2007 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C230 Sport 4dr Sedan (2.5L 6cyl 6M)
Despite what other reviewers have said, this car has a major Achilles' heel: the 7-speed automatic transmission and the small V-6 engine don't get along. By sporty-car standards, the 2.5-liter engine's 201hp is only marginally adequate; to make this 3400-lb car feel zippy, the transmission would really need to downshift quickly and crisply when accelerating. Instead, it hesitates and is reluctant to downshift even in "sport" mode. So what you get is sluggish performance off the line, which gradually builds as the rpms go up. Too bad; with different transmission software programming, this car could have felt much faster and more responsive. Using the semi-manual feature helps somewhat.
Attractive interior with great ergonomics; fake-leather seats feel great and look as good as real leather would; standard sport-package trim (AMG exhaust tips, subtle trunk spoiler, wide wheels) looks good.
Too late for improvements: 2007 was the final year for this chassis. I hope the 2008 model's transmission has better programming.