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Mercedes-Benz CLK (2005 and earlier)

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Comments

  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    Did you have a chance to play around with the settings of the Bose audio system? You will have to tweak it to get the full effect. Using the "Ambiente" mode makes a tremendous difference, and since this is not necessarily the default setting, you may have been at the factory presets.

    COMAND is basically a navigation system. However, you can get Telematics as well, I think, which can display your custom headlines, weather, stock tickers, etc. It's CD-based (Acura's DVD doesn't have very good coverage in some areas anyway, so it's not the be all and end all solution) but the in-dash CD-ROM can play audio CDs as well. It has similar features to the Acura and Lexus systems, with points of interests, etc. COMAND is a factory only option and cannot (well, not for a large amount of money) be practically added at the dealer. You can have COMAND + the CD changer.

    The leather shortage is apparently due to all of the recently slaughtering/incenerating of the cows due to foot and mouth disease. Early models would've been upholstered with ex-stock.


    Drew
    Host
    Vans, SUVs, and Aftermarket & Accessories message boards
  • tommyp13tommyp13 Posts: 146
    I took an Alice in Chains tape (took one that I'm very familiar with, so that I know what it should sound like) and blasted both stereos, one after the other. I'm sure that people in the dealer's parking lot weren't happy to hear "Them Bones" at high volumes there, but I had to check them out before placing my order. The Bose upgrade sounded much richer, so it's in. I also heard that you can splice in a sub and amp if you choose.

    Because of the warranty issues and fiberoptic wiring, I decided that I can deal with that stereo for the length of the warranty. I wanted a cassette deck anyway.

    Everyone should consider the C7 wheel package as well. For $750, it's a bargain.

    I placed my order on Thursday, under the assumption that it would be a 3-month wait. Talked to the rep about transferring my deposit with their Mini dealership, which we did, on Friday. He had looked at the production schedule Thursday night, and said that my car will be produced in late August, and will be delivered to the dealership in late Sept. So, I think that they say there's a 3-month wait to be conservative; it might be less.

    Don't forget that you can get a cd changer from autoclass or clairparts for about $400 (not including installation). When I negotiated, the rep threw in the cd changer for a little less than invoice, just to seal the deal.
  • skobolaskobola Posts: 207
    Is there a web site which has pricing of the C230 with options? I see that a number of you have prices, however, www.mbusa.com still does not have any pricing/"build your own" pages in there.
    However, I have time... I will have to get my new car in April 2002, but I would like to tinker with C's options anyway. Thanks.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    The website has the prices [except for a couple of option packages] as part of the C-coupe featurette. But no, there is not a build-your-own feature yet that will add it all together for you.
  • tommyp13tommyp13 Posts: 146
    No "build your own" yet.

    What it's missing: premium package is $2700; teleaid by itself is $750 (free for initial cars); and the all-important $750 c7 wheel pkg.

    It's missing the pricing for the cell phone/cd changer combos, but those are pretty silly combos that no self-respecting person should get, especially considering the pricing of these options on the c240/320. The phone is really not worth it.

    Just checked, and Kelly Blue Book has no pricing; neither does Edmunds (what are they waiting for?).

    But, don't be afraid to go into a dealership and talk to someone - they have the best info on pricing and options.
  • rockribbedrockribbed Posts: 44
    I'll start negotiating with my mb dealer tomorrow. He has a black 'stripper' which is just what I want (6 sp, cloth, std stereo, no cd, no sunroof). Was looking at a WRX and an A4 Avant, but the turbo lag on the WRX is unacceptable, and the price of the audi is out of sight! The baby benz has the cache, the performance, the mini wagon capability, and the fuel mileage that I want, for the price of the the rice rocket WRX wagon. I'll probably look to the aftermarket for a single cd player - a lot easier to load/change cd's. Plus its a real car with rear wheel drive, and since precise handling is my goal and not stop light grand prix's I'll pick the mb.
  • tommyp13tommyp13 Posts: 146
    It's got fiberoptic wiring, so I'm not sure how much you'll have to change if you go with an aftermarket headunit. I'd guess that you'd have to redo everything from the h/u up to the speakers, which could run you some serious cabbage. Also could run into problems with warranty if you get electrical problems with the car.
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    A speaker change is not a problem for the stock system. However, you will not be able to find a compatible aftermarket in-dash CD player unless you rip out the entire existing system and replace it. The wiring, including the wiring to the CD changer, is fibre optic for improved signal and weight reduction compared to the typical copper wiring.


