1990 Mercedes-Benz 190 e 2.6 from North America


A solid, timeless functional car


When I purchased it the power roof was not functioning, as well as the right rear window.

I also feel a pronounced shudder at speed. I believe this to be a flex joint issue.

General Comments:

The car was an impulse purchase, it was advertised as mint and upon inspection I had to agree. It came from northern California with absolutely no rust anywhere, and the paint is original. The paint quality is incredible.

The interior is functional with no gimmickry, the "leather" upholstery is very comfortable, however after running the VIN on a Russian Mercedes website and finding out about all the options it came with, I discovered the upholstery was MB tex, a synthetic leather, but apparently it wears superior to leather and so I am not complaining. It sorely lacks a cup-holder however.

The engine when opened up sounds amazing and has more than enough grunt. However you need to play with the throttle to get underway quickly as it starts in 2nd gear. When I first drove it I never properly floored it, so I was pleasantly surprised when I did.

The turning circle is the smallest I have even experienced, and it is a breeze to maneuver. All in all a fine car so far, lovely classic lines, a big car feel in a compact package.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 20th March, 2009

21st Aug 2013, 17:55

I fully agree with all points. The info about starting in 2nd gear is a surprise, I had no reason to believe that.

1990 Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3 from Australia and New Zealand


A great car, superbly built before advanced electronics


Radiator sprung a leak at 130k.

Water leak in the boot, which took forever to locate. Had to take out the rear window. Small hole bottom left corner. Now dry.

Query - When braking and slowing to a near stop, it will sometimes stall. Checked by auto elec, auto trans and mechanic with no luck.. Idle control valve replaced; still same. Any help appreciated.

General Comments:

This is an amazing car. Handles very well with 16x7 mags and tyres, and it's a pleasure to drive on long trips.

Can cruise effortlessly at 130k's all day.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 22nd October, 2007

24th Oct 2007, 00:47

Re: stalling when stopping, check the vacuum hoses in the engine component. A vacuum leak can cause that.

8th Apr 2010, 00:14

Over voltage protection relay behind battery faulty, or CO tower adjustment.

1990 Mercedes-Benz 190 190e 2.6 from North America


Once a Mercedes, always a Mercedes


E-brake not longer works.

A/C needed recharging.

Cruise control works intermittently.

Heater control valve leaks intermittently.

General Comments:

I love this car! It hugs the road and is very communicative; a true driver's vehicle. Somewhat slow off the line since the automatic is programmed to start in second gear (unless I floor the accelerator for 2-1 kick-down/kick in the pants), it has unbelievably long legs on the highway, showing its Autobahn pedigree. In this respect, I need to be careful, since this car could land me into trouble with the authorities. On the highway, it will cruise at 145km/h without any trouble. I personally took it up to 190km/h and it was still pulling and had a fair fit of pedal travel remaining, but that was the limit on the T-rated tires I was running at the time. I figure it could go to 215-220 km/h before the engine would run out of revs. More than enough to get my license suspended if I get caught!

The interior is nicely-appointed in leather and textured plastic that looks and feels a cut above the rest even 17 years later. The heated seats are a real treat on cold mornings. The car feels like a tomb inside, isolating everyone from the harsh world outside and imparting a sense of invincibility to the driver. If this was the entry level Benz of 17 years ago, what are they like today? I am very eager to find out. Now if only I had 50-grand lying around someplace...

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th December, 2006

22nd Dec 2006, 03:08

Mercs are very poor quality wise today, yours is one of the 'old school' that were real quality!

22nd Dec 2006, 08:51

I totally agree, although the 190 doesn't have the best reliability record according to the posters here. But, overall, older Mercedes were a sure thing as far as being dependable.

Personally, I couldn't see owing a modern Mercedes past its warranty. With all the electronic gizmos and questionable advances built in there is simply too much to go wrong that will cost too much to fix.

13th Mar 2008, 15:49

I have a 1989 E190 and at 60mph its at 3,000 rpm..

Is this okay?

Seems a little hight.

Thanks, mike.

29th Jan 2010, 16:39

I agree... The 190 2.6 is very strong in every sense.

I had a beautiful 190E 2.6 1988 that I had to sell a few years ago, and I purchased a 1990 Nissan Maxima... big mistake! Not that the Maxima is a bad car, quite the opposite, but I surely miss the Benz.

21st May 2010, 11:58

As the owner of a 1990 190E 2.0 litre with only 29200km's on the clock. I can vouch for the solid, well built and reliable nature of this car. It has to be one of the easiest cars to drive and still runs like a dream (well it's basically still new) even after 20 years!