1986 Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.3-16

The more I stare at the 2.3-16, the more I realize just how right Mercedes-Benz got it with the design of this car. The starting point was already a good one. The stock 190E, with its restrained, angular good looks and taut lines, brought Mercedes’s design language out of the 70s and firmly into the 80s. But the flared wheel arches, revised valences and rear deck spoiler found on the 2.3-16 turn the staid W201 into a car that looks ready to go racing. Which it did, first as a rally car and, when that didn’t work out, at the DTM. Power came from a version of the M102 2.3 liter four pot engine – later enlarged to 2.5 liters in the European market – breathed on by British tuning company Cosworth. But despite the looks and pedigree, the 2.3-16 has never attracted the same kind of attention or following as its obvious competitor, the E30 M3. The market for these is pretty spotty. They don’t appear very frequently and when they do, many of them have been battered and broken by neglectful owners. Still, every now and again a really nice one pops up.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1986 Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.3-16 on eBay

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1992 Mercedes-Benz 190E 3.2 AMG

One of the first cars to be produced following the official merger between AMG and Mercedes-Benz was the 190E AMG 3.2. These cars came with an aggressive bodykit, giving the W201 a wedge-shaped profile reminiscent of the infamous W124 Hammer, and an enlarged version of the M103 six cylinder motor, bored out to 3.2 liters to produce about 234 hp. Only around 200 of these were made, so the chances of finding one today are slim. However, for a time AMG continued to offer an à la carte menu of upgrades for Mercedes customers to choose from. As a result, a number of W201s were specified with an idiosyncratic mixture of AMG styling and performance parts. This 190E for example, for sale near Stuttgart in Germany, combines an almost bone stock exterior with an AMG-modified motor, making for the ultimate sleeper.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1992 Mercedes-Benz 190E AMG 3.2 on Mobile.de

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1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E

As followers of my posts will know, I love cars that conceal their heightened performance behind austere exterior styling. The 500E is a particular favorite of mine. Around 1,500 of these were imported to the US between 1991 and 1994. Based on the W124 chassis E-class, the “wolf in sheep’s clothing” was the product of a joint venture between Mercedes-Benz and Porsche. The chassis would pass back and forth between the two manufacturers as it was assembled: the car got beefier brakes from the SL, upgraded suspension, a wider track and a glorious 5.0 liter V8 motor. A 0-60 MPH sprint time of about 5.5 seconds, top speed of 160 MPH and total power output of around 322 hp might not sound all that impressive now. But those were very respectable numbers for the time, especially for such a large sedan. By the mid-2000s, the 500E had become somewhat overlooked, passed over by many in favor of the BMW M5. But in the last five years there has been a resurgence of interest in these cars. Values have begun to climb as a result.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E on eBay

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1990 Mercedes-Benz 300SEL

Buying a high mileage car can be a bit scary, even if it’s a Mercedes with a reputation for longevity. Odometer readings can have a profound psychological effect on our perception of a car’s health (and worth), making people leery of high mileage cars. But in truth, at a certain stage in a car’s life, maintenance history and upkeep become far more important than any number on the dash. This is particularly true of the W126. A low mileage car that has been sitting is liable to cause you more problems than a high mileage one that has been driven and cared for by a meticulous owner. The upshot is that if you shop around and choose wisely, you can score a bargain on a high mileage car. This 300SEL, for example, has 286k miles on the odometer and a cheap price tag attached. Offered for sale by a knowledgeable and friendly Benzworld contributor, it offers a budget friendly entry point into W126 ownership backed up by plenty of maintenance history.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1990 Mercedes-Benz 300SEL on Benzworld

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1989 Mercedes-Benz 300SE


Time for another of my wistful W126 posts. Although it’s generally seen as less desirable than the V-8 powered 420SEL and the 560SEL, I think the short wheelbase 300SE remains the hidden gem in the W126 lineup (though not for much longer if I keep posting them, I guess.) It’s not quick off the line, but that’s sort of besides the point. These are for cruising along on the interstate at 70MPH in quiet comfort, and a six cylinder model will do that just as well as a V8 while returning slightly better gas mileage (maybe 20MPG on the highway, if babied). There’s nothing quite like the way these feel. When the door shuts with a satisfying thunk like only a 1980s Mercedes door can, and you slide yourself into the helm and stare down the long hood to see the three pointed star at the end, you feel richer than your true bank balance suggests. It’s quite intoxicating.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Mercedes-Benz 300SE on eBay

