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Mercedes-Benz C-Class Sedans



  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    The engines return to a 4-valve head design. The transmission may be more significant [7spd automatic], but in any case, it's win-win: more performance AND lower fuel consumption.

    I agree that the most likely choices for our market are the 2.8 and 3.5 sixes. I'd love to see them finally bring us a diesel in this body, but I'm not counting on it.

    The new B-class will be introduced at the Detroit Show in January, and be available in our market in the fall of '05. It's a stretched version of the next-gen A [which is just now being introduced in EU], and will have a turbo-4 gasoline engine, with again, a great diesel which we may or may not see in our market. This car will have most of the interior space of an E, but with an honest 35 mpg in average use. It is, of course, FWD, which may or may not matter to MB customers - the current A has sold well in EU and its uniqueness doesn't seem to have hurt.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    I bought my first BMW [a 1602] in 1967 at age 22, and the first MB was an overseas-delivered 220 Sedan in 1968. I'll admit that the sales staff at European Motors in SF did not exactly flock to my side when I first darkened their door in the summer of 1968 to order the 220. Still, money talked, as always: I had begun what became a rewarding career in big-system computer operations in 1965 while still in college, and we were already doing well in our early 20s.

    BMW was too new to the US market then to turn anyone away; now, they seem to see themselves exclusively as a "prestige marque"; it's mightily amusing to me to hear their North American dealers and distributor bad-mouth the new BMW 1-series as not "upscale" enough for the US. How time marches on.

    Anyway, you'll get no serious argument from me in selecting either of these cars. Indeed, if a neighbor is a principal at a BMW dealership, that may be reason enough to go with the 325. Do let us know what you decide.
  • ma5246ma5246 Posts: 2
    I bought this 99 c230 with 30k miles and the driver side window was working fine but after a week it gave up on me. Have any one seen this ?
    How much $ are we talking about to fix it?

  • richards38richards38 Posts: 606
    You said you dumped your troublesome '01 Mercedes C-240 but didn't say what car you bought to replace it. Your response might be considered off topic for this group but I'm curious......Richard
  • Hey there,

    My wife's birthday is coming up, and we thought we would surprise her with a Mercedes, and have decided to look at the C320, after being disappointed with the pick up of the C240. We need to know how much we can bring down the price, to a point where some dealers would still be willing to sell. Here are the specs:

    2005 C320
    -Pewter Metallic color
    -Ash leather interior
    -6 CD changer
    -Automatic Transmission
    -Sun Roof Package

    Could someone please provide us with an estimate as to how much we would be able to get this car for? Thanks,

  • twoof1twoof1 Posts: 308
    Use the resources here like the "TMV" or try Cars
  • 307web307web Posts: 1,033
    I wonder if they have improved to quality much with the 2005 updates?
    I noticed that the radio ads for the C Class seem to scream about how cheap the car is and do not talk about engineering or quality.
    This iteration of the C class might be a lost cause. Maybe the all-new 2007 model will be a new beginning.
  • I have an 01' C320. I live in New Jersey which requires State Inspection. I recently had my car transported from another state and the shipper is only responsible for $250 in damage with $100 deductible. The drivers side mirror has a small crack which happened during shipment. New Jersey rejected my car during inspection and told me the mirror has to be replaced. Mercedes Benz charged me $483 + Tax for the mirror. This didn't include installation which they did for free. Are you kidding me!!!!! The mirror has some minor electronics for auto-dimming and moving control. I estimate at best it cost $40 to make with export costs maybe another $75 dollars. Mercedes Benz isn't a military contractor. This is like the $2000 toilet seat or the thousand dollar hammer the US Government pays to supply the Armed Forces.

    I needed a front license plate holder also when I moved to New Jersey. MB charged me $43 for that. An injection molded piece of plastic that probably cost them .25 cents. The previous owner either took the part out of the car or MB never put it in the trunk.

