For The engine has just about enough low-down pull to keep life easy, and this is the cheapest diesel model. Executive SE trim comes with most of the equipment you want, and has the most comfortable ride.
Against You have to put up with an unforgivably gruff engine, and you might occasionally find yourself wanting more performance. Fuel economy and emissions aren’t as good as the more powerful C220 CDI model's, either. Executive SE versions don't handle particularly well.
What Car? says
The Mercedes-Benz C200 CDI Executive SE is a decent budget option, but we reckon the C220 CDI in Executive SE trim will make more sense for most drivers. The C-Class still lags far behind its best rivals, though.
What Car? readers say
View the whole Mercedes-Benz C-Class Saloon range
Target Price team says:
The Mercedes C-Class has its strengths, but it’s extremely flawed in a couple of crucial areas. By far the biggest disappointment is the car’s refinement. All models have too much wind and road noise, while manual models have a horribly springy clutch pedal and a notchy gearshift. The four-cylinder petrol engine sounds wheezy and breathless, while the four-cylinder diesels, which make up the vast majority of sales, are horribly clattery and give off far too much vibration.
This on its own is enough to justify the car’s two-star rating – we simply can’t countenance an executive car with such poor refinement. However, that’s not the only area where the C-Class disappoints. A good exec should be classy inside, but the materials aren’t upmarket enough and the design is bland, so the cabin feels drab.
Reader test team says:
Great car. It'll ask you to eat the rear tyres because its so much fun, but you can get 50mpg when you're on a normal run. Plug in the Becker…
Sorry guys but your review of the C-class is not all accurate in my opinion. Having owned a 3 series as well as an Audi A4 I can say the Merc is leaps…
I also have to disagree with the rather pessimistic review of the C class Estate. They must have been given a Friday afternoon car! I live up in the…
In some way I understand What Car the dark interiors are a tad bland. I have sahara beige interior which lifts the the inside hugely. The 220 diesel…