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Mercedes-Benz CLK (2005 and earlier)



  • Just got a 02 C230 coupe; red, automatic, C5 premium package, C7 wheel package and CD changer for $27300. This is $1657 below invoice! And no I didn't took the one that sitting in the parking lot; they located one from NY and ship it back to NJ for me.
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    Sounds like you got a great deal. Thanks for sharing the details. We look forward to hearing more.... Happy motoring!



    Hatchbacks & Wagons Boards

  • My C230K makes a clattering noise when starting cold. The noise goes away after a few seconds. According to the dealership, this is coming from the lifters and is normal. The noise cannot be recreated at the dealership when the engine is warm/hot. Has anyone else experienced this? My car is 5 months old and has 1400 miles.
  • Mine does it, it's normal, and you have nothing to worry about.

    Mine is about a year old w/15k miles.

    Obviously, you can't recreate it when it's warm because there's no noise when it's warm. What you could do is park it at the dealer overnight, and start it up in front of them to hear them say, "Ah, yes. THAT noise. It's normal, now leave." :)

    Don't worry about it. If you want to worry about anything, focus on: the fuel sensor, the oil level sensor, and the panorama roof blinds. These are real problems that are fairly common. Oh, and soon we'll be hearing "where's my torque?" posted by '03 owners.
  • Thanks for the info on the clattering lifters. I'm knocking on wood about the other things you mentioned above.

    Just a thought about the 2003 C230K, I also noticed that the engine size is down to 1.8L but is still called the C230. Another irregularity is the C240 which has a 2.6L engine, not a 2.4L. What ever happened to MB's naming convention? As in C230= 2.3L, C320= 3.2L, SL500= 5.0L, SL55= 5.5L, CL600= 5.8L (close enough to 6.0L?) and so on.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363 that it became convenient to "cheat", and both BMW and MB have been doing it for years, even decades. A brand new model typically is correct [like the original 190E for the EU market in 1983], but after that, there is this tendency to try to associate in the mind of the consumer a car "name" with a particular model they remember in the lineup from the past.

    There are so many examples, it is hard to know where to start, but for MB there is the 2.6 V6 called a C240 because there once actually WAS a 2.4 in the EU lineup that slotted in this spot in the heirarchy. BMW did the same thing with the E46 3er when the 2.5 engine was introduced as the "323i" for the first couple of model years, then magically became the "325i" for the last couple, without any change in actual displacement. This is because the car replaced a model [which we never saw here] in the EU lineup that actually HAD a 2.3 liter 6 cyl engine.

    The Coupe now represents an extreme case of this syndrome: it is sold with the same 1.8 liter displacement SC engine in at least three states of tune and hp levels, and badged 180Komp, 200Komp, and 230Komp, depending on hp and the model being replaced. The displacement in all three cases is the same, but the engine is producing three different levels of hp and torque.

    Only in the twisted minds of the marketing divisions...
  • So would the 2003's 1.8L engine be considered worse/better/no real change from the 2002's 2.3L? HP and torque are down, but very little, and M-B gives the same 7.5s 0-60 time for the automatic.

    Is there a bulletin board for the C230 (or M-B) in general? Something like saabnet, or vvspy, would be very helpful.
  • If you look at a dyno comparison of the two engines (was one posted on mbworld a couple of weeks back), the torque peaks quicker on the '02, and keeps a nice plateau, whereas the '03 peaks later for a shorter period of time. In the real world, where torque is at least as important as hp, you will be missing low-end grunt on the new engine. It is lighter, though, so the differences will probably only be really noticeable if you drive them back-to-back. Of course, since I have an '02, I'll have to mention it to '03 owners that I meet. :)

    Websites: - more for modding, but people there have very good technical knowledge - very detailed stuff for D-I-Yers - mostly dead unless you have an slk - very good all-around fourm ccoupe is W203 gen, btw (except for sometimes it's CL203, which is more specific for the ccoupe only, not all c class cars - for example, Brabus lists the CL203 as a seperate gen on its parts listings) - to hear Hugh's rants on fwd vs. rwd :)

  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363 an improvement in every respect [noise, vibration, fuel consumption, mtc requirements, weight] except one: torque is down slightly, as noted above, and arrives further up the rev band. How significant this is in the real world on real roads is marginal, at worst. In general, I'm a fan of the new engine vs the old.
  • How significant are the NVH, etc. improvements? None of those issues seemed overly bad during my test drive, but better is always better, and a significant improvment in MPG (seems unlikely) would be nice.