    I accept the fact that parts for the Benz will be much higher than for US cars or even Toyota or Nissan. I doubt that parts for Lexus are this ridiculous. The price for these parts is so out of line for a $40,000 car it's absurb.
  • Which is why many of us buy our parts from other sources. Same parts. Often they even come in 'official' MB wrapping. Use the net to find your parts next time. I'm surprised they installed it for free even though it's a 5 minute job. Before you get surprised again I suggest you ask around for a good local independent MB repair source as well.
  • start with invoice price, and how much below you can get is how good you can negotiate w/ the sales.
  • My 2004 Benz C240 has 1700 miles on it and transmission oil is dripping on the garage floor.
  • Warranty time. There are many places xmission fluid can leak that are minor (relatively speaking) repairs.
  • My new C240 (2004) has all the options I wanted EXCEPT premium sound. Several radio shops say there is NOTHING that can be done since the car is all fibre-optic and they can only do an upgrade if all OE is ripped out and replaced. About $3500. Another shop said yes we can, we'll build you a wooden box in the trunk, but I don't want that. What CAN a pro shop install for less than a kings randsom to improve the sound quality? Any suggestions are greatly appreciated. Thanks!
  • I have a C320 that has the standard 10 speaker Bose stereo. It has very poor sound quality, probably the worst in any car I've ever owned. It is the single worst feature of the car. So don't feel bad that you didn't pay extra to get the Bose in your C240--you are not missing anything. It is definitely not the same Bose upgrade that Mercedes puts in the E-class or M-class. These stereos actually sound very good. But they cut corners on the C-class, and I feel this to be inexcusable for a 40k car. Especially when every other car in its class has a much better stereo. Heck, even 20k toyotas have better stereos. I will make sure to evaluate the stereo more closely before buying my next vehicle.
  • Mine sounds great after I 'tuned' it to my liking (settings). You can still put in aftermarket audio but you can't use the steering wheel controls. Locating the speaker wires may be frustrating but doable. Replacing speakers is also doable. What's the big deal?
  • I have a 2004 C 320 4matic. When I first put on the air conditioner, warm air comes out for about 10 secdonds before it starts to become cold air. The dealer says that this is normal. Has anyone else had this happen to their air conditioner?
  • justinjustin Posts: 1,918
    hi everyone. have an Accord right now that i need to get rid of.

    would a 99 C280 Sport with 49k miles be a bad decision? can get an extended warranty though my credit union. price is $16k.

    i will post in Maint and Repair forum too.

    looking to get a solid car that won't nickel and dime me, with a little style and tank-like build quality built in :)

    looking at Saab 9-5's too.

  • Hi All;

    I am getting close to making a decision on the above cars. I had the 325i for a test drive of 2 days and must say it is very nice. I found its over all ride and handling superb. I will test drive the 240 (Elegance, here in Winnipeg, Canada) next. I would like your thoughts and feed back on a few things...

    What are you impressions of the upgrades to the '05 240? I think they are great and long over due, esp in the case of the CD player. To me they really enhance the quality/appearance of the interior.

    What options have you purchased and would purchase again, and which would you not get again? I intend to keep my options (esp electronic) to a minimum as I find the models well equipped and the less electronics (IMO) the better.

    I have found the stereo on my 14 year old toyota very good. I am not an audiophile, so would I notice or appreciate an upgraded sound system on either of these cars? I don't expect the standard system to be excellent, but is is at least "Good"?

    I have to say I find the exterior of the BMW very appealing over that of the MB, but the interior of the MB has the BMW beat. I love the comfortable sumptuousness of the MB interior.

    My travel needs are modest. I will only put low city miles on it, will get the extended warranty, will "baby" it, and hope to keep it for 8 - 10 years.