    Drew
    Host
    Vans, SUVs, and Aftermarket & Accessories message boards
  • rockribbedrockribbed Posts: 44
    Thanks for the tips, guess I'll live with the 6 disc or use an external player and the car kit adapter (ie, thru the cassette player slot).
  • s852s852 Posts: 1,051
    I found out that the COMAND navigation can play CDs, but when you play a CD the navigation stops working.
    It is very crude.
    If you want to play CD music and use the navigation at the same time, you still need the $995 CD changer.
  • pablo129pablo129 Posts: 2
    I have a deposit on a silver C230 with the premium package (leather), and my delivery date is supposed to be the 2nd week of august. I have contacted the dealer (MB of Ft. Lauderdale) to find out if the mad cow or hoof and mouth disease would affect my delivery date. I was told that it would not be affected. But today I decided to call 1-800-FOR-MERCEDES and ask. They told me that the shortage of leather is only affecting the new c230 and that they will not start production on leather models until mid-september, and that there have been no leather models produced yet. I was wondering if anybody has any other input....I can't afford to wait until October to take delivery of my car...
    Also billytt, how did you get leather in yours and when did you place your order??

    thanks
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    Just so you know, the tape deck is hidden behind the main LCD control panel, so if you use an external tape adaptor (those apparently ruin tape heads in the long run, you know), you won't be able to close the LCD panel.


    Drew
    Host
    Vans, SUVs, and Aftermarket & Accessories message boards
  • tommyp13tommyp13 Posts: 146
    What you can do, though, is buy everything else in the premium package except for the leather, which should come up about $1100 cheaper, then add leather at your convenience. Since the airbags are on the door panels, not the seats, there would be no problems with them.

    Of course, aftermarket leather will run you a little more than $1100, but you'll have many more options available to you.

    Or, ask your dealer to look for a car already in a dealership that has leather already. There are some, and you might get lucky. Or try calling other dealers yourself and see if they have any.

    Rockribbed, don't forget that a cd changer would be covered under the warranty, so it might be worth the money in the long run (should run you about $500 with installation if you buy unit from autoclass or clairparts, or you could try to negotiate it with the salesperson).
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    image


    Just a reminder that the MB chat is on tonight (6-7pm Pacific/9-10 pm Eastern). Hope to see you there!

    http://www.edmunds.com/chat/mercedeschat.html

  • Pablo, your car will be already built and on it's way across the 'pond', so if your dealer says it's got leather, then it's got leather.

    s852 - $995 for a CD changer! Good grief - I thought MB UK were ripping me off at £330 inc. tax. (around $500).

    I've asked on the Usenet and someone who has an 'E' Class with COMAND says there are RCA jacks in the glovebox so if the system is the same, there are neater ways to hook sound up (rather than use a crappy cassette adapter). C'mon guys, we're talking about a 30K car here, is it REALLY worth saving a few hundred bucks for something that'll look aweful?

    Regards, John
  • vmixervmixer Posts: 4
    I feel like I was very, very lucky -- my dealer was able to find a car with leather on quite short notice (I had to buy something this week because of an insurance settlement). I got all the options I wanted, but my second choice of color (black instead of Bordeaux). Just letting you all know that it can be done, but probably only for a few more days (or hours!)...

    --Geoff
  • jbudrojbudro Posts: 1
    After a month or so of lurking on this and other boards, and having test driven two coupes, I finally put my order in today. Mine will be Alabaster white with charcoal leather, a six-speed and the wheel package. The two testers I drove both had the Panorama roof, and both creaked. In addition, I live in New Orleans and the A/C could not keep up without the shades closed-that would be for 8 months out of the year.

    I chose the six-speed simply because it was a lot more fun for me to drive. I find the shifting very smooth. The clutch does have a short throw, but I got used to it very quickly. Also, the acceleration seemed a hell of alot faster with the manual.

    LEATHER INTERIOR-They cannot even enter the order until the first week of October. They are saying middle of December for pick-up, but I accept the fact that it may be longer.

    FYI, the dealer found two silver six-speeds with charcoal leather and no roof in production right now and available in 1st week of October. I will not get out of my lease until end of November so took a pass on them, especially since every other freakin Mercedes down here is silver and these did not have the wheel package. I am willing to wait 3-4 months for leather-that is how ugly I find the cloth interior!

    POINT OF INTEREST-Of the 6 or so coupes I've seen at my local dealer, all of them have been left on the lot over the weekends with their back hatchs(err, I mean partial glass trunks)open. This means that on any given Sunday, everybody and their brother is trying to open these cars by crawling in the trunk to take a peak. Is there something wrong with the trunk locking mechanism or do these Mercedes salesmen simply not know how to lock the thing? It is the funniest sight to drive up to the dealer on a Sunday to check for any new colors, etc. and see 4 cars with their hatches open and entire families poking their heads in!

