.6 Sportline to a 190D with a new, 2.2 liter BlueEFFICIENCY four cylinder diesel engine, pumping out 201 horsepower. With its new lease on life, this 190 can reach 60 mph in 6.2 seconds and return 48 mpg. Hybrid what?

1990 Mercedes 190 D upgraded to new BlueEFFICIENCY engine, jumps from 32 to 48 mpg

-Paul

1985 Mercedes 500SEC AMG 5.4 Widebody 540SEC

UPDATED WITH A NEW LINK TO THE EBAY AUCTION.

I know I’ve posted a lot of Mercedes lately, but that is my passion. Some I post I smile and say, “that is nice”, but some I find and I go “Hell Yes!!” This is one of the later.

Mid eighties Benz cars with genuine AMG modified engines are not very common. You’ll see a number of cars with body modifications, but usually that Miami Vice style look stops with the exterior. This one has the full treatment including one of AMG’s interior, suspension, and engine packages.

This is a low 15,000 mile grey market Euro vehicle. With such low miles it is not surprising that the car looks immaculate. The interior has a dual color treatment similar to some of the modern Designo models and includes a rare 300 km/h AMG speedo. Check out the selection of options on the power seats. Those are Recaro CSE seats that if sold by themselves can go for almost $2000 a piece.

The rear end has been flared out to fit thick meats on the rear wheels.
What really sets this apart though, as I mentioned above, is the engine. The engine bay houses a rare AMG 5.4 liter engine, note the AMG valve covers. This is a very scarce motor. It was third down in terms of power packages that AMG offered in the mid eighties. Number one was the 6.0 liter Hammer motor, which came a bit later, number two was a 5.0 liter 4 valve per cylinder engine that bumped out a conservative rated 340 horsepower and 457 Nm of torque. The 5.4 in this car is a pushed out version of the stock 5.0 liter M117 engine, it puts out 310 hp and a solid 475 Nm of torque.

The seller states that this is one of 25 cars with the 5.4 liter and the widebody conversion. Hard to say what the real number is, but that does not sound unreasonable.

With several days left to go the price has already reached over $25,000 with multiple bids, and the reserve not met. You can tell by that sort of price that this is not your typical 500SEC that you find in your local swap sheet. The rarity is clearly appreciated by aficionados. I would love to have this in my garage.

UPDATE: this eBay auction mysteriously disappeared, possibly a fraudulent seller. The auction did look legit, but if you see this car appear online again be careful. Like I mentioned above there are very few Benzs out there carrying this engine.
UPDATE 2: as you can see in the comments section below the seller contacted us to say he is legit and the auction was pulled due to the Euro VIN # problem we’ve seen other sellers run into when selling grey market cars on eBay.


~Evan

1991 Mercedes-Benz 300SL, rare 5-speed manual

The passing of the R107 chassis Mercedes-Benz 560SL proved a turning point for the classic SL roadster. Gone was the heavy, boulavardier cruiser and in came a more technologically advanced, if heavier, model. Not only was the SL available with the new 5.0 liter, four cam V8, but Mercedes saw fit to equip the new model with the first ever inline six engine for the US market since the 1972 280SL, resurrecting the storied 300SL badge once again. Here we have a 300SL with the rare 5 speed manual option over at Quattroworld.com.

1991 Mercedes-Benz 300SL 5-speed

The seller states:

75,523 miles. The turbo kit was used on this car and removed recently for smog.

Here is a video of a similarly equipped 300E with a Mosselman turbo installed:

R129 SLs have just about reached bottom when it comes to resale value, especially the earlier models. Going forward, clean ones are sure to appreciate, as we have seen with previous generations SLs as they age. While it would take the right kind of person to buy a 5 speed SL, there are very few out there and of those, I’m sure they have their following.

