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Craziest Mercedes of SEMA ’19

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This one isn’t for Mercedes purists per say. It’s more so for people that really appreciate the details of a proper show car. Thank us later.

Ever dreamed of having a 190 E EVO in your garage? Some of us do on a regular basis. Like most, our initial allure with the chassis came through the popular DTM race series from the 90s. The aggressive body kits and aerodynamics that graced the original Mercedes DTM car left generations of fans enamored with the aesthetic. Tim Lajambe was one of these individuals. However, he wouldn’t end up letting his dreams not turn to reality. Thus, later in life he would end up buying a 190 E EVO I.

Craziest Mercedes of SEMA

He wanted to do the necessary modifications to complete the EVO II package, but decided against it. Lajambe realized he rather take his own path and create his vision of the perfect 190 E. Thus, he “ended up grabbing a regular 190 because I couldn’t bring myself to cut up my EVO and we built this…which is my version of a tribute, street driven DTM car.”

DTM-Inspired V8-Swapped 190E: The Craziest Mercedes at SEMA
Craziest Mercedes of SEMA

Larry Chen and the Hoonigan team got the opportunity to shoot this stunning car, plus we have some of our own photos of the build from our coverage of SEMA 2019. In order to really appreciate a build of this quality, we have to understand what it took to make. Thus, we can start by saying that Lajambe begun gathering parts for this build five years ago. You can believe his vision of the perfect 190 E never left his mind a single day during that time. However, once everything was ready for the build, Lajambe and his team managed to get it done in 7 weeks. During this time, 16 hour days just working on the details was considered normal.

Under the angry exterior this 190 E hosts, a SL 600 subframe was used to widen the chassis. The custom-made body kit it is 6 inches wider front and rear than the stock 190 E. While insane wheel gap worked okay for the race-bred EVO II, this show car couldn’t have any of that. Thus, a modern air strut setup allows the fitment of this 190 E’s custom Fifteen52 wheels to be perfect down to the millimeter. Let’s not forget fat tires front and rear (305mm section width to be exact) is a necessity to complete the DTM look.

DTM-Inspired V8-Swapped 190E: The Craziest Mercedes at SEMA
Craziest Mercedes of SEMA

If you were wondering what exactly this car is suppose to be modeled after, Chen gives us just about the perfect description of what this car is intended to embody: “a race car for the street, crazy horsepower, crazy looks, but still comfortable and has a stereo.”

DTM-Inspired V8-Swapped 190E: The Craziest Mercedes at SEMA
Craziest Mercedes of SEMA

So speaking of crazy horsepower, let’s talk about the powerplant rocketing this 190 E into hyperspace. It is an LS3 block that has received more modification that you could ever imagine. The engine is able to make 700 WHP naturally aspirated and can make up to 1,600 WHP with the twin-turbos. However, Lajambe only plans on running this V8 at a conservative 1000 WHP. Wondering why there isn’t a Mercedes engine in the bay? We’ll directly reference that Lajambe stated “I needed this thing to be as fast as it looks…to get a reliable 1000 horsepower out of it is no problem at all.”

So if factory red Ferrari leather and copious carbon fiber isn’t your thing, this DTM Inspired Twin Turbo V8 Swapped Mercedes 190e probably isn’t for you. Is it the purest resto-mod OEM+ Mercedes build ever? No, far from it. However, we think that this fact doesn’t detract a single ounce of quality from this build. So if you ever get the chance to see something as nice as this in person, be careful, the diffuser strakes look sharp. Really sharp.

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