    Right now, the 02s are ~$2k less than the '03s, some of which I could reduce by not getting a sunroof on the '03 (but I'd probably spend $2k on COMAND which I would almost never use), but otherwise seems to tip the edge over to the older model.

    Note: carsdirect has the '02s going for $3500 below MSRP, and the '03s alread $1500 off. Seems very surprising for a just-introduced model year.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    Well, at least on the West Coast, the Coupes are literally overflowing on the dealers' lots, so no surprise that deals are already here on the '03s.

    I just bought an '02 C240 at the Sacramento CA dealer for $4500 off MSRP on an automatic with C2. Resulting price before tax/lic was just a hair over $30k.

    Dealers in SoCal are already selling '03 C240s for $600 over invoice or less, and the Coupes are on the same level.
  • I'm buying a C230 in two weeks and I don't know if I should get a 2002 or 2003 model?
    Any suggestions?

  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    You got one response on another board - mine is the opposite. I think the new engine is worth having for a lot of reasons, and would probably go with an '03 if the financials on an '02 are not really compelling to you. But that last point is important: if you can find a dealer with the car you want, deals on '02s are VERY strong right now.
  • paul_ppaul_p Posts: 271

    Congrats on your C240 purchase! I hope it turns out to be one of the best cars that you have owned. I look forward to hearing your thoughts and perspective on owning it after you have spent some time with the car.

    FYI my y2k C230 is fine with no problems, at 6k. The '93 Toyota truck is also fine, at 162k. I just drove it from Boston to Atlanta over the weekend, it wears *me* out. :-)

    Take care,
    - Paul
  • jjpeterjjpeter Posts: 230
    Well, its been 30 days since anyone posted here.

    Either thats because:

    1-There is no new interest in the C230 (used or new).
    2-Everyone is completely satisfied and the are NO Problems.
    3-C230 owners are just busy with their lives and posting here is - way down on the list.

    We love our 230, zero problems, runs strong. One thing I did notice recently; while cruising in and out of some early morning fog on the way to Monterey, I was observing the miles per gallon readout. I switched off the lights and noticed the MPG jump up a tenth. So, yeah, running the lights pulls more fuel from the tank - which proves, all energy has to come from somewhere. I was cool though, to see a noticable change in fuel economy.

    We have been averaging 25.7 MPG with combined city and highway driving over the past 4 months.
  • paul_ppaul_p Posts: 271
    Cool! I always was curious about that. Knew it had to have an MPG cost, as I could hear the engine RPMs reduce slightly at idle when turning on headlights.

    I only have a 2000 C230, and therefore no MPG readout. Could you please do the same thing with your A/C sometime, and post your results? I'm curious to find out how much difference there is using A/C versus the "Economy" setting.

    Thanks in advance,
    - Paul
  • I'm debating on purchasing a 2003 C230K or a 2003 Infiniti G35 Coupe. Any thoughts?

    One real life factor that may persuade me to lean towards the MB is storage capacity. Does anyone know if a bike(mountain bike) can fit comfortably in the rear with the seats collapsed?

    I understand that I might have to remove the front wheel if necessary, but if the bike still doesn't fit in the C230K with the front wheel removed then I might as well go with the infiniti.
  • if you can spare the extra $ i would def. go w/ the g35. true, the hatch is more functional. but everything else considered the g35 is much more of a car. however, it's a buyers market when it comes to 230's and the opposite is true for the g. my advise is to wait until the flurry of activity is over on the g. really, if you can wait i think you'll be happier. i like the 230 but it is a budget vehicle compared to the g.
  • Does anyone know if a bike(mountain bike) can fit comfortably in the rear with the seats collapsed?

    It would probably be close. I recently carried a 6' stepladder, and it required me to flop the front passenger seat forward. As such, I'd say that something up to around 5'6" could be accomodated.

    FWIW, even if the I35 has fold-down rear seats, that doesn't always mean that you can easily pass under its clearance limit various bulky objects.

  • earlamearlam Posts: 6
    On the MBSPY website there is reference to AMG C3 turbo diesel. It is the first diesel that AMG has made. It gets 30 mpg, it is a 5 cyclinder, it looks like it has pretty good performance.
  • jjpeterjjpeter Posts: 230
    Just wanted to add that our C230 is a joy to drive! Absolutely love the power, handling, steel vault like construction, decent gas milage, tight turning radius, new car smell (still, after a year!), stereo system, auto tranny, wedgy good looks and bottom gripping seats.

