Despite being a sports model on a sedan base, the 190 SL offered elegant, fluid lines: it resembles a slightly smaller copy of the 300 SL. Displayed at the 1954 New York Auto Show with a prototype body slightly different from the production version, the 190 SL was a 4-cylinder roadster which combined a body style based on the “Ponton” 180 (W 120) with an improved 190 (W 121) sedan chassis.

The 190 SL is equipped with double wishbone front suspension, with a swing axle in the rear (the development of which caused a 15-month delay in the production and delivery of the vehicle), based on a monocoque W 121 platform with its welded uni-body (chassis/body) system. The 115.75 cu.in. in-line 4-cylinder Daimler-Benz M 121 B II engine delivered 105 bhp at 5800 rpm. The overhead camshaft engine was a first in a Mercedes.

Considering its performance, it is hard to realise that the 190 SL is a 4-cylinder automobile. It is very comfortable driving at 80 mph. It can travel 16-20 miles on one gallon of gasoline, which is not bad for a vehicle weighing 3175 lbs.

With a hardtop, leather upholstery and a Becker Mexico radio, the roadster’s price reached 5,750 Dollars in 1961. Considered a very collectable car for investment purposes, recognized and sold through the efforts of Max Hoffman, distributor of Mercedes in the United States, this 190 SL was brought to an auction held in Germany in 1993, driven by its Swedish owner. Purchased the same day by the Museum, it was completely restored in the Museum’s workshop in Istanbul.


  • Make Mercedes-Benz
  • Model 190 SL
  • Model / Body Number W 121 II
  • Body Style Roadster
  • Year 1962
  • Origin Germany
  • Production Total 2,246 (Total 25,881)
  • Passenger Capacity 2



  • Engine Daimler-Benz M121 B II, 4 cyl, In-Line, SOHC, Gasoline, 115.75 cu. inch, 105 bhp, 5800 rpm
  • Bore x Stroke 3.34 x 3.29 inch
  • Transmission Manual, 4-speed, synchro, floor shift
  • Top Speed 108 mph
  • Acceleration 0-60 mph, 11.7 s
  • Body / Frame Steel, uni-body construction
  • Suspension Front Double wishbone, coil springs
    Rear Swing axle, coil springs
  • Electrical System 12 Volt, 56 Ampere
  • Brakes Hydraulic, servo, 4-wheels drum
  • Wheelbase 94.5 inch
  • Overall Length 168.8 inch
  • Overall Width 68.5 inch
  • Overall Height 51.9 inch
  • Shipping Weight 2557 lbs
  • Front / Rear Tread 56.3 inch / 58.1 inch
  • Tires 6.40 x 13 Sport