2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Review | Edmunds.com

2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class

How do you feel about these results?

Anything else you'd like to add? We're listening.

Contact Me No Thanks
Mercedes-Benz C-Class Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 3.0 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Rear Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 7-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 228 hp @ 6000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 18/25 mpg
  • Bluetooth Yes
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class

  • Within the ultra-competitive segment of entry-level luxury performance sedans, the 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class hits the bull's-eye several times with only a few misses.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Distinct sport- and luxury-oriented models, responsive steering, stable handling, smooth ride quality, impressive Multimedia package, intuitive COMAND controller, excellent build quality.

  • Cons

    Carryover engines not quite up to competitors' power levels, well-crafted interior is a bit austere and not very spacious, no manual transmission available on C350.

  • What's New for 2008

    The Mercedes-Benz C-Class sedan has been completely redesigned for 2008. With the exception of its two available engines and three-pointed star, everything is new and improved. There are also more standard features this year. An all-new C63 AMG model debuts later in the model year.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (27 total reviews)

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

Benz-no-more?

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C300 Luxury 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 7A)

Keep in mind that my C230 - 2008 has only 62,000 Kms, is driven lightly and garage kept. Yet...time to move away from Benz once and for all. To date: both electric side mirrors replaced ($700 each), both gas tank pumps replaced a couple of times (fuel gauge still goes out once in a while), side mirror full of water (looks like fish tank), tire blown sidewall, amongst others and just today car would not start leaving all scratching heads..$$$$ Not to mention Benz's outrageous cost of ongoing service...$500-$800 each annual visit.



9 of 38 people found this review helpful

C-300 16 month review

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C300 Luxury 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 7A)

Thinking of a C-300 Luxury sedan? Read this 16 month, 26,000 mile review first. Terrific comfort, rock solid construction, very good mileage, and great dealer support! Reliability has been excellent - ZERO problems. Overall 25 mpg. A recent 1400 highway trip yielded 28.5 MPG @ 77 mph. My wife had neck surgery a few years ago and she really enjoys driving this finely crafted, smooth automobile.




My first mercedes is a

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C300 Luxury 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 7A)

I have to say that I didn't know what to expect, but I am so pleased that I chose a Mercedes this time around. I normally drive Nissan Maxima but have been very displeased with its stability and maneuverability (drove like truck!!). I heard how fun it was to drive a C-Class so I test drove the 2008 when they came out and was blown away. Great pickup and the steering is awesome. I'm a bit of a "speedaholic" so this car works for me for its safety features as well.




My first mercedes

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C300 Luxury 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 7A)

I couldn't wait to get this car when it first came out. I test drove the BMW 3 series a few times before I made my decision to get the Benz. There is nothing like seeing the emblem on the hood of the car when you are driving down the highway. I have not had any issues with this car and the gas mileage is great. The service a A+ as well.




Great car/value/buy!

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C300 Luxury 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 7A)

Bigger, faster, smoother, and quieter than my 2004 Comprressor Sports Sedan. Appears to be improved in all areas. Classic Mercedes exterior styling, but the company should swallow half the cost & put real leather in all models to elevate itself above the BMW 3 Series entry sedan. Received a great deal with year end factory rebates & convenient home delivery!




No all it's cracked up

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C300 Luxury 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 7A)

I've driven this car for 3 months and am not impressed. The tiptronic shifts for itself when I rev towards redline. The interior seems cheap. The volume controls on the steering wheel should be on the left side instead of the right. The car seems crude compared to the Acura TSX and BMW 3 and Lexus IS. My other car is the TSX and the tiptronic shifts much better and much more responsive. And it won't upshift by itself!! It is also difficult to coax a downshift when at medium rpms, this is no problem on the Acura. The instruments are archaic and difficult to read when compared to the Japanese counterparts. People who are happy with this car must have driven Buicks beforehand.



Full 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Review

What's New for 2008

The Mercedes-Benz C-Class sedan has been completely redesigned for 2008. With the exception of its two available engines and three-pointed star, everything is new and improved. There are also more standard features this year. An all-new C63 AMG model debuts later in the model year.

Introduction

Since the Mercedes-Benz C-Class' last full redesign in 2001, the entry-level luxury sedan landscape has changed dramatically. Newer models have been offering ever higher levels of creature comforts and driving excitement. As such, Mercedes' entry-level car has been at an increasing disadvantage, with its small backseat, uninspiring handling and ordinary cabin furnishings being the notable drawbacks. American consumers would seem to agree, with the C-Class' archnemesis, the BMW 3 Series, outselling the C-Class by a considerable margin last year.

Mercedes-Benz's cavalry arrives this year in the form of the fully redesigned 2008 C-Class. It's meant to address many of the previous car's faults. The wheelbase has been stretched slightly, improving interior space, especially in the rear seat. It's not a massive gain, but the resulting cabin is certainly larger and feels airier than it did before. The C-Class interior also benefits from new features, including a very impressive optional hard-drive-based navigation and surround-sound audio system, along with a much-improved version of the COMAND interface.

As before, there are Sport and Luxury trim levels, but this year Mercedes has put in extra effort to make the trims more distinctive. The C300 and C350 Sport models feature more aggressive exterior styling and suspension tuning than the classically styled C300 Luxury. Inside, this sort of differentiation continues, with the materials and overall ambience tailored specifically to each version.