-Paul

Don’t Miss No Reserve Mercedes 1992 500E

This is the last of my last minute Easter posts. Here is a tastefully modified 500E with 153,000 mile. It is up for sale at $9100 no reserve. Even with the mileage that is a very tempting price for a 500E.
The car comes with a blacked out grill and a brand new $9000 paint job. The nice deep dish three piece AMG wheels the seller is keeping, which is unfortunate because they look really good and are contemporary with the car.
There is something funky going on with the headlamp wipers, but that should be an easy fix.
The seller gives a list of recently serviced items including:

WATER PUMP
MOTOR MOUNTS
ARI CONDITIONING
BRAKES
ALIGNMENT
OIL
COOLANT
SHOCK
VALVE COVER GASKETS
REAR SHADE SERVICE
BATTERY
ALPINE AM, FM, SIRIUS, BLUETOOTH PHONE INTERFACE, USB AND IPOD FEATURE

This looks like a solid car for under $10k. Even though the auction ends really soon a PPI would be advised with those miles.

~Evan

1991 Mercedes 560SEC Euro

Number 2 in my last minute Easter Sunday posts is this Euro grey market 560SEC with only 62,000 miles. Sold by the same fellow who is selling the nice 500E that ends today. Perhaps if you buy both this and the matching charcoal black 500E you could get a deal.
Like the 500E this looks to be a very well maintained example. The Euro spec model has the nicer headlights and bumpers, as well as a Euro spec engine.
These are great cars and this is low mileage for the engine. The car is just old enough to avoid many of the electronic gizmos that can cause problems, but new enough that it has plenty of convience features modern Mercedes are known for.
Another fine unmolested example.

~Evan

Last Minute Lazy Sunday Deals Mercedes 500E

It is Easter and there are a number of auctions ending today on eBay that may get missed as folks are traveling or spending time with family.
I thought I would post a few up to get them some attention before they disappeared. So this will be post #1 of 3 quick ones.

1994 Mercedes 500E with 68,000 miles, which is fairly low for the Porsche engineered engine. Buy it now is $25,000.
I’m not sure if this one has appeared on the site before, I don’t think so, but I am almost positive I have seen it for sale before. It is clearly one of the nicer 500Es out there. This one looks really well maintained and original. The pictures back up the seller’s statements about the condition. Perhaps one of the nicest original driver 500Es left on the road.

~Evan

1991 Isdera Imperator 108i Mercedes Gullwing

I’m still keeping up with this unique Mercedes gullwing theme I’ve had going on. If you thought the Styling Garage SGS or the Sbarro were scarce finds, this ups the ante once more. This fantastically rare find comes from reader Victor, awesome catch.

Isdera’s are one of the rarest cars in the world and you hardly ever have the opportunity to see one come up for public sale. For one reason or another this one has popped up on the Japanese Yahoo Auction site. These cars go beyond the standard supercars you people dreamed about. Isdera falls in with brands like Vector and the Cizeta in terms of early 90s exclusivity.

The 108i was built from 1984-1993, according to the auction this one has a date of 1991. The Imperators had their origins as a Mercedes concept car before being turned over to the Isdera company to develop privately. The name means commander in Latin stemming from Roman times.  The seller states that this is one of two that was imported to Japan. With such a long, but limited production run, apx 30 cars, several different Mercedes power plants were used. The seller states that this one has a Mercedes 5.0. The engine cover looks like this is the 32 valve version found in the 500SL of the day. With Isdera modifications, 400 horsepower could be lurking in there. These cars were known as potent performers.

The seller is looking for 58,000,000 Yen which is about $650,000, half of the initial cost of 120,000,000 Yen. That makes the cost of that $90,000 Sbarro look pretty good.

1991 Isdera Imperator 108i for sale on Yahoo Auctions Japan.

Check out this site to learn some more about other Isdera 108i models: http://www.autozine.org/Classiccar/html/Isdera/108i.html.

Here are a couple of videos showing similar vehicles, you can see there is some variation. Note the roof mounted “periscope” mirror for backup driving on both these cars. Note that both videos show the car wearing the same license plate badge, with letters bb and CW311. CW311 was the name of the initial Mercedes prototype styling study, b+b is one of the German Mercedes tuning firms. Also pay attention how in one video the car is wearing all 3 pointed Mercedes star badges, but in the other these have been replaced with Isdera flying eagle badges.

First is an advertisement from Isdera for the 108i.

Second here is one out on the street. This one appears to have an earlier 5.6 Mercedes engine, it sure sounds fine.

