1 Oct 1991
By CHRIS HARRIS
Sales of Mercedes-Benz cars were mauled by the severe recession of the early '90s, so the company stripped out its ageing 190E 1.8, slashed over $20,000 off the price and had a huge hit on its hands with the 180E.
It featured power steering, cloth trim, air-conditioning and a four-speed auto transmission... but virtually nothing else.
It lasted until March ’94, when the virtually all-new W202 C-class series took over.