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Feature Listing: 1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E

The term “Q-ship” is an antiquated phrase dating from the WWII era. Originally used to refer to merchant ships carrying concealed weaponry, among car enthusiasts it’s been repurposed to describe fast, brawny, and exotic sedans that hide their performance beneath conservatively styled exteriors. German manufacturers excel at producing these kinds of cars, and while the E28 M5 might have been the OG “wolf in sheep’s clothing,” the 500E may be the more interesting. The product of a collaboration between Mercedes-Benz and Porsche, and based on the confidence-inspiring W124 chassis, it got a 5.0 liter V8 motor making 326 hp, beefier brakes taken from the R129 SL, upgraded suspension, a wider track and Recaro bucket seats. The saga of assembly of these beasts was a heroic undertaking; Porsche had the capacity on its dormant 959 production line, so a deal was struck where bare chassis were loaded at Daimler-Benz in Unterturkheim and shipped across town to Porsche in Zuffenhausen. There, the revised and widened fenders were mated with the R129 500SL 16-inch wheels and brakes. Porsche also installed the all-aluminum V8. Mercedes-Benz then repatriated the partially complete cars to paint them, but Porsche completed finally assembly. Around 10,000 were completed in this back-and-forth manner.

Sold between 1991 and 1994/5, the 500E could make the 0-60 MPH dash in under 6 seconds and topped out at a limited 155 MPH. Those were very respectable numbers for the time, especially given the size of the car. From the outside, the 500E was virtually indistinguishable from an ordinary W124, the flared fenders and slightly lower stance being the only tell-tale signs.

Year: 1993
Model: 500E
Engine: 5.0 liter V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 66,300 mi
Price: $39,500

1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E, 66,629 Original Miles, 4 Owners From New, Perfect Running Condition

VIN: WDBEA36E4PB886196

This 1993 500E is fantastic example of one of the most important Mercedes Benz models produced and represents an era of collaboration between Mercedes-Benz and Porsche cars that will never be seen again.

The condition of this car is very original and very well presented. The car shows very few signs of age and has 66,300 miles on the odometer. I am the fifth owner from new, but the CarFax is a little confusing on that point, as two of the owners were brothers and sold the car back and forth to each other. In order to document this, I’m including the CarFax to document the mileage, service, and owners.

This car still retains every option available on a 500E at the time, including:

BODY:

This 500E wears its factory correct and original paint, which is in very nice condition. All of the body panels are ripple, dent, and rust free and don’t appear to have had any sort of body or accident damage.

The glass and seals are in excellent condition and there are no leaks evident. The windshield was replaced last year with a factory ORIGINAL windshield, after a stone chip and crack necessitated the replacement.

The body trim, including the aluminum, and rubber, is in good condition. No trim has been replaced, nor has it needed to be, on the car. It has all been preserved and cared for properly over the years.

This car also has the very rare and sought after European head lamps AND tail lamps installed. The American market head lamps and tail lamps will also be included with the sale.

INTERIOR:

The interior is trimmed in the original black leather. The seating areas are in beautiful condition, with no rips, tears, or wear evident. The door panels are also in the same condition. The wood trim is also in very good condition and not in need of any type of repair. The carpet is also original and looks perfect.

All of the accessories, including the climate control are in perfect working condition. The stereo head has been replaced, and works perfectly with all of the factory speakers. If you you’re looking for the original factory radio, they are very easy to find on eBay and comparatively inexpensive.

All of the windows power up and down and work perfectly, as does the sliding roof. The trunk is in very nice condition, the trunk covering is in excellent condition with no rips, tears, or missing pieces, and the spare tire and jack, and associated tools are accounted for and in very nice condition.

