2001 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Elegance C200 Kompressor
It's just OK
Purchased the car with 70000kms. The first owner was a doctor's wife; it has been always serviced at Mercedes.
Nothing has gone wrong with the car, except sometimes when I accelerate off the lights, the car just doesn't go anywhere, I have to pump the accelerator before it responds. I have had some nervous situations at some busy intersections. My brother in law has a 2003 CLK 230, and he has the same problem. I figure it's a Mercedes fault as my mechanic can't work it out.
My Father also has an old reconditioned '83 230E sedan (one owner) and it's a pleasure to drive. I don't think I can speak so highly for my C200 K. The car's performance is definitely nothing you would brag about, but it is what you would expect from an engine this size. The suspension is very loud over bumps, and almost feels cheap when comparing it to the smooth, quiet ride of the BMW 320I or even the Lexus IS200; I have test driven both in the past.
The steering is very light, and I will give the handling a 5 out of 10. The reason I chose the Merc over the BMW, is Mercedes interior (seats) wear a lot better than BMW's soft leather seats. But the comparison stops there; the dash is very plastic, steering wheel wears out quickly (common fault) and the climate control is very analog looking. The sound system is sufficient, BUT it doesn't pick up AM radio, lots of static, (another common fault I have read in forums). I have no idea how they could get that wrong, but anyway.
Interior marks I would give it a 4.5 out of 10; my interior is all grey. Maybe if I had bought one with a black interior, I would have been more satisfied.
Overall the C200K may be quicker off the lights than a 320I and the IS200, but both these cars in my opinion are built a lot better. If you're in the market for this class car, find a BMW with a neat interior.
Would I buy another car from this manufacturer, maybe, but only if it's a C63 and upwards.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No
Review Date: 6th November, 2012