    Have I missed anything?

    Add too if you so feel inclined...

  • Have I missed anything?
    Add too if you so feel inclined...

    I'll add the joy of a manual transmission :-)

    BTW, my snow tires & rims are on order. If your new C230 is going to need winter shodding, recommend that you get around to it soon, rather than procrastinate: we've already had light snow squalls twice in NJ already, I have a feeling that the Eastern Seaboard is going to get hit hard this year...we're due.

  • jjpeterjjpeter Posts: 230

    "I'll add the joy of a manual transmission :-)"

    The C230-C is the first car I have ever bought with the automatic. Have rowed a stick in ever car I have owned since 69. But now, with the shiftomatic feature in the benz, it was time to give my left knee a rest and let the tranny do the shifting, or, a flick of the hand to down and up shift. Now, I am enjoying the lazy mode of driving or leaving it in one gear and rolling in and out of the sweet spot in the curve. Best of both worlds! Whenever I feel the need to remember what its like to manually run through the gears, I hop into my 93 G20 or my 99 Ford Ranger. Meanwhile, the wife isn't burning up clutches anymore! ;^)

  • I know that this is a shot in the dark, but I was wondering if anyone here owns a Citron Green C230 and lives in the Phoenix (AZ) metropolitan area.

    My wife is interested in this color, but she wants to see it in person before we commit to ordering the car in this color.

    Please e-mail me at

  • I am new to the board and have been lusting after this car for a while now.

    My dealer has one 2002 (Bordeaux, Auto, C2, C4) that he seems to be offering me a good deal on. His price is 26875, almost $1000 below invoice.

    Is it strange that he should still have an '02 at this date?

    Is there wiggle room on the price considering it is the older model?

    Is there any reason that I should pay a bit more and get a 2003?

    Also, I love music and it does not have the Bose. Is there a huge difference?

    Any answers would be welcome.
  • It depends on how much more he's asking for the '03 you want. I think I prefer the 1.8 liter to the 2.3, personally, and with the '03 you can get the Bose and any other options you want. All it hinges on is whether you personally think the higher price of the '03 is worth it.

    The dealer may go even lower on the '02 if you start inquiring heavily on the '03, so go for it and see where that takes you.

    I noticed at the link for the C30 CDI AMG that the coupe is available with the n/a 3.2 V6 in Europe. Does anyone think not having this engine here is really a loss? Do you prefer the flat torque curve of the supercharged 4? Would the car be more popular over here if it had a V6?

  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    The price being offered is good, but not sensational. Here's why:

    In our market [Sacramento, CA], the local guy still has over 15 '02 Coupes in stock. So no, it is not unusual for these cars to still be around. There is [or was - I think the program is still in effect] a $1000 cash incentive to the dealer on the '02 Coupes. So, even at $1000 under nominal invoice, they are still making money on the holdback. Most dealers are loathe to invade holdback, but that's what they would have to do to sweeten the deal further. Holdback is approx 3%.

    The incentive on sedans was/is $1500; this allowed us to buy an '02 C240 sedan in September for a price of $30k even on a car with an MSRP of $34.5k. Here too, they had to dig a bit into holdback to find a profit, but they readily agreed to the deal to move the car at the time.

    Summary: there is nothing crazy or out of line about the deal or the availability of the car. As noted above, if you would rather get an '03 with the smaller [but smoother, quieter, and more economical with fuel] engine, good deals are to be had there, too - as long as you live in a competitive market. In SoCal, these cars are already going for only slightly above invoice. That still makes the '02 less expensive, of course...up to you...

  • Wow....glad I drop in from time to time here. I sell Benzes in Connecticut and I believe a current American Market program exists that offers a money factor of .00175 for a 39 month lease( that is 4.12% APR) and if you have to finance, 4.9 for 48 or 60 months and 3.9 for less than 36.
    I will tell you straight....Mercedes-Benz is always the last manufacturer to offer incentivised leasing or financing...this blew me out of my chair when I heard it.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    ...I don't like financing cars, and like leasing even less, but those are indeed exceptional numbers for MBNA. Nothing like a competitive marketplace and a Federal Reserve that is trying to see how low it can go...
This discussion has been closed.