UNDERCARRIAGE:

The underside of the car is exactly what a 66,000 mile car should look like that was well taken care of, garaged, and not driven in the salt. Again, it is very solid and very well preserved, with no evidence of any accident damage. I couldn’t include all of the photos of the undercarriage in the ad, so if you’d like to see a complete set, please contact me and I will email them to you.

ENGINE and ENGINE COMPARTMENT:

The powerplant in this Mercedes is the original V-8 engine. It is completely original and as you can see from the photos, very well preserved. All aspects of the motor are in perfect working order, and the compression ratio is exactly where it should be.

The engine bay is completely original, with all components in operational condition. Every detail of the engine compartment is “Mercedes-Benz Correct” and well preserved. There is some very minor wear to certain painted surfaces due to age, but overall, I don’t think you’ll find one in better condition.

All engine and drivetrain maintenance is up to date, including the following services:

-oil and filter change

-air filter replacement

-installation of new fuel filter

-engine coolant

-installation of new drive belts

-lubrication of entire chassis

I have also had the following work performed on the car in the last few months:

-Replacement of the right rear hydro-pneumatic shock (these shocks, which usually last past 150,000 miles before replacement, were checked and tested, only one in need of repair).

-Removal and replacement of rear lower ball joint, right side outer. This service also include the full suspension fluid flush and fill service).

-Removal, reseal, and installation of the power steering fluid reservoir, which included related seals and gasket replacement, with fluid flush and fill service.

-Removal and replacement of the center steering link, which included both tie rod assemblies and steering dampner replacement with steering toe adjustment.

-Replacement of the transmission cooling hose.

-Replacement of the transmission shift linkage bushing.

I also have a host of spare service and replacement parts which will be included with the sale. They are all original Mercedes-Benz parts or OEM Mercedes-Benz suppliers. Included are parts such as filters, belts, wiper blades, etc. as well as more technical spares.

TRANSMISSION:

The automatic transmission in this car is in perfect working order and functions as a 66,000 mile car should. It is the original transmission to the car.

TIRES, WHEELS, and BRAKES:

The tires are in very nice condition and are not in need of replacement at this time. They and are the correct and original size replacement (Michelin Pilots) for the 1993 500E. There are also two additional new Michelin Pilots included with the sale of the car. One is installed on the spare wheel of the car, and one is included loose and un-mounted.

The wheels are the original Mercedes wheels, and are in excellent condition. They are in very nice condition as you can see in the photos.

The entire braking system has been gone through to ensure every part works as it should. All rotors, pads, and seals have been replaced and brake fluid flushed.

OVERALL DRIVING IMPRESSIONS:

This 500E runs and drives as should – It’s barely broken in! The 8 cylinder powerplant runs and accelerates smoothly and very quickly and the transmission shifts as it should.

The car drives around town and on the open road with no squeaks, creaks, or rattles. It has had all of the necessary service recently performed including oil-change, tune up, installation of new battery, and transmission and differential service. It needs absolutely nothing to drive, show, and enjoy. All of the mechanical aspects of the car work as they should.

PLEASE NOTE:

This 500E still retains all of its original or N.O.S. components! This means the engine, transmission, rear end, etc. are original or correct to the car. All of the numbers, markings, etc., are correct. THIS CAR HAS NEVER BEEN MODIFIED IN ANY WAY! It is an original and very special car that, as evidenced by the low mileage and condition, has been driven very sparingly and properly cared for during the last 23 years. If you’ve never driven a 500E of this period, you are in for a treat with this one!

If you are serious about purchasing this vehicle, I encourage you to come, take a look, and drive it. I can also provide you with additional photos of any specific part you have questions about.

You or your mechanic are also welcome to put the car on a lift and perform any drivetrain inspection you wish, including a compression check.

I am always looking for new cars and motorcycles to add to my collection and have several cars including a 1969 Mercedes-Benz 280 SL and a 1965 Jaguar E-Type convertible as well as motocross and enduro machines for sale, including early Maico machines as well as Gilera and Can-Am motocross and enduro machines. Please contact me if you are interested or have something interesting for sale.

