Last post on Nov 10, 2009 at 7:48 PM
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Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Car Safety, Sedan
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#6881 of 7297 Re: so glad to have found this board! need advise regarding purchasing 1998 C230 [dlsnyder #6879]
May 24, 2004 (7:28 am)
For what it's worth, I have a 2000 C230 and have found it to be very reliable. Two of my friends each have a 1998 C230, and their cars have been good to them, as well. A while ago, someone "ranked" the various models of the C-Class on this board, and the 1998 C230 came in "first." It is the last year for the non-supercharged four cylinder engine, so it will be a mite slower than the 1999-2000 cars. The 1998 will have automatic climate control, unlike the latter cars, and will probably have MB Tex "vinyl" seats rather than the leather inserts from 1999-on. It is a good, basic car--which I believe is the way to go when purchasing a used Benz. Service history is very important--I wouldn't buy without seeing it.
#6882 of 7297 The bottom line on C class reliability
May 25, 2004 (4:13 pm)
I want the bottom line word from those who know. Is the C class Mercedes going to be a hanger queen that I spend too much time getting to and from the shop? I am hearing word of bad Mercedes reliablity here and there, but is it really the case?
Had two bmw's and they were problematic and I'm tired of hassling with cars. I prefer German designs and rear wheel drive (the acura TL is the only japanese car that interests me) but not if it's going to be a stressful ownership experience.
May 25, 2004 (6:03 pm)
Stick with the TL
#6884 of 7297 Re: The bottom line on C class reliability [brucec35 #6882]
May 25, 2004 (8:06 pm)
Mercedes is trying to fix the problems. It must be an embarrassment. However, it remains to be seen until time passes and we can look back at the reliability of 2004 and 2005 models.
May 26, 2004 (7:19 am)
In Canada, the C-Class is sold in Classic trim with steel wheels, cloth interior, no sunroof, etc. It's an effort to keep the MSRP down, as MB prices in Canada are very high compared to the US, in terms of price:income.
Also, we don't have "packages" of options, but instead you pick and choose from options on an individual basis.
As an example, my own 1998 C230, I ordered the Classic trim (I want to pick my own alloys, thanks, and like the steels for winter tires) and added a sliding roof, heated seats, and MB Tex interior.
I do wish we had a wider range of MB products, including C-Class diesels. However, we are getting the Smart foretwo this year, a step in the right direction. However, Smart pricing is very high for the type of car. A well equipped Mazda 3 is the same or less. Too bad.
#6886 of 7297 Re: The bottom line on C class reliability [brucec35 #6882]
May 26, 2004 (9:14 am)
My experience with a 2000 C280 sport model: In nearly 4 years of ownership the radio head unit, driver seat frame, rear struts, battery, fuel level sending units, engine oil seal, 2 headlight bulbs, and 1 rear bulb have all been replaced. The work was all performed under warranty (even the battery, struts and bulbs, which are really wear items), and when needed (the seat replacement was a 2-day job, and the struts, fuel units plus battery and oil seal all together were another 2 day job) loaner cars were made available. The service people could not have been nicer, and when I brought the car in for the fuel sensor problem found and repaired the battery, struts and oil seal problems.
Needless to say, though, had this work not been covered it would have been quite expensive. No surprise, therefore, that I am contemplating saying goodbye to the car when the warranty expires -- I love the 280's look, but what most folks here have said about German reliability does seem to be true.
However, what most say about the way German cars drive relative to Japanese or US models has also been my experience (based on owning VWs, Hondas, my current MB and my wife's BMW): they are wonderful to drive. So if I do say goodbye to my C280, I will replace it with another Benz or (more likely) a 325 with stick.
#6887 of 7297 A novice's concerns
May 28, 2004 (5:13 am)
I apologize if I'm beating a dead horse with this question, but my interest in Mercedes is newly-awakened, so I am not well-informed on basic issues.
I'm considering the purchase of either a 2000 model C280 or a 2001 model C240, both with fewer than 50,000 miles. However, the Mercedes cachet notwithstanding, I'm not interested in spending a lot of time and money on maintenance, repairs, etc. (Owning Hondas and a Lexus have spoiled me in this regard.)
Could anyone with direct experience and/or knowledge of these cars advise me? Just how expensive and time-consuming would it likely be to keep them in reasonable running condition? What am I letting myself in for? At what point do diminishing returns set in? Etc.
Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.
#6888 of 7297 Re: A novice's concerns [carlglover #6887]
May 28, 2004 (6:32 am)
My previous post(#6886) gives the flavor of probable reliability issues for a Y2k C280 -- I think it's clear you will likely not have the level of comfort you've enjoyed with the Honda and Lexus brands. Once your warranty is gone, moreover, maintenance will be fairly steep. I have been told, for example, that the rotors on my car not designed to be turned, but simply to be replaced.
That said, I have no regrets about having bought the car (though I may trade it in soon, as the end of warranty is fast approaching).
Good luck with your decision.
#6890 of 7297 Re: A novice's concerns [carlglover #6887]
May 28, 2004 (11:05 am)
I was considering leasing a brand new 2005 C230 next year, but it's less likely now that they dropped the free maintenance starting with 2005 models. At least it would be covered by factory warranty.
The thought of buying a used model out of warranty seems almost reckless.