    While I think and feel both cars are excellent ( I find both engines more that adequate for my driving needs) I am inclined towards the 240. However my biggest reservation comes from concerns over MB quality. I understand it is not what it has been. I also understand that they are intentional about addressing this issue. I also read the the C class was early on plagued with "bugs". This was esp true in the 2001 and possible 2002 model years. Can I assume that most of these C class "bugs" have been addressed? What has been the experience of those who own 2002/03/04 vehicles? I dont expect a MB to be a good as a Japanese car, but I do expect it to be reasonably good and to hold its value over the long term.

    I appreciate your thoughts...thanks.

  • 307web307web Posts: 1,033
    I would say it is super risky to buy the 240.
    The quality issues are getting more and more publicized, so resale values are going to have to start reflecting that soon.
    If you really love it, instead of expecting to drive it for 8-10 years and spending a lot of money on an extended warranty and then more on repairs excluded by the extended warranty plus all repairs during the period you will have the car after even the extended warranty has expired, just lease it no longer than the length of the factory warranty so you can get out of without hassles in 3 or 4 years.
    If the car is a repair disaster for 3 years, at least it isn't costing you anything extra to keep fixing it and you don't have to deal with the resale of it.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    I think you can barely slip a piece of paper between the differences on a C240 vs a 325. I drove both and broke the tie in favor of a Jan 02 production C240, that we bought at a steep discount in Sept 02. That car has so far proved to be just fine, thanks; it has had two things to fix - an alignment problem that was apparent on our first test drive [and thus repaired prior to delivery - always drive the car you are going to buy], and a minor differential leak that was caused by a plugged vent tube.

    I think the 325 is an excellent choice - I preferred the slightly softer ride and extra back seat and trunk room of the C, vs. the better handling and quicker pull of the 3er. And our MB dealer was to be preferred to the BMW guy where we came from [we have since moved].

    I caution you in the case of BOTH cars: KEEP IT SIMPLE. Avoid electronic doo-dads [memory seats, upgraded stereos, nav systems, etc.] and get the most basic car you can find. Neither of these manufacturers have covered themselves in glory lately in dealing with their electronic problems, mostly because they buy from the same flawed German suppliers in both cases.

    As for resale, it's my experience that 5-6 years down the line, the differences will by minimal - miles and condition matter more at that stage than anything else.

    I think another small advantage for the new C is the upgraded interior - this also gives it a slight leg up on the current 3er, at least in my book.

    Both cars are known quantities now - both are mature products, with few surprises lurking in the closet. I'd say base your decision on what makes you hum...
  • 307web307web Posts: 1,033
    325 has "solid" reliability ratings that are pretty good. Not like a Camry or Lexus, but much better than the current reputation for MB cars.
    BMW 3 Series is a resale darling and the C Class will have to start reflecting their low JD Power quality ratings and other reliability ratings, and general complaints from so many owners compared to BMW owners how mostly rave about their cars. On top of that recent C Class ads I've heard tout mostly about low pricing. That doesn't help resale.
    I consider it a disposable car that I would lease for only the factory warranty time and mileage period, at most, to protect myself from shaky future resale and out of warranty repair costs, not a car to risk driving for 8 to 10 years and out of warranty.
    If the finance companies haven't yet started lowering residuals on the C Class, then you might make out well on a lease with an unrealistically high projected residual value.
    A Lexus or Toyota is best suited for keeping past the warranty and still being a desired used car retaining good resale value even with high mileage. The BMW 3 Series will also do well used just because they are loved for performance and hipness-factor and they are "reasonably" reliable at the same time.
  • I have to say I appreciate the comments made about MB by both 307web and jrct9454. If I just look at the reviews and press about MB lately( say the last 5 years) there dosent seem to be much good there in terms of customer care and reliability... though I have no doubt there are many good and solid vehicles out there... for a company that prides (or at least use to pride) itself on well made and (longer term) reliable cars... they seem to have come a long way...

