Here's How Good The '80s Mercedes' In That Song You Keep Hearing On The Radio Actually Is

Photo: MotorWeek/YouTube

If you have functioning ears, you’ve heard “I’m a 90s Baby In My 80s Mercedes” blaring from a speaker somewhere, inundating your mind with praise for a particular Mercedes 380 SL. The question is: does that car deserve praise? Here’s a classic Motor Week review to tell us the answer.

Here’s the song, “80s Mercedes” by Maren Morris, a song I’m not even going to pretend I’m not jamming to at this very moment. Don’t judge me.

In the song, Morris opens up with a few words on reliability and ride quality, saying “[The Mercedes] Still runs good, built to last. Moves like a hula girl on the dash.”


She then continues her Car Review Disguised As A Music Video, talking about what it’s like living with the 380 SL everyday, saying “She ain’t made for practicality,” and ultimately ends by noting the car’s street presence, saying “Turning every head, hell I ain’t even trying.”

Let’s see how that compares to a review from seasoned auto journalist, John Davis:

In a lot of ways, Morris was spot on. MotorWeek’s John Davis agrees that the car isn’t exactly the most practical even if it does have a usable trunk, saying the interior is “wide, if short,” and that there’s “not quite enough legroom” despite there only being a package tray behind the front seats. He also mentions the car’s “low” fuel economy of 17 MPG city and 22 highway.

As for ride quality, Davis says the 380 SL is “smooth,” which may or may not mean that it “moves like a hula girl on the dash.” To be honest, I have no clue.

As for Morris’s words on reliability and street presence, she and John Davis are in total agreement. Here’s what Davis says:

There’s probably no more sturdy, distinctive, yet conservative looking car on the road today than this bright red ego trip. And it was a journey that most of us will never forget.


Damn, who knew Maren Morris could review cars like a boss? I for one, am all for more songs like this, though it’d be nice if she mentioned the car’s tendency to oversteer, and also its excellent brakes that only take 99 feet to stop from 55 MPH.

Maybe she’ll include that info in her next song.

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David Tracy

Writer, Jalopnik. 1979 Jeep Cherokee Golden Eagle, 1985 Jeep J10, 1948 Willys CJ-2A, 1995 Jeep Cherokee, 1992 Jeep Cherokee auto, 1991 Jeep Cherokee 5spd, 1976 Jeep DJ-5D, totaled 2003 Kia Rio