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Hey guys, im pretty new to this forum but I have gathered a great deal of info thus far.

Well here is my dilemma:

I have about $20,000 to drop on a new vehicle, Im looking at a 2001+ 230/240 C class sedan. My question is how is the quality of "pre-owned" mercedes? I am used to driving economy cars such as hondas, neons, etc. In which they sound and run horrible after some miles have been put on. Yes I do understand you cannot state in a whole the performance of every used mercedes, but I am asking just for a generalization, because right now im in between a 2005 Acura RSX or a 2001+ MB C Class. Help me out guys, thanks.
 

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C230 Sport Sedan
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I've owned both Acuras and Benzes in the past.

You are less likely to have a problem with the Acura. They are light, nimble, quick, and reliable. They are also quickly worn out, poor riding, more noisy, and less solid feeling than a Benz.

If you go with a Mercedes CPO (StarMark) car with a warranty, then any problems are the responsibility of the dealer, so that's pretty much a wash with the new car warranty of the Acura.

The biggest problem with C-Classes is failure of electrical convenience items, and other electronic issues. Window/Sunroof one-touch operation fails after a while, and you must hold the button to close the roof; Power seats lose their memory setting; older models had problems with ABS/ESP sensors and cabling (fixed on newer models). None of these items will leave you 'dead in the water'. In fact, I've heard of VERY FEW failures where people had to be towed in (actually, I can't think of any off the top of my head).

If you want a car to modify, go with the Acura. There is a far greater availability, and far better prices, for Acura aftermarket parts. Mods for MBs are few, far between, and $$$$.

I personally don't think that I would be happy going back to an Acura after owning the two Benzes. They just have such a solid, secure feeling. People don't realize just how good a C-class handles. It'll give any stock Acura a run for it's money down any off-ramp or canyon road.

In short, evaluate what is important to you, drive them both (be certain to drive longer than the 'around-the-block' that the dealers typically offer), then make your decision.

They're both fine cars, but the fact that I'm here on an MB forum shows which way I would choose.
 

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C230 SS '04.5
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have both. i love the power and 6 speed of the acura rsx type s, but the C handles much better. THe C also feels better. it's really up to what you want, i drive the rsx more because it's a manual but if the C was a manual, i'd probably drive that.
 

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W203 modified
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judaman - 4/20/2005 6:27 AM

Hey guys, im pretty new to this forum but I have gathered a great deal of info thus far.

Well here is my dilemma:

I have about $20,000 to drop on a new vehicle, Im looking at a 2001+ 230/240 C class sedan. My question is how is the quality of "pre-owned" mercedes? I am used to driving economy cars such as hondas, neons, etc. In which they sound and run horrible after some miles have been put on. Yes I do understand you cannot state in a whole the performance of every used mercedes, but I am asking just for a generalization, because right now im in between a 2005 Acura RSX or a 2001+ MB C Class. Help me out guys, thanks.
From an electronics point of view, sound insulation, refinement of suspension I would say that 2003 and onwards were better cars, however the 230K up to 2003 was the real 2.3L engine (not the 1.8L with a larger puffer) which has a lot of pedigree. 2001 cars were full of small annoying bugs like noisy sway bar bushes, trim fade, faulty SAM modules, faulty blinkers at the headlights.

2001 cars also have this annoying 3 pin connection inside the steering wheel which makes it impossible to change the steering wheel to something exciting or more modern because those steering wheels are 2 pin.

Since USA cars are pre-wired then I can say with confidence that a basic Australian c-class of that age is a modders dream. Virtually no options onboard.
 

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00 C-230, 04 C-240
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I logged over half million miles in Japanese cars (Hondas, Toyotas, Datsuns), & can safely tell you that they don't even come close to German cars. Sure, Japanese have the Germans beat in the reliability department, but they don't even come close as far as safety is concerned. German cars are also much more fun to drive, not to mention their performance.

I purchased a used StarMark 2000 C230 with 60K miles a few years ago. I also got the extended StarMark 2 year warranty for $1400). There were a few mechanical problems that surfaced shortly after purchase. All were covered under the warranty, & the dealer's service department was great. The car feels as if it's carved out from one peace of metal (SOLID). Before buying this Benz, I looked at others, including Honda & Acura, but but now I'm glad I went with the Benz.

Last month, I picked up another C Class -- used 2004 C-240 with 17K miles. This car is more refined than the 200 C-230. The ride is very quiet & smooth, but still offers great handling when pushed. It's not as quick as the Kompressor, but much better for hauling two toddlers in the back.

Go with the Benz & you won't be disappointed.
 

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2001 C320
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Go for the Mercedes! The CPO is not a bad way to go, but buying the car from a MB dealership can be costly and some dealerships will not haggle with you.

Last July I bought a 01 C320 with 3K miles. It took 2 months to find, but it was well worth the wait.

Do not be in a hurry to buy the first one that comes along. I saw a lot of caacaa before I found mine. If there is anything you do not like about it, pass and go on to the next car.

Good Luck
 
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