Date registered: Aug 2002
Vehicle: '85 2.3-16 '99 C280 '11 GLK350
Location: Scottsdale, Arizona, USA
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RE: sourcing photos of DTM 190E 2.3-16 cars
The 2.3-16 started as a Mercedes concept to re-enter international racing via the rally circuit and was originally designed to be a 320HP motor. With the ascent of Audi Quattro, Mercedes junked the rally project and recast the 2.3-16 as a sport sedan. Before it's official introduction at the 1984 Frankfurt Auto Show, it was sent to the Nardo track in Italy, where it broke decades old endurance records. Mercedes also sponsored a celebrity race between former and current F1 drivers in the 2.3-16 at the re-opened Nurburgring circuit, where Senna finished first.
The 2.3-16 was fielded by "privateers" not the factory and in 1986, the AMG sponsored team scored two DTM victories with the 2.3-16. In 1988, the AMG 2.3-16 scored 4 DTM victories. In 1989, Mercedes decided that the success with the 2.3-16 was encouraging enough to get back into circuit racing and partnered with AMG.
Mercedes, in 1989, introduced the purpose built Evo, with 502 units to qualify for the DTM and changing the engine to 2.5L to take advantage of the new displacment limit in DTM. AMG was hired to manage the "factory" teams and scores 7 DTM wins.
In 1990, the Evo II replaced the Evo. Again, only 502 units were built and Mercedes had no problem selling them all.
None of the 2.5-16 cars were ever directly sold in North America, including the Evo or Evo II, probably due to marketing and emission issues. All Evo and Evo II's were LHD, originally made in "blauschwartz" blue/black metallic and featured 4 wheel adjustable height suspensions. The engines in the Evos are specific to the car, not just a 2.5-15, and feature different pistons, con rods, cams, bearings, crank, electronics as well as upgraded brakes, suspension and of course, the bodyworks.