Search For Used Cars


Posted by Glenn Rowswell on 6th February 2020

Welcome to this week’s FC Throwback, where we take a look back at some of our favourite previous feature cars. This week it’s James Brown’s retro-fresh Mercedes 190 from way back in May 2013…

It’s not every day we get a call from a legend like James Brown, so when he got on the blower to tell us about his minty-fresh 190E Merc, we grabbed snapper Si and hit the road to check it out!

James is somewhat of a veteran modder at heart, with a long list of past hits under his belt, including two other Mercs, an Audi A3, an E46 Beemer and a whole load of other slammed motors. Something was missing though, and James still had an itch that had to be scratched. With visions to build his ultimate old school Mercedes, he headed over to speak to his mate Jag from the aptly named, Jags Bodyshop. “I wanted to build one more 190E, but build a decent one with a bit of everything. It was Jag that encouraged me to go out and find one,” explains James.

Finding a Merc of this age in tip-top condition wasn’t going to be easy, but with plans to give the car a full makeover James could afford to go for something a little tatty. After some searching around he picked a fairly battered 190 with a strong engine – the perfect starting point for his project.

The first port of call was to get that tired old bodywork put right. The car was rolled into Jags Bodyshop to have all the panels straightened and tidied up. Wanting to keep the body fairly standard, James opted to go for a full respray in the original Mercedes white. At the same time, the side repeaters and aerial were deleted, along with a touch of smoothing on the bumpers. The old badges and grilles had seen better days, so a new set were ordered and fitted to give the car a factory fresh finish.

With the exterior up to scratch, James focused on sorting out the nasty old insides. The whole lot was stripped out and binned, before a full Oxblood leather interior was modified and fitted. The old carpet was taken up and dyed black to give it a new lease of life. A simple Pioneer headunit and uprated components fill the cockpit with the sweet symphony of soul.

James has had more wheels than he’s had number one hits! As is the case for most of us, he couldn’t just settle on the first set he got. Instead, the Merc has been through its fair share of hoops before it finally settled on these Falken wrapped staggered 8.5x17in and 10x17in Dare DRS rims. Dealing up a respectable dose of lows are a set of customised 60mm lowering springs and uprated, shortened shocks.

James and the ‘YES YES’ crew at Jags Bodyshop have restored a classic and kept it classy thank to a few subtle mods. Jazzy work fellas!


Full re-spray in original white, smoothed side repeaters, aerial and bumper, tinted rear lights, orange front indicators, new OEM grille and badges

60mm springs with 3 coils cut on the fronts and 2.5 off the rears, uprated and shortened shocks all round, Dare DRS wheels with gold bolts 8.5x17in fronts, 10x17in rears, Falken 195/40×17 tyres front and 215/40×17 tyres rear

Full Oxblood leather interior including parcel shelf, seat belts in the rear have been removed, original Mercedes Oxblood mats

Pioneer headunit and component speakers

Words Nick Tuner Photos Si Gray