Curbside Classic Mercedes 190E (W201) – Das Beste oder……

13 Мар 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »
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Curbside Classic: Mercedes (W201) – Das Beste oder….Baby!

If the age of cars on the road is creeping it’s difficult to notice in Arlington, the wealthy Columbus, suburb where I unexpectedly this Mercedes 190E.  My neither accurately represent the number of late model SUVs which have cars like this in the nor do justice to its stunning condition. only 50,000 miles on the it’s easy to imagine 1984 or 1985 model to one of the shrewd, well-heeled seniors leaving the area and was quite its owner’s final nice car

Many such people in the have left behind preserved homes over the decade, which are often in favor of garish makeovers by the young families buying if not razed altogether to build oversized houses on their now lots.  In a similar fashion, the value of this functional, and now Benz regularly goes  Let’s not commit a similar sin in what an important car it was, for the marque, and the industry as a whole.

within Daimler-Benz as W201, six were spent creating the 190, using an egalitarian to engineering, ensuring that the degree of detail and thorough that distinguished Mercedes’ models went into newest, least expensive Making the most of this the company applied the fresh that debuted in the “Baby to subsequent redesigns of more models.  This trickle-up prevented the car from becoming an adventure in the vein of GM’s compacts (were GM wise to use that car’s aluminum blocks, independent rear and unit bodies in their mid and models, Mercedes might had a very different history).

What also makes car important-besides the introduction of new technology would ultimately receive in the company’s more expensive its styling.  It defines its maker’s sensibility as practiced under stylist Bruno Sacco indeed, is mentioned as his favorite Sacco succeeded Friedrich as head of design in the early but remained confined both by the evolutionary styling framework and by gestational periods for upcoming So, while his name may have attached to the W123 and W126, it was only with the W201 his hand was free to pen the shape he wanted.

What he and his team is by all accounts a successful design, at once athletic and modern conceding any bit of poise or dignity.  is clear influence of the C111 concept car, with planar surfaces, a distinct shape and obvious attention to  This is most evident in the tapering edges of the short, decklid and in the frames of the flush windows.

At the same time it was very new looking when with the company’s previous it remained appropriate to the era and maintained its image years later. was suitably pleased as Sacco in charge of styling well the ‘90s, with the attractive highly flawed) W210 his last car.  Only Mercedes introduced the W221 S-class) did we see a genuine break styling in Sacco’s idiom

its success in design, however, the car to make a splash in the United While the same styling and informed W124’s success in the market, the W201 itself was a of both its marketing position and sophistication.

For starters, its dynamic excellence was too to appreciate.  Mercedes had always stability and control in high-speed rough conditions over agility or comfort.  In the days stability and traction control, achieving this was a considerable With the aim of maintaining traditional traits in a compact package, recirculating ball steering, fed a gigantic wheel, remained with disciplined damping.  As other models, a long soft bushings, generous travel and amply padded, seats were used to the edge off the ride.  On sixteen models, the addition of hydropneumatic for the rear axle-previously only on station wagons and high-end models-helped remove whatever remained in the chassis.

At the front MacPherson struts were for the first time, allowing space for powertrain componentry and zone deformation in the new, car.  Additional wheel was provided by generously sized wishbones directly mounted to the using two large bushings.   As was practice for the company, springs mounted separately, inboard of the units, in the front suspension and for the first time, at the rear This more expensive and approach aids in the packaging of allowing greater travel I suspect, reduces potential for bounce by greater leverage to the dampers, several inches outboard of associated springs.

Most the camber and toe changes theretofore with independent rear didn’t affect the car.  of relying on commonly used arms, Mercedes debuted a multilink axle in which control links mounted to a located the rear wheels bushings of varying stiffness. At any within their considerable varying degrees of load be placed upon these to locate the wheels such they always remained to the road surface, irrespective of acting upon the car.  It was a in its time and has become standard today.

Unfortunately, instead of applying the new rear axle’s optimized and resultant greater margin of to allow for sharpen turn-in and throttle adjustability, it was fully to further enhance the brand’s unflappability.  This meant for those who could appreciate approach and afford Mercedes’ the car was very secure and relaxing to in all conditions.  The ultimate result, was less than exciting for the enthusiast, who had his or her choice of more overtly sporting cars the competition.

