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Re: E30 M3 vs. M-B 190E 2.3-16 (archive)

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Posted by Gabe Roy on December 06, 2001 at 14:20:42:

In Reply to: Re: E30 M3 vs. M-B 190E 2.3-16 posted by Barry Robinson on December 06, 2001 at 13:32:12:

Considering buying either one, need some inputs..... Thx.

Hold on are you talking about just a MB 190e 2.3-16 OR the Evo? Assuming you're talking about the 2.3 liter versions...the MB 190e 2.3-16 just about looks like any other 190e, which is plain and outdated. The seats are far from supportive and the auto box sucks. It is a nice car but far from a sports car in my opinion. The M3 on the other hand is better in all aspects. It's fast, it handles well, it's luxurious, aggressive looking and a born race car. Not as rare as the 2.3-16 but much more desirable.

I own both an 86 190E 2.3-16 and an 88 M3, and have had them both for years. Both are excellent cars. The 190E is probably a better built car in terms of overall strenght. The steering is not as precise, but the brakes are fully as good as the M3. The engine is more torquey, but the out and out acceleration is not quite as good; but it is respectable for sure. The handling is really top notch; there is very little to choose for road work in day to day driving. The amenities for both cars are good. The 190 is a little nicer appointed, but the M3 dash is better (as is the trip computer). The M3 is probably a wee bit better from a handling perspective -- more uncompromising. But the 190 is not far behind. Note that my car has the 5-speed; I cannot imagine an auto in that car, since it would really adulterate its performance. You would not be be bad off with either car. If forced to keep only one, it would be extremely difficult to make a decision. Both are fine, and each share BMW and M-B club stickers. I am very lucky to own 2 such unique cars. To argue over which is better is fully as futile an exercise as to argue over whether a blonde is more attractive than a brunette! Both are superbly nice cars, even today. If you can get either one, you will be pleased.

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