Mercedes Benz C230 Kompresor

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The engine is an all-new piece, not the one found in the 1999-2001 C230 Kompressor. Despite the new four’s smaller displacement (the old car had a full 2.3 liters under the hood), Mercedes decided there was currency with the C230 moniker. Whatever the nomenclature, this is the new entry-level C-class sedan, aimed at younger (read: less affluent) buyers.mercedes_benz_c230_kompresor-2-copy.jpg

The C230 Kompressor is one of two new C-class Sport Sedans (the C320 Sport Sedan is the other); the models obviate last year’s $3000 Sport option package. The cars have a restyled front end, textured aluminum cabin trim, and broadly bolstered seats. The C230 has a six-speed manual gearbox (a five-speed automatic is optional) as well as seven-spoke wheels with 225/45ZR-17 tires and a sport-tuned suspension that is calibrated differently than the old sport package’s.

The C230’s price–a low, low $28,710–is likely to be its most compelling aspect to most buyers, because it includes such niceties as automatic climate control, a multifunction steering wheel, and partial leather seats. A CD player is not part of the deal, however.

Despite the engine’s unmelodious note and the stick shift’s rubbery and imprecise linkage, the C230 is the most entertaining, most agile C-class model. The suspension gives much better body control with seemingly no diminution of ride quality, and the car feels better balanced than the heavier V-6-powered cars.

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The C230 sedan finally reveals the inherent goodness of the C-class chassis: It feels like a real competitor to the BMW 325i. Too bad it doesn’t sound like one.

It doesn’t sound like a Mercedes,” opined my passenger. She had a point. The supercharged, sixteen-valve, 1.8-liter DOHC in-line four in the C230 Kompressor has the aural quality of a vacuum cleaner. It’s a pity, because the engine actually is a good performer, making 189 horsepower and 192 pound-feet of torque–21 horsepower and 15 pound-feet more than the C240’s 2.6-liter V-6. Mercedes claims the C230 sedan can scoot from 0 to 60 mph in 7.6 seconds.

Mercedes Benz enters the sports sedan game with full force. This entry-level sedan debuted in 2003 and comes with a standard six-speed manual tranny, a 1.8L supercharged engine, 17″ wheels and sport suspension. Facelifted for 2005.

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Base price : $29,970

Engine : 4 cylinder, supercharged, DOHC, front engine RWD
Displacement : 1,796 cc
Valve : 16 valves, 4 valves per cylinder
Transmission : 6-spd manual, 5-spd automanual
Fuel economy : city – 21-23 mpg
highway – 31-32 mpg

Suspension : F – Independent MacPherson strut
R – Independent five-link
Brakes : F – Vented discs
R – Solid discs

Horsepower : 189 hp @ 5800 rpm
Torque : 192 lb-ft @ 3500 rpm
Redline : unknown

Top speed : 130 mph(electronically limited)
0-60 mph : 7.5 sec.(manual), 8.0 sec.(automanual)
0-¼ mile : 16.0 sec @ 85.0 mph(estimated)
60-0 braking distance : 115 ft
200 ft skidpad : 0.82 g

Curb Weight : 3250-3280 lbs
Overall length : 178.2 in.
Wheelbase : 106.9 in.
Overall Width : 68.0 in.
Height : 55.1 in.

Scribbled on January 6th 2008 in Mercedes-Benz, Pictures
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