2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C230 Hatchback Consumer Reviews | Edmunds
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2003 Mercedes-benz C-class - Consumer Reviews

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2003 C-Class Consumer Reviews

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Honest C230 Coupe Review
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Mark J
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Hatchback C230 Rwd 2dr Sports Coupe (1.8L 4cyl S/C 6M)


Review

I have had this car for over 4 years now and still looks sharp. Paint has held up well and even where I have chips/scrapes very little rust. Excellent gas mileage (28+) for such a sporty car. Good performance and still feels 'solid' (no flex or gives) just like when I bought it. Very comfortable for a small car as long as you are not too tall in back seat. Trunk room is average for small car. Would get higher ratings but it's a horrible car in the snow. I got stuck once on flat driveway <1" snow. With all season tires still bad in snow. Also, car is very tough on tires, wearing them quickly. Car was in shop 4 times (fortunately under warranty) for computer and sensor prob.


Favorite Features

Sporty (not fast) but still excellent gas mileage. Very stable at high speeds. Good radio and interior temperature control systems. Very sporty wheels (I got the sport upgrade)


Suggested Improvements

Horrible in snow! Wouldn't buy any rear-wheel drive again living in Pennsylvania. Also, why does MB recommend only 91 octane gas or better? Limited paint colors unless you want to pay extra. Interior color choices limited (light gray stains easily).


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Everything You Wanted for This Price
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Bumpy1800
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Hatchback C230 Rwd 2dr Sports Coupe (1.8L 4cyl S/C 6M)


Review

No problems whatsoever. I get around 33mpg on long interstate trips, but only about 20 or so in town. I don't even try to go out if we get a few inches of snow. First winter, got stuck by my mailbox and the mail lady helped push me out, in 3" of snow. Tried top of the line snow tires plus sand bags and got nothing. This is the only complaint with this car, save the onboard computer controls could be a bit clearer, but I hardly use them anyway. Car is pretty, and 3 years later still gets turned heads when I pull a corner! From adults, too! Turns nice and tight, has a ton of features for such a "cheap" car.


Favorite Features

Supercharger, tiptronic, panoramic sunroof, auto wipers, audio controls, dual climate control, cool cupholder


Suggested Improvements

Front wheel drive at least. I know that's not the point of a "sports coupe" but when a few inches of snow keeps you home, that ain't cool (I love snow). Wouldn't mind standard xenon headlights.


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I love this car.
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Adam
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Hatchback C230 Rwd 2dr Sports Coupe (1.8L 4cyl S/C 6M)


Review

I was literally one of the first to buy a 2003 C230 coupe and I've loved it ever since. I have to be completely honest here and tell you that its had its fair share of electrical problems. The only problem was the engine was revving at idle just slightly, but this was fixed by replacing the engine controller (paid by warranty) and now it runs smooth as ever. This was the first MB to have the M271 engine and I was expecting some bugs. Other than that I've had the check engine light come on at least a half dozen times, but I've got that taken care of now. I've had no mechanical problems of any kind, no squeaks, rattles or anything like that, just minor electrical problems. Love the car!


Favorite Features

Built solid as a rock. Mechanical quality is unmatched. Interior is laid out beautifully. Unique styling (you won't see many on the road). Tons of cargo space when seats are folded down (I love hatchbacks). Affordable for a MB. Not the quickest off the line, but handling is top notch. All glass roof.


Suggested Improvements

Electrical issues need to be ironed out by MB. Engine could be a little stronger at low RPM but what do you expect for such an affordable price, if you want a fast MB you have to pay for it. Transmission could be smoother, but only the pickiest of drivers will notice.


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Love the Technology
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By colby
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Hatchback C230 Rwd 2dr Sports Coupe (1.8L 4cyl S/C 6M)


Review

So far great! Love the high tech performance of a world class engine, that is way ahead of its time. This type engine technology is currently being copied by US automakers. This is a real race car engine. British F3 series open wheel cars, which equates too 160mph. They are destroying the other cars that run Hondas. Adaptive performance in a hatchback, is a car that is a phnomenal value in my book.


Favorite Features

Engine, styling, fuel economy, panoramic glass, safety, audio system, smart wipers, value.


Suggested Improvements

Fatter tires and wheels. Slightly plusher seats.


