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Mercedes-Benz C-Class Sedans

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  • I have a chance to buy a MB Kompressor 230 of 2000 model with about 30K miles for considerably below its TMV/KBB price. The reason the price is sweet is that the car has been "CONSUMER RE-PURCHASE" for "NO START CONDITION & FUEL GAUGE". The seller on ebay tells me it has been since repaired by the authorized MB repairshop, and in all likelihood, it was broken fuelguage that misread the empty tank as full, hence "no start condition". The car still has 13 months factory warranty left.
    Two questions:
    1. What would you suggest/advise/recommend to a potential buyer about such "manufacturer-reconditioned" car buying situation?
    2. I want to get it shipped (insured) from Dallas to Omaha. Any good/bad experiences about a used car getting shipped (was it a satisfying experience for anyone here?)

    Thanks a lot in advance!
  • 404c404c Posts: 146
    The other phrase for this is "LEMON TITLE". The question is, did the "no start condition" which by definition must have happened 4 times without the dealer or manufacturer being able to repair it, really get repaired?

    My advice is run, don't walk away from any offer for you to buy a lemon. There are far better things to buy with your money. Like a nice reliable Toyota ;-)
  • Speaking of lemons - has anyone had to deal with this situation?

    I'm currently going through this with a new BMW 325i I just purchased & if I can get my money back, I'm thinking of a C320.

    My car's in the dealer for the 4th time for a fail-safe problem (in 6 weeks of ownership & 1200 miles!)& they are now planning to replace the wiring harness & are waiting for the part to come in from Germany since it's not a US stock item!

    Anyway, the dealer knows he can no longer restore my confidence in this car; how can I get BMW NA to agree too?
  • My 2001 C320 has been having this problem with what I will call stuttering at very slow speeds. Just when you begin to inch forward. They took it in and after 5 attempts to fix it they replaced the torque converter. This actually seemed to fix it. I took the car home, gave it to my wife and she puts the car in reverse to leave the garage and the damn thing goes forward! By the way, I was standing in front of it. Almost got me.

    So I press the wrench button and tell the operator to come get this POS. They do and after a day they tell me the tech forgot to replace the pin that connects the shift lever to the transmission.....oops! They are very lucky I wasn't killed or that it didn't happen in a parking lot.

    I told them my wife informed me that she would never drive the car again and that I wanted a new car. They offered me a 2003 C for like 10K. I said, no thanks.

    Well after a few weeks of playing hardball, looks like I will be getting a new 2003 E320 for about 10k. Alot of money,yes, but 2 years newer and way more car.

    Has anyone else experienced anything like this?
  • I'm buying a C230 in two weeks and I don't know if I should get a 2002 or 2003 model?
    Any suggestions?

    Thanks
  • mbnut1mbnut1 Posts: 403
    If my understanding is correct the motor has been updated for the 2003. Given that the '03 would be a no brainer.
  • 404c404c Posts: 146
    The update of the engine in the 2003 model C 230 K Sportcoupé consists of fitting a 1798 cc engine in place of the former 2295 cc engine.

    The 1798 cc engine is all aluminum, has counter-rotating shafts to smooth it out and gets better fuel economy (6%) than the outgoing model.

    It is also less powerful, and (more importantly) less torquey.

    The 1.8 is listed at 189 HP and the 2.3 has 192.

    The 2.3 engine developed its maximum torque of 280 Nm between 2000 and 4500 rpm.

    The 1.8 engine develops its maximum torque of 260 Nm between 3500 and 4000 rpm.

    So where the 2.3 (which I have) pulls like a train at 2000 rpm in any gear, the newer one will have to be revved harder and shifted more often to make similar progress.

    In absolute terms the speed of the new 1.8 model is only slightly down - it does 0-100 km/h in 8.1 seconds versus 8.0 for the 2.3 L engine. But the way the old engine does this is effortless due to its massively wide torque spread, whereas you'll have to work the new engine a lot harder.

    The specific power of the new M271 engine is well over 100 HP/L and the old one is in the mid 80s. Thus I think there's more "room" to reliably modify the 2.3 for more power if that's your bag. Many long-time Mercedes-Benz mechanics think the old M111 engine is the best one they made in recent times.

    Finally, the new engine is in its first months of production and I would not be surprised to see it suffer from a number of "teething problems". If you want to read more about this engine, go to MBSpy and look under M271 engine series - there's a long press release on it.

    Overall, if this sounds like a vote for the 2.3 L 2002, so be it.
  • 404c404c Posts: 146
    I got the torque range for the 2002 C 230 K wrong - the maximum torque figure is developed between 2500 and 4800 rpm, not 2000 and 4500 rpm, as I wrote above. Sorry about that.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,367
    I've rejoined the MB family, with my 14th in the past 35 years. The pricing on the '02 Cs was too good to pass up, so we bought an '02 C240 from the dealer in Sacramento CA, with the deal as follows:

    MSRP with Automatic, Met Pnt, and C2: $34,525
    Price Paid: $30,025 [$4500 off] plus taxes.

