2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Kompressor 4 cylinder, supercharged from North America


This car is amazing!


Nothing, but the sunroof and cup holder was broken, but these things were easily fixed.

General Comments:

This car is very quick. Also you would get many cool points because it's very stylish. It feels like you're driving a muscle car, but you know it's not the fastest thing on the road.

But remember it's only the entry level Mercedes, and many people could get one if they have the money.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th November, 2009

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class from South Africa


Running costs are high


Aircon broke down at 76,000 Km. Cost ZR 14,000.

Sensor in cam shaft housing leaks at 81,000 Km and causes engine warning light to come on. Cost ZR 11,000.

I am told this is a regular problem and that M B are aware of it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th November, 2009

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C180 Kompressor 1.8 petrol supercharged from Indonesia


Don't let the base C180 badge fool you, it's an excellent C-Class in every way


Rough idle, fragile visor mirror covers, noises from behind instrument cluster, squeaky brakes.

General Comments:

Had to get myself another Mercedes after various stints with a BMW 323i first, then a Suzuki Swift and last a Toyota Harrier. I needed to downsize from my Harrier to something more economical, while still giving me the comfort, refinement and reliability I seek.

My first Merc was a slow C180 W202 model, which really put me off. After reading the good reviews that the C180K receives in Mercedes Enthusiast and What Car magazines, I decided to consider it among other options such as C240 and C270 CDI.

After a slow but fun period of looking at different cars, I finally bought a black 2003 example with a very modest 35k km on its odometer. Apparently it had only been used as a wife's runabout to do grocery shoppings etc. It had a full MB service history and in an absolutely standard condition.. even the Continental tyres were the ones that came with the car when new.

My 'new' C180K is really different from the old C180; the engine doesn't leave me wishing for a bigger engine and it pleases me even more when filling up at the gas station. Very efficient, in my opinion, for an entry-level exec car. It averages 10-11 ltr / 100 km, which is really good for Jakarta traffic.

Ride and acceleration are very smooth, as expected from a Mercedes Benz automobile.

Downsides are: not as roomy as the old W202; fragile visor mirror covers (both left & right sides' plastic hinges broke after parking on a very hot day), squeaky brakes (probably due for a change) and funny noises / vibrations from behind the instrument cluster at certain (low) rpm range. Can't trace the source of the last problem.

Overall, I'm pleased with the car and looking forward to put many happy kilometers in it for the next few years. My next car would be the new C200K W204 *fingers crossed*

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd November, 2009

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class from North America


Piece of junk!


The car is 6 years old and has less than 69,000 miles on the odometer. However, after the last service the dealer informed me that the oil is leaking from the engine.

I contacted Mercedes-Benz Customer Service and they told me that "It is not uncommon for a Mercedes of this age to have this kind of a problem" and refused to take any actions.

In my younger years back in Russia, I had a cheap Russian car Zhiguli (aka Lada). The car was almost my age at the time and yet it took way more than 69,000 miles before it started leaking oil from the engine and I had to rebuild it. Oh yes, Zhiguli coasted $4,000-5,000 at the time.

General Comments:

This car is a constant pain and a waste of money. I have never thought a horn can break on a Mercedes. What can I expect from a more sophisticated electronics? Or fog lights that will cost me $580 to repair...

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 8th August, 2009

27th Aug 2009, 17:05

You are so right; I bought one from new which developed problems with the auto gearbox, electrical surges, steering rack.

The tr-star badge is of plastic now, and this speaks for itself.

MB has another 40 years of glory with an army of poor turning middle class in India and China that will fall as well in our trap. After that, we'll see...

8th Jul 2017, 19:06

My daughter owns one of these and it is constant mechanical trouble, as well as cosmetic pieces like door handles and various cover plates falling off in your hand. Junk by comparison with the earlier C-class.

More generally, this is right in the middle of two MBZ year-spans that should be completely avoided: 1993-6 (wire harness and A/C problems) and 2000 - 2006 (cost-down attempts by MBZ resulted in a series of junky and unreliable models up and down the range).