Contact: 630-202-7357

This particular example presents wonderfully in 199 Pearl Black over a black leather interior, a very desirable color combination. The paint looks to be in great condition, body panels are said to be straight and true, and the interior looks like it has barely been used. The exterior has been tidied up by the addition of European-spec headlights and taillights, a neat upgrade. All electrical accessories are said to work and, with the exception of the aforementioned lights and an aftermarket radio, the car is otherwise in stock and original form. Some recent maintenance has been performed on the suspension; the car is said to need nothing else except a new driver and looks the part.

Overall, this looks like a lovely example of a classic and quite rare super sedan. The 500E may no longer be able to outmatch much newer cars, but it’s an unusual piece of Mercedes-Benz history that is sure to reward the contemporary driver. For some time, these were neglected by the market and could be had from prices somewhere in the mid-teens. But prices have begun to soar as they’re becoming increasingly sought after and harder to find. The price on this one is strong, but I think it’s reflective of the excellent condition on show.

– Craig

1990 Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.5-16

Last week I wrote up a tidy looking 190E 2.3-16, the boxy, 80s DTM-racing inspired version of the W201 from Mercedes that has never really gained the same kind of attention as its obvious competitor, the E30 M3. Perhaps that is changing, as more of these come to market in respectable shape. The general consensus among enthusiasts, however, seems to be that these cars are neither desirable nor fast enough to merit the higher price tags we’re beginning to see. (Once upon a time they were firmly in the sub-$10k category, whereas now sellers seem to want the mid teens and up for non-basket case examples.) But maybe the skeptics will be won over by a an imported 2.5-16 like this one?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1990 Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.5-16 on eBay

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1986 Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.3-16

The 2.3-16 is more than just a W201 in a fancy bodykit. Developed by Mercedes-Benz to go rallying, it was redeployed in the DTM instead when it became clear that it stood no chance against the Audi Quattro. Powered by a willing four cylinder, 16v motor with a head provided by British racing firm Cosworth, it has nonetheless struggled to move out from underneath the shadow of the E30 M3. While the M3 has now attained legendary status amongst enthusiasts, with eye-watering prices to match, the 190E has rather languished. True, it’s not quite as fun or as fast as the M3 (especially in US specification). It’s not that fast at all, in fact: many modern day, entry level cars will pull away from it quite easily. Still, these 190E Cosworths are great  because they retain all of the admirable qualities of the W201 (a confidence inspiring, over-engineered chassis, indestructible build quality) while dialing up the fun.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1986 Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.3-16 on Atlanta, GA Craigslist

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1989 Mercedes-Benz 560SEL

The nice thing about the W126 platform S-class is that you can still find a car suit to suit every budget. A quick look on local Craigslist throws up several examples in various states of repair for a few grand. And some of them look pretty clean. But of course, as the old adage goes, there’s nothing as expensive as a cheap Mercedes. And cars at that end of the market, particularly the V8s, are likely to need some costly repairs at some point or another, just as a matter of course. But what if you were in the enviable position of having an unlimited budget and a desire for a W126 in almost brand-new, showroom condition? What kind of money would you have to spend, and what would it get you? Perhaps this mint condition, range-topping 560SEL with an incredibly low 39k miles on the odometer is the answer.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Mercedes-Benz 560SEL on eBay

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1986 Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.3-16

1Built in conjunction with British engineers Cosworth to rally before the Audi Quattro debuted (and siphoned instead into the DTM when Mercedes realized it stood no chance), the 190E 2.3-16 marries the handsome lines and tank-like build quality of the W201 chassis with a race-tuned four pot engine and a muscular and aerodynamically purposeful bodykit. We’ve featured a number of 16 valvers on the site lately and I’m beginning to wonder if there has (finally) been an uptick in the market for these cars. It does seem as though there are more nice examples out there for sale with every passing year, in contrast to the raft of rotted out and abused ones that used to dot Craigslist not too long ago.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1986 Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.3-16 on Hemmings.com

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