    I feel like we got a good deal, and they still made a couple of hundred bucks on it after holdback. This car was among at least 10 others, and had been around in stock for a long time, so there was absolutely no trouble in striking the deal.

    We needed a comfortable, safe touring car, not a sports sedan. That said, a really basic BMW 325 was an alternative, as well as a base G35, but the combination of ride and silence at speed, not to mention my long relationship with the brand, cinched the deal.

    Incidentally, my research indicated that '03s were already available in SoCal for $600 over invoice with no hassles, and probably less if you wanted to dicker, but we plan on keeping the car long enough that the extra discount on the '02 means more. I do like the new Pewter color for '03, though - ours is Bordeaux red, which is gorgeous to look at but high-mtc to keep up to my standards.

    So, back in the MB saddle again...
  • Given what's available for $30k, you chose very wisely. Suggestion: I have my cars fully detailed once a year (typically in early June at the end of our "rainy season" here in Seattle). Makes routine upkeep of difficult, darker colors much easier; and cleaning engine makes it run cooler.

    BTW, in discussing my engine temp with local mechanics, I've found that MB engines generally run warmer than others. Keeping them clean helps lower it a wee bit.
  • ciracira Posts: 32
    At highway speeds I get a significant amount of vibration through the automatic gear shifter (such that it is uncomfortable to rest my hand on - the vibration is not visible). This just started recently (about 4 months after my purchase). Does anyone else notice this? I am trying to determine if this is normal movement.
  • mbnut1mbnut1 Posts: 403
    Congrads. Sounds like you got a tremendious bargain. Let us know how you like it. I understand completely the phrase back in the saddle again when it comes to Benz's
  • 404c404c Posts: 146
    I would take a guess that your car's engine mounts may be faulty and are therefore allowing additional vibration to penetrate the interior. This is a known problem - with a service bulletin - ask about it at the MB dealer and they'll probably change the engine mounts for you. That should solve the problem.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,111
    While Tooling around on MBUSA's latest iteration of their website, I noticed that there was no Sport Package option to choose on either the C240 or C320 Sedans. Is there no more Sport Package available? I think the 5 spoke wheels coupled with the lower suspension make the C-Class look more aggressive.

    2001 Honda Prelude Type SH/ 2011 BMW 328xi / 2011 Honda Pilot EX-L w/ Navigation

  • I've said this before, and now again in response to nyccarguy's post: unlike the BMW Sport package, which makes a significant difference, I do not think the Sport adds much if anything to the C ride. I'm not sure I even like its look, and would prefer to spend my money on AMG wheels. For this reason, I think it wise for MB to end it as an unnecessary concession to keep up with the Bimmers.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,367
    ...for what it's worth, I've always thought the Sport Pkg was a waste...but to each his own...
  • ahostahost Posts: 36
    Did you see: Edmunds recently made two comparison tests of entry level luxury/sports sedans. None of them included the MB C-class! I find that completely unbelievable. If any brand defines luxury, it is MB. It's like making a sports car comparison without including Porsche, or sport sedan without including BMW! What is going on here, does Edmunds have an anti-MB bias?
  • lg5lg5 Posts: 6
    Has anyone driven this new model.? Do any E class owners have any thoughts on the 4MATIC ride vs. 2 wheel drive.? ABout to order a 2003 and not sure of which options are worth it... THANKS!
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,367
    ...my opinion is that the C is not a "sports sedan", and thus is out of place in most of these comparisons with BMWs and Gs. It's a touring sedan, with comfort and safety put before handling and absolute cornering power. This is why the car consistently brings up the rear in most of the magazine comparison tests - these guys, and they are almost always guys, want handling above everything else, period - and EXACTLY why I chose my C240 over the comparable 325. I wanted silence, a better ride, and long-distance comfort more than that last 5% of absolute cornering power and those "quick responses" that the magazine testers [INCLUDING Edmunds] value so much.

    Just as well they didn't include the C - it would have finished dead last anyway, for the reasons noted above....and this paying customer [as opposed to "journalists" who borrow cars for a few days] could absolutely not care less.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,367
    No customer has driven the car in North America because it's not yet available. You can count on the system being seamless, but it will add weight, and thus lower absolute performance a bit. Depends entirely on how much you want the extra traction - the actual driving experience on past models changes very little from 2wd on dry roads and good conditions.

    If I lived in an area with a lot of precip and/or snow, I think I would opt for it without much hesitation, notwithstanding the weight/performance penalty.
This discussion has been closed.