    Much of this would not matter to me except that ever since I was a kid I fell in love with MB sedans and always dreamed of owning one. Back then (say the '60's) they were still expensive but they were also known for their long life. Now, for the first time in my life I am at the point of buying one... and because of the reliability thing...I just dont feel overly confident about it and shouldn't you feel confident about your new car?... Its sad, but I think that on a MB corporate level its a disaster... because they may well be weakening their present owner base and also driving new (potential) owners like me away. Remember, I WANT to buy one. I will test drive the '05 240 this weekend, I'm sure it will be very fine, but its the 3 plus years down the road that concerns me. BMW will cover ALL maintanece, service, and wear and tear items for a few years, thats nice... but you know its not the money...its the confidence they seem to have and the industry seems to have in the vehicle that matters
  • 307web307web Posts: 1,033
    If you love it so much, why not lease it for 3 years so you can drive it with less risk?
    You will have to pay maintenance, but at least all the repairs will be free under warranty and the resale of it is not your problem.
    At least it looks good, the new interior is nice and it has prestige and valet appeal.
    If you have a good dealer that always has loaner cars available, it may not be that bad even if you are unlucky and get a problem car.
  • While I understand Leasing is a good option in some cases, I dont think it is in mine. As I mentioned, I hope to keep my next car a good while and so leasing is a more expensive option. At the end of a 3 year lease, I would be out about $23,ooo and no car and no equity and back to square one... while not a risk.. it is a huge loss. If I bought or leased the car it would be under warranty either way, so no difference there. Here in Canada the maintanece of a new BMW is covered for a few years, but not on the Benz. So I would be liable for that under a lease too. So no change there. As for prestige and "valet" appeal (!?) These are not factors for me, I am looking to buy the car I want because I want it and it is at least reasonably good. Although I understand these might be positive factors for some buyers.

     I dont mind paying more to own and maintain a car that I really want, I just want to have a good feeling about its long term prospects when I buy it. Which is why I like the fact that both the 240 and the 325 have been in production for a number of years.
  • rqcrqc Posts: 95
    Here's a question I've pondered for a while. The C240 sedan has a 168 HP 6 cylinder engine while the C230 has a 189 HP supercharged 4 cylinder engine. Why do people choose the C240? I can see that the C320 is more expensive, but when I drove the C230 and the C320, the differences were not huge. So what's attractive about the C240? The C230 is probably faster and can have most if not all the options the C240 offers.

    Too bad we don't have a turbo diesel version. I could understand that - lower HP but much higher torque.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    We picked the C240 2 years ago, and I would do it again, because it rides more softly and quietly than the C230. The choice of Z-rated summer tires, and the use of staggered tire sizes means the C230 is too compromised to be the kind of quiet, refined touring car that I want in my MBs. If you don't know what I'm talking about, or simply can't tell the difference, then the C230 would be a good choice for you.
  • ...some prefer the 240 over the 230 does in fact relate to options. You can get 4MATIC and multi-contour driver's seat on the 240, but not the 230.
  • wmquanwmquan Posts: 1,817
    Doesn't the C240 also come with real wood inlays vs. the aluminum trim in the C230? I don't think you can get wood with the C230. Some folks prefer the wood, some prefer the aluminum.

    The C230 also comes with the sport seats. While they are generally very comfortable, some prefer more conventional seats, to go along with the smoother ride.

    Finally, while the C240 could use some more power, its power delivery is different, as only a V6 could be compared to a supercharged 4-cylinder. It's best to drive two back-to-back to decide.
  • rqcrqc Posts: 95
    In June of 2003, I did drive the C320 Sport Sedan and the C230 Sport Sedan back to back in 30 minute test drives and they were shockingly close except for the price. Actually the C230 handled a tad better since it had less weight on the front wheels. Since I was looking for more sport than luxury, I didn't look at the C240 since it seemed a bit anemic on paper.

    I understand that some people are interested in comfort more than anything else, so I understand why those folks would prefer the C240. Thanks for clarifying the C240's place in the market.
This discussion has been closed.