    Anyway, let me know if you need any information as I have driven the car several times and have seen 5-6 others. I have seen the cars with every option except the wheel option.
    Jeff
  • Jeff, maybe I am one of the lucky ones but I have the sunroof and I have not heard one creak. Also, we happen to be in the middle of an oppressive heat wave in the mid west and my a/c works fine even with the shades open. I will say that you have a point about the hatch(there I said it!)the hatch is open notice flashes across the control center even when it is not. This is a little irritating and will be discussed at my first visit to my dealer. I too noticed unlocked hatches on the lots on the weekend!
  • s852s852 Posts: 1,051
    They say it is a coupe with a "bonus door."
  • After a one hour test drive by myself ( no dealer rep. babysitting) I sat down and signed the deal. A silver, charcoal interior, 6 speed, sunroof, CD player (at half price),rain sensor wipers and the evolution package. The test drive car was almost exactly the same car. The shifter was precise but requires practice. Never stalled the car, probably because this board warned me of the clutch takeup. As a direct comparison, I drove a BMW 325i coupe and can say the C230 is every bit the car the BMW is. Precise, good power, excellent handling and more important, FUN TO DRIVE. Where I live there are literally hundreds of 3 series BMW's. Why buy a car that will be lost in the crowd? Interestingly, the Mercedes dealer was trying to compare the C230 to an RSX and Celica GTS. I think they are setting their sights too low. Anyhow, the car doesn't arrive until mid Oct. and I can hardly wait. I quess I'll be looking for a good winter tire package. The 17" Conti's would be toboggan's in the winter. Any good leads out there?
  • tommyp13tommyp13 Posts: 146
    I got the C7 package as well. I'm probably going to get 16" steel wheels with snow tires on them for the winter months. Don't want to ruin the new 17 inchers in my first winter with the car.
  • vmixervmixer Posts: 4
    I've been driving the C230K for a couple of days now, and I have to say I'm quite impressed. This is _a lot_ of car for the money. Things I noticed right away where: good power, quiet, fit & finish are top quality, lots of attention (3 people have stopped me as I was parking and asked what it was). There is a little bit of an acceleration hole from about 2000-3000, with the auto. anyway, but above 3000 it pulls strongly (the torque makes it feel like there are a couple more cylinders than there actually are).

    Two complaints (no car is perfect after all):

    The seats (I managed to get leather before the embargo) seem to "bottom out" sometimes if you go over a bump or hit a pothole. There is definitely some shock absorption going on with the seats, but it feels like there needs to be a little more bolstering between the bottom of the seat cushion and the seat frame (at least for big people like me over 200lbs.). I've seen Boxster owners complain about something similar in the seatback and one person even went so far as to pull the front cushion of the seat back off and place a folded towel behind it -- not necessarily a solution I want to entertain.

    Rearward visibility is limited -- I didn't realize how big those C pillars are! The mirrors are good, but could be a bit more aspherical (even on driver's side) to help with blind spots. But, there's nothing wrong with craning your neck around for a quick "check six" when changing lanes.

    Overall, I'm ecstatic. Everybody at work seems to think I won the lottery or something. When I tell them the car only cost about $4k more than a Jetta GLX, they can't believe it. Hopefully, these won't be littering my neighborhood in 6 mos. the way the A4 Golf & Jetta do, but I wouldn't be surprised. As far as I'm concerned, Mercedes hit a home run. Cars like this will definitely help with their Buick-like customer attrition rate (read: death :).

    Cheers,
    --Geoff
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    FYI, the large pillars are essential for the kind of stringent rollover protection that MB builds into all of their vehicles. My M-class has wide C-pillars too. At least you know that you'll be safe if your car rolls over (provided you wear your seatbelt, of course). MB and Volvo are perhaps the only two companies who launch test their cars by launching it sideways off a sled, causing it to roll 4-5 times; you may have seen this in the M-class: Stayin' alive TV commercial.

    Driver's side aspherical mirrors are apparently illegal in the US, but Europeans have been enjoying it as standard equipment for eons.

    There is a lumbar support discussion topic in the Aftermarket & Accessories message board. Perhaps you would be interested in checking it out; Obusforme makes some great ones. Here is the link to the topic:

    /direct/view/.ef020d4

    Hope to see you in our weekly MB Tuesday chats at 6-7pm Pacific.

