Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16 Record Galore Anniversary

Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16 10 photos
Photo: Daimler AG
Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16
Between 11 and 21 August 1983, one month before the official launch of the production version at the Frankfurt Motor Show, three pre-production prototypes of the Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16 “Cosworth” were establishing no less than twelve speed and distance records on the Nardo high-speed track in Italy.
The most coveted record was the one where a distance of 50,000 kilometers (31,068 miles) was covered by the first Mercedes-Benz compact executive in just 201 hours, 39 minutes and 43 seconds. For the odd facts aficionados, the Earth's circumference is “only” 40,075 kilometers (24,901 miles). Apart from this, the 190 E 2.3-16 set two more records over a distance of 25,000 kilometers (15,534 miles) and nine more records in its class.

During the runs on the 12.6-km circular high speed test track daytime temperatures of about 40 degrees Celsius made the cars' interiors to heat at more than 50 degrees Celsius, making both the drivers and the vehicles handle even more strain.

Apart from the deletion of the radiator fan and a few aerodynamical modifications all three cars had completely stock specifications, but the aero tweaks were sufficient to propel the cars to a 250 km/h (155 mph) top speed.

Another fun fact about the high for the time top speed is that the fuel consumption during the feat was just a bit more than 22 liters per 100 kilometers (10.7 mpg). Also, keep in mind that the cars were ran at top speed for days (and nights) on end.

Here are the basic technical specifications of the Cosworth-tuned Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.3-16, built from 1983 until 1988:

Engine: Four-cylinder petrol engine with 4 valves per cylinder
Displacement: 2299 cubic centimeters
Power output: 185 hp (136 kW)
Top speed: 230 km/h - 143 mph (ECE version), from September 1985: 225 km/h - 140 mph (with catalyst 220 km/h - 137 mph)
Acceleration 0-100 km/h: 7.5 seconds (ECE version), from September 1985: 8.2 seconds (with catalyst 8.5 seconds)
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About the author: Alex Oagana
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Alex handled his first real steering wheel at the age of five (on a field) and started practicing "Scandinavian Flicks" at 14 (on non-public gravel roads). Following his time at the University of Journalism, he landed his first real job at the local franchise of Top Gear magazine a few years before Mircea (Panait). Not long after, Alex entered the New Media realm with the project.
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