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If Mercedes Benz built a Mustang
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By RGrant
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Hatchback C320 Rwd 2dr Sports Coupe (3.2L 6cyl 6M)


Review

If Mercedes Benz built a Mustang; this would be it. I have had my C320 coupe for almost 3 years and a little over 30K miles. It is one of the rare ones equipped with short throw a six speed manual. (Less than 50 C320s with manuals where imported from Germany). The car continues to make me smile everytime I drive it. The acceleration is impressive, the handling tight and the fuel economy, surprisingly good. There will never be a Mercedes quite like this one in the US again; too bad. I've heard that the C350 version in Europe (278HP) can do 0-60 in 5.4 sec.


Favorite Features

SLK/Crossfire performance with room for four or very large packages.


Suggested Improvements

Continued availablity. It would have been nice to be able to get the diesel version (45mpg)


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Somewhat disappointing
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By kala
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Hatchback C230 Rwd 2dr Sports Coupe (1.8L 4cyl S/C 6M)


Review

I leased it 3 years ago and it was my first MB. Initially it was a fun car to drive. With the Kompressor engine I was zipping around and not spending a lot on gas. But as soon as it started to snow it was terrible. I've driven rear-wheel drives in the snow before, but the torque was too much and I was spinning all over the place. Also, the A/C and heat is so weak, thankfully I had the heated seats. I'm turning it in in 3 weeks and getting a C280 4Matic. Also, the dealer told me MB stopped making the C230 coupes...I wonder why...


Favorite Features

Tight turn radius, good handling, very zippy. Sunroof.


Suggested Improvements

Heating and cooling weak. No good in the snow. Small interior and not comfortable on long rides.


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Economic Magnificence
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Chaz
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Hatchback C230 Rwd 2dr Sports Coupe (1.8L 4cyl S/C 6M)


Review

I could not believe that a working man could own a Benz w/5 year, 50K mile all inclusive plan for the same price as a moderate class GM or other American car. The car is flawless, gets 30+ MPG and is a blast when using the tap shifter with the rev limiter. Winding roads are fun. It has that classic Mercedes feel on the road. I have driven it 45K miles and have had it serviced by the dealer. It has cost me nothing except brake pads and I replaced them myself. There's not a shake, rattle or roll in the car. I smile every time I get to drive it.I have owned a new Lincoln, Chrysler, Volkswagon, Chevy's and my Benz beats them all. I bought a twin Benz in 2003 for my wife. Bravo! Mercedes


Favorite Features

30MPG


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1st Mercedes
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By JMAC
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Hatchback C230 Rwd 2dr Sports Coupe (1.8L 4cyl S/C 6M)


Review

Not another Camry or Accord. More cost effective than BMW or Audi. Very good exterior style - turns heads. I was looking for a Passat, and when I saw the Mercedes and test drove it, I was sold.


Favorite Features

Performance, styling, efficiency.


Suggested Improvements

On board computer is very confusing to navigate.


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Mercedes C230 Coupe
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By ageesey
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Hatchback C230 Rwd 2dr Sports Coupe (1.8L 4cyl S/C 6M)


Review

This is a great car, even though that it is the cheapest Mercedes sold. It's a fun car to drive and still has all of the safety features expected from a Mercedes. The leather makes a huge difference over the cloth and gives the car that luxury feel. Panorama sunroof makes the ride enjoyable for rear seat passengers and there is enough room in the back for full sized adults. Overall, an excellent car.


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Great ride
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Mark
on

Vehicle

2003 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Hatchback C230 Rwd 2dr Sports Coupe (1.8L 4cyl S/C 6M)


Review

I have now owned this car for 2 1/2 years and thought an update would be appropriate. I purchased this car in Honolulu but have since moved to the mainland. This car has been from Louisiana to California twice and to Chicago and back once. All three of these trips averaged around 29 MPG, with an average speed nearing 75 MPH! Not bad. The last trip was a 1705 mile trip over two days; I had no back pain with very few stops. This car does have more creaks and rattles than I would like, is very small, and doesn't handle much luggage, but for a work day runner and with the cost of gas today, I still made a fantastic choice.


Favorite Features

Gas mileage, sunroof, nimble feel on the road, no worries due to maintenance plan.


Suggested Improvements

Several improvements are necessary. The sound system quality in this car is pathetic and I admit, I listen to it very little due to this. The tires placed on the car new only got 21,000 miles before they were bald. Too many rattles for a Mercedes Benz. Would I buy it again? Maybe?


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