~Evan

1983 Mercedes 500SEC Gullwing Styling Garage

Keeping with the flavor of my last post on the Gullwing Sbarro I thought this similar aged take on the classic Benz Gullwing take was nice.
Nowadays you see everything from Dodge Neons to Honda Civics running around with cheap poor quality Lambo style door kits.
The gullwing setup on this Merc is a much more involved project since it involves cutting the roof. When you cut this much metal out of the car you have to add significant reinforcement to maintain a safe body.
Styling Garage, SGS, the company that made the modifications, was well known in the 80s for making dramatic visual upgrades to Mercedes cars.
Many SGS tuned cars were given SGS badges out front and custom body work instead of the three pointed star. This one has some AMG body parts, but looks mostly stock. Inside there is some custom guages and nice wood steering wheel.
Original price on the conversion was the same as the price of the car itself.
This specimen has 40,000 miles, and a seller looking for $15,000. It has new paint, but as you can tell from the wood planks holding the doors up there is some work to be done. Lots of depreciation here for a really unique car.

You can read more about the SEC gullwings over at 1000SEL.com

~Evan

1986 Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.3-16 with 63,000 miles

Clean, low mileage Mercedes 190E sedans are getting harder to find these days. Even more rare are well looked after examples of the hot version, the 190E 2.3-16 with an engine developed jointly with Cosworth and an available 5 speed manual transmission with dog leg first gear. Before AMG became the in-house tuning arm of Mercedes-Benz, there were several performance sedans to emerge from the manufacturer, most notably the W109 300SEL 6.3, W116 450SEL 6.9 and the legendary Porsche assembled W124 500E/E500. The 190E 2.3-16 and 2.5-16 were part of this high performance history.

This is the holy grail of 190E 2.3-16V cars; all original paint and body panels, no accidents or paintwork EVER. Only 63K documented original miles. Fantastic original cosmetic condition inside and out. Flawless mechanically with everything working including the VDO computer. A 5-speed manual with a smooth and perfect clutch and transmission. She runs strong, looks great, and is in SUCH great shape cosmetically and mechanically; this car needs NOTHING but a new owner.

The 190E 2.3-16 has begun to garner recognition amongst collectors and values have crept up as of late. Still, no matter how clean, $17,900 seems optimistic, given that mint C43 AMG models with a V8 can be had for similar, if not less money. True, the C43 is a different animal, but when NADA is listing a high retail shy of $12,000 for this car, one would think this kind of vehicle would maybe pull $14-15k max. Still, there is no denying that this is an exceptional example of an important piece of Mercedes-Benz history.

-Paul

Mercedes 6.9 powered Sbarro Gullwing

The seller has had this listed a couple times on eBay and it hasn’t sold. It is listed as a 1976, but while that may be how it was registered I’m certain this car was converted in the early 1980s. It is riding on the W126 500SEC based chassis, not as the seller states the 116.  The engine is the 6.9 liter out of the 116 based 450SEL 6.9, though. (edit: This model is on the W116 chassis, unlike the 5.0 liter versions that came on the W126.)

While this one is an automatic, these cars were available with a 5 speed manual and with a bi-turbo engine 5.0. When new these cars started at 250,000 German marks.

The Swiss based Franco Sbarro company still does business on high end vehicles.

The seller might want to go with more classic rims and include more information and pictures of the engine bay if they want to get anything close to the $90,000 ask price.

UPDATE

At first look this indeed looks like a W126 chassis vehicle. This has the W116 dash, something I easily recognize from my days of 6.9 ownership, and distinctive U.S. market 116 servo climate control center console, something my 6.9 didn’t have being grey market.

Two sources I used in digging up some info, Customizing and Tuning Mercedes by Heitz and Neff and Extraordinary Automobiles by Vann and Asaria both list Sbarro as using 500SEC W126 chassis as the basis for these conversions, calling it first the Shahin 1000 and then the 500 Portes Papillon Gullwing. It turns out they did use 116 chassis parts when using the 6.9 liter engine as opposed to the 5.0 or the 5.0 twin turbo option. Apparently the 6.9 motor was not available with the twin turbo option. It was one or the other, though who knows, money could lead companies like this to do strange things for customers.

There is also some wonderful additional photos and information available over at 1000sel.com and this Sbarro Shahin website which quotes directly from the Vann book and uses the same photos from that book.

~Evan