    Drew
    Host
    Vans, SUVs, and Aftermarket & Accessories message boards
  • crvolscrvols Posts: 23
    Last Saturday I saw a commercial for the new MB coupe and checked our close dealer to see if they had one in. They did and we tested a silver, leather, auto and sunroof. After coming home I decided I wanted to buy it, but it was a demo and not for sale until September after a few hundred test pilots!
    Since this is not what I wanted in my first new MB, I called every dealer in Mass. I found a black with black leather, auto and sunroof that a dealer would sell. I am having the CD added and picking it up on Cape Cod tomorrow. (1 1/2 hour drive). The only price concession I got was $100 on the CD. Oh well, if I like it as much as others on this site, the price issue will fade. Just had the same experience two months ago on an Acura MDX, so I am getting used to it.
    I will post my thoughts after I have had it awhile.
  • crvolscrvols Posts: 23
    I see no one has posted since I did on Friday so I will give you a few impressions after a couple of days:
    I drove home in an intermittent rainstorm and really like the rain sensor that comes with the C2 package. It seems to work just right. I just discovered the sun glasses holder in the glove box and it was a nice surprise. We found there is wind buffeting at about 40 MPH with the sunroof completely open. Closing it to the first position stops the racket yet it is still quite nice. I can't make the remote garage opener work with my garage units. My Acura MDX unit works fine so I would appreciate any advice on what to do. I am using a trunk storage pack I had in my old Volvo to store all the things there doesn't seem to be room for. i.e. road atlas, owners manual, etc. The car seems fast (not quick), quiet, smooth and taunt. I notice a little random noise over very rough roads, but not much else. The controls in the dash are complex and not very intuitive IMHO. The tach is out of the line-of-site and not very useful. I can shift by sound, but would trade the tach and speedo positions if I could. I got the optional $920 CD player for $800 and found it uses the same cartridges as the one I saved from my 97 Volvo. That's the good news, the bad news is: no single play unit, it takes ups a lot of the glove box and is the same unit I paid $700 for with a Volvo emblem four years ago. I think it is a $350 Apline changer? The storage shelf for the two extra cartridges is a nice touch.
    Other than these comments I agree with the few other owners' posts about the negative and positive aspects of the car. My wife and I are thrilled with it. It looks good in black as it blends with the sunroof and other black trim. I had read in the C series sedan forum that some C class cars are being built in Brazil or Argentina? I was glad to see ours was made in Germany. The fit and finish seem up to Teutonic standards. The only quality flaw I have found is that the storage lid in the lower console binds on the bottom of the facia. I am sure this must be unique to my car. On the other hand, the black paint is flawless! Much better than my equally black Acura MDX.
    In summary, We love getting the sport package options in an entry level car. We can't believe We are driving a MB for $30,100! It seats four, stores 39 cubic feet, feels like and convertible, looks great and you get the same service and goodies as if we had bought a $90,000 S class. How can you lose?
  • tommyp13tommyp13 Posts: 146
    That's been one gripe that I have seen a couple of times so far. Any comments?
  • crvolscrvols Posts: 23
    I have not had any sounds from the sunroof itself. It seems solid whether open or closed. I just found that with it fully open, there was wind buffeting at about 40 mph. We solved that by closing it to the first(half way) position. Other than that no problems so far.
  • vmixervmixer Posts: 4
    For anyone wondering what the charcoal gray leather on black looks like:

    http://www.domestech.net/c230/

    Interior looks a little bluish in these pics for some reason, it's truly a dark gray -- not black (charcoal is an excellent description, actually). Paint is basic (non-metallic) black.

    Cheers,
    --Geoff

    p.s. crvols, I have the same problem with the lower console compartment. It seems to get stuck on the way out more often than not.
  • Anybody know of a website that has the invoice price for the new Benz coupe? I've looked here at edmunds, autobytel, and aol's site and can't find anything except 2001 models...
  • djasonwdjasonw Posts: 624
    I decided to take a test drive since my wife's lease on her Lexus RX300 is expiring in October. I was a bit leary of the 230 engine since I test drove a 2000 C230 and found the engine coarse and not luxurious. They have definitely made an improvement in the engine. The car feels exactly like my C320. I actually think it handles a tad better. The engine, though not as refined as the six, is adequate and pulls strong. It has a nice sound at higher RPM. There were NO sqeaks at all from the sunroof. Unfortunately I did not open it during the test drive since it was 95 degrees out. The A/C worked great and I was fortunate to reserve a White/Oyster Leather C2/C4 arriving in three weeks. No tele-aid but I don't care as I have NEVER used it in my C320 OR my C280.
    I think Mercedes has hit a home run with this car. Numerous critics mentioned that the BMW 318ti never did well and with good reason. The car was UGLY and the interior was cheap!! This baby Benz is built to the exacting standards of other Benz products and it feels JUST as good as my C320. One more word... I test drove an RSX 5 speed last week. Granted the car is cheaper (but is considered a competitor). The RSX felt like a TOY compared to the C230 Coupe. NO ESP, NO TRACTION CONTROL, NO SIDE AIR CURTAIN etc!! Take a test drive and you'll agree.
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