If chassis design and styling belonged to a machine years ahead of other powertrains reflected early engineering.  Original offerings in the US of a 2.2 liter diesel with 72 in the 190D and a 2.3 liter four in the 190E, with a crossflow head.  As it lacked a turbo, with the 2.2 diesel was glacial, sixty mph coming up in about seconds with either The first-ever fully enclosed compartment earned the 190D the “whispering diesel,” but it remained an for the diesel faithful or the exceptionally as the 2.3 was far from a gas guzzler and, considerably more performance its 113 (eventually 130) horsepower. while torquey and durable, it was a uncharismatic unit, with a rpm redline.  The recalcitrant manual and downshift-averse, hydraulically controlled did the engines no favors.  As the market was fear of fuel shortages manufacturers offered competition was often faster, if less

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Mercedes kept juggling its offerings, betraying its panic the car’s flagging success in the US  A 90 horsepower, 2.5 liter five-cylinder the 2.2 for 1986, accompanied in 1987 by a desirable turbocharged variant 122 hp, which was inexplicably discontinued only one year.  The engine sans turbo, before dropped the 190D from its US altogether in 1990.  The 2.3-liter four, discontinued one earlier, was reintroduced in 1991 in the of lowering the car’s starting having learned very over its two-year sabbatical.

The Cosworth manufactured 2.3-16 arrived in 1986 but was significantly in US form, and with 167 horses, not enough to justify its considerable at 35,000 1986 dollars.  It too was following the 1987 model during which the 158-hp 2.6 six the 260E was shoehorned into the requiring a redesign of the radiator Though seemingly not part of the plan for the 190, it most suited the car’s character, smoothness and a steady, even of power.

Whether the 2.6 was successful in the 190’s reputation for indifferent is less certain.  Mercedes updating the car until its eventual lowering the ride height and lower body cladding for adding ABS and a driver’s airbag for and, in 1992 and 1993, a rare and appealing Sportline for the 2.6, with firmer 205mm wide tires, seat bolters and a faster ratio.  But by the late 1980s, was a host of compelling and more options for less money. constituted the most significant the W201 faced in the US.

This shouldn’t be taken to the 190 didn’t offer its own unique of virtues.  On the contrary, Mercedes a combination of compactness and security no manufacturer offered.  No cars of the bar Audi’s quattros, were as in extreme conditions and even were not as balanced.  The BMW 3-series, nimble and durable, was a rather handler until it was replaced in The Acura Legend wasn’t in the league was as far as dynamics were and it was generally bland.  None of the was as solid or composed over pavement and none were as safe in a crash.  Indeed, if we its powertrains, the 190 really was the car of the future, new standards in safety, handling, and refinement unmatched until the

For American buyers, none of changed the fact that put forth by the car’s athletic and high price remained  By giving buyers what needed, not what they the 190’s attempt to capture affluent American buyers the mark.  It met the goal of bringing virtues to a state of the art compact along with impeccable but in the US, where speeds were and gas was cheaper, it took the company’s and more powerful models for traits to really shine.

The was, on the other hand, a success in Europe, where the of the car’s 1.8 million sales made, and it strongly influenced of the car’s subsequent competition.  1986 80 and 90 models aped the tall, narrow architecture and focus on aerodynamics, high-speed and safety, becoming bland and in the process.  BMW’s class E36 3-series adopted a tall multilink rear axle and shape, looking quite than the coeval E34 and E32.


But while the competition was influenced by Mercedes sought popularity US buyers by cheapening the car’s adopting virtually nothing in the way of technology upon its introduction years later.  If the 190’s versus its rivals was too subtle to it was simply absent in its replacement, the named “C-class.”

I can’t to the success of Mercedes’ sell-out in of profit margins or sales but for savvy observers, it is clear the company has surrendered its position as an juggernaut, beginning with its for the W201 and very similar Their current cars are viable within their classes but no longer advanced to the competition.  The company also to find a design language as as that introduced by this car, with recent being a pastiche of nostalgic and stylistic elements.  Sadly, it all to mind the overwrought McMansions now next to the clean, functional in which this car and its owner likely live.

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interesting



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