Underneath, the C-Class' basic suspension design is the same as the previous model, but the components are lighter for improved handling and ride comfort. Steering feel and quickness have also been noticeably improved. Thankfully, high-speed stability and a comfortable ride, qualities always associated with Mercedes-Benz, are still intact.

Mercedes-Benz has chosen to carry over last year's V6 engines and will again offer all-wheel drive. Notably, there will be a new AMG model coming out in the spring or summer of calendar-year 2008. It features a 6.2-liter V8 and the usual high-performance modifications to improve handling and braking.

Overall, the new 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class is a welcome improvement. The distinct Luxury and Sport trims should help attract a wide array of new and traditional buyers, while the interior is now fully up to date in terms of features and design. Plus, the 457-horsepower C63 AMG is bound to give the vaunted M3 a serious run for its money. However, the C-Class still exists in an incredibly competitive segment. Audi, BMW, Infiniti and Lexus (among others) offer very good luxury performance sedans, which are often less expensive and more powerful than a comparatively equipped Benz. All of these cars deserve a long look, but with its mix of driving involvement, comfort and high-tech goodies, the all-new C-Class is a fine choice for an entry-luxury sedan.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class is an entry-level luxury sedan available in five trim levels. The C300 Luxury and C300 Sport share the same engine, but differ in exterior styling elements, interior trim, front seat design and standard transmission. Both C300 trims' standard equipment includes 17-inch wheels, a sunroof, eight-way power front seats, a tilt-telescoping steering wheel, dual-zone automatic climate control, MB-Tex cloth upholstery, the COMAND control interface with a pop-up display screen, Bluetooth connectivity and a CD stereo with an auxiliary audio jack. The C300 4Matic Luxury and C300 4Matic Sport trim levels feature exactly the same features but add all-wheel drive.

All C300s can be equipped with the Premium I Package that adds rain-sensing wipers, auto-dimming mirrors, heated front seats and satellite radio. In terms of standard equipment, the C350 Sport is essentially a C300 Sport with the Premium I Package and black bird's-eye maple wood interior trim.

Options available on all five C-Class trim levels are the Premium II Package that adds split-folding rear seats, a power rear window sunshade and bi-xenon headlamps. The Multimedia Package includes a hard-drive-based navigation system, voice controls and a premium Harman Kardon surround-sound audio system that adds an in-dash six-CD changer. Stand-alone options include leather upholstery, a panorama sunroof, TeleAid satellite communications, 18-inch wheels, an iPod integration kit and the in-dash CD changer.

Powertrains and Performance

All 2008 C300 models are powered by a 3.0-liter V6 that produces 228 hp and 221 pound-feet of torque. A seven-speed automatic is standard on the C300 Luxury and optional on the C300 Sport, which comes with a six-speed manual. Mercedes estimates a 0-60-mph time of around 7 seconds. All C-Class models come standard with rear-wheel drive except for the C300 4Matics, which are all-wheel-drive.

The C350 Sport is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 that makes 268 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque. The seven-speed automatic is the only transmission choice. In track testing, we clocked the C350 from zero to 60 mph in 6.2 seconds, which is certainly quick, but unremarkable compared to the BMW 335i and Infiniti G35. Mercedes estimates fuel economy to be 17 mpg city and 25 mpg highway for the C350 and 18/25 mpg for a rear-drive C300 with an automatic transmission.

Safety

The 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class comes with a full load of standard safety equipment, including front side airbags, full-length curtain airbags, active front head restraints, stability control, traction control and adaptive antilock brakes that feature brake assist, brake drying, pre-pressure and hill-start assist.

Interior Design and Special Features

Although beautifully crafted, the C-Class cabin can come off as a little austere and a bit bland. The previous and awkward-to-use version of Mercedes' COMAND system has been replaced by a smart new iteration that combines physical dash buttons with a mouselike controller and a large LCD screen that pops out of the dash upon startup. When equipped with the Multimedia Package, the C-Class is transformed into a mobile sound studio -- and movie theater. A built-in hard drive not only powers the navigation system, it can also store up to 4GB (almost 1,000 songs) of MP3 files. With the car in park, the car can also play DVDs through the pop-up LCD screen and superb Logic 7 surround-sound system. The 2008 C-Class has grown up only ever so slightly from the last generation, so it's still on the small side compared to others in its class. Trunk capacity is 12.4 cubic feet, which can be expanded with the optional split-folding rear seats.

Driving Impressions

In a straight line, the new 2008 Mercedes-Benz C300 and C350 are no quicker than the cars they replace. However, the C-Class' substantially revised chassis has dramatically improved the steering's precision and feel. There's now useful information channeled through the chunky steering wheel. In terms of overall dynamics, this C-Class comes closer to the vaunted BMW 3 Series than ever before. Despite its sportier character, the C-Class is never harsh on the road, and gobbles up miles of freeway with aplomb. The C300 Luxury rides a little softer than the Sport versions and has a quieter exhaust system, resulting in a more serene driving environment.

Read our Mercedes-Benz C300 Long-Term 20,000-Mile Test

Talk About The 2008 C-Class

Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 18
  • cty
/
  • 25
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs