2005 Mercedes-Benz C-Class: good deal?

Thinking about making a purchase of a 2005 Mercedes C230K sports sedan with 72,000 miles…offered at a dealership for $5500…any thoughts?

Old German luxury cars are a big risk. If you just have to have it, find a good MB mechanic and pay to have it inspected BEFORE you make an offer.

Why this car?


Listen to texases. He speaks the truth.


The car will be a lot more expensive to maintain that a comparably sized one from a non-European manufacturer. Repairs are also expensive when needed too. If that doesn’t bother you, then consider buying it. Get it inspected by a mechanic you trust first. There might be expensive work needed soon and you need to know that now.

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Forget it

I worked at a Benz dealer for many years, and I can tell you that particular model you are considering was a notoriously bad vehicle.

The engine had SERIOUS mechanical problems. It was the cylinder head, as a matter of fact. We were replacing them left and right

The entire car had ridiculously bad electrical problem. Literally front to back, top to bottom. And I don’t mean just one or two things. Power door locks, power windows, airbag wiring, ac stepper motors, fuse boxes and so forth. EVERYTHING

The build quality wasn’t particularly impressive

Let me put it to you like this. Dealership mechanics used to rake in money hand over fist working on these vehicles

On a positive note . . . the 5spd automatic transmission was okay

You have been warned

I suggest you look at a comparable Acura instead


Thank you…I drive an Acura which has been awesome.
Advice taken…

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… and they surely don’t improve after 14-15 years of use!


As an alternative you may want to consider a Chrysler Crossfire built in Germany by MB using commonly available bin parts from the previous generation SL.

Advantages are the 3.2 noncompressed V6 and generally a significant discount from without the diamond star halo.
Disadvantage is that body parts are exclusive to the Crossfire so may be harder to find if your wreck it.

How can a 2 passenger vehicle be an alternative to a 4 passenger C-Class ?

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Sorry, missed the C instead of the SL.

I cant really add to the STELLAR advice given by my fellow Automotive Physicians here…so I wont try.

Used German luxury and or performance vehicles are basically the perview of enthusiasts and or mechanics. These two groups of people not only don’t mind mechanical bugaboo’s (and there are usually quite a few) they actually enjoy them.

The mechanical problems of these vehicles will absolutely swamp you if you do not do your own work If you do perform your own work they can still be a financial burden, but not as extensive of course. I have owned many of these types of vehicle and I can say with the utmost confidence that I would NOT have owned them if I were not the one spinning the wrenches. That’s basically the deal.

It was actually an SLK twin in the first generation. The Crossfire continued with the first generation when MB came out with the next generation SLK. I had a Crossfire roadster as a car rental once. It was a terrific car, even though the trunk space was almost nonexistent with the top down.