Modernized Mercedes-Benz 190E Rendering Will Anger Purists

Codenamed W201, the precursor to the Mercedes-Benz C-Class line of compact executive sedans entered production in 1982 after eight years of research and development to the tune of two billion German marks. That’s more than two billion dollars in today’s money, which explains the brand’s industry-leading build quality and reliability during that bygone epoch.
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Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Modernized Mercedes-Benz 190E rendering by The Sketch MonkeyMercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)Mercedes-Benz 190 (W201)
Fast forward to the present day, and Merc is nothing more than a shadow of its former self. The latest safety recall comes to mind, a callback that’s directly connected to the Three-Pointed Star’s worsening build quality. To make a long story short, 2020 and 2021 models are recalled due to improper bonding of the rear windshield to the tailgate during assembly.

This kind of issue brings up memories of the 190 series, which also happens to be one of the prettiest road-going Mercs of all time. It’s not beautiful in the same way a Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta Lusso is, but very attractive in its sharp-edged simplicity. Italian designer Bruno Sacco and Peter Pfeiffer are credited with the minimalist styling of the W201, which is considered a golden standard by junior and senior automotive designers even today.

If your dream car is a low-mileage 190E with period-correct everything, the featured video may not be to your liking because pixel artist Marouane Bembli uglifies the car with modern styling traits. From the front bumper to the front grille, headlamps, B-pillars, side profile, mirrors, door handles, and the alloy wheels, not much of the original remains at the end of the video.

Better known as The Sketch Monkey, the Photoshop wizard received a very telling comment on YouTube. Gustav Mozumder writes: “I like almost all your designs, but honestly, this has to be the worst you’ve made so far.”

Beauty is certainly in the eye of the beholder, and we also have to remember that no 190E has been harmed while penning this polarizing design study.

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