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Old 22nd March 2011, 13:36   #16
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

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Originally Posted by sohels View Post
Hello,

I purchased a Mercedes C250 (V6, 7G-tronic) during September 2010. I am a little underwhelmed with the car's performance, and am looking to replace it with a similarly priced car. Specifically, I am looking at the C250 CDI and the Audi A4 3.0 TDI

My requirements:
-A lot of torque in the lower end. I want an immediate, enthusiastic response to throttle inputs - Both, the 3.0 tdi and the c250 cdi will keep u happy in this area.
-Current car has a 13 speaker Harman Kardon sound system. The new car should have something equally good - Audi 3.0 tdi has a 15-speaker Bang & Olufsen system with DVD compatibility
-Car should have a pliant ride. This rules out the BMW 3 series.- The Merc Avantgarde & the Audi on 17s should more or less offer you similar ride quality but the Audi on the hot looking ,sporty 5-spoke 18s would be harsh and stiff.

Answered above in bold

Even if you do settle for the Audi 3.0 tdi , you need to check the availability of this variant. I own 1 and trust me, this diesel variant is almost never available.
Having said that, your timing is excellent. As FS pointed out, there is 1 up for sale right now in 'Classifieds'
Good luck

Last edited by PlatzdaTurbo : 22nd March 2011 at 13:39.
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Old 22nd March 2011, 14:30   #17
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

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After much thought, I've decided to stick with the C250 for the time being. I test drove the C250 CDI and while the engine is very punchy, I wasn't impressed overall - the 5 speed automatic is slow and shifts are very noticeable. The 7G-tronic box in my car is seamless. Hence, when I'm looking for a comfortable drive, my current car is much better with its silky V6, quick and imperceptible gearshifts, and the excellent HK sound system. Also, the performance of the C250 petrol is tolerable if the car is in Sport mode and I use a heavy right foot. The downside of course is 4-5 kmpl.

The 320d is too cramped and the ride is too stiff for my taste, especially in the back seat. The A4 3.0 tdi seems impressive, but I agree that it is just too expensive - I'd pick one up today if it was available for 35 lacs on road. And I've never been a fan of the Superb or the Accord - they may score over the 3/C/A4 in terms of tangibles like space or equipment, but they just lack the panache and finesse of these cars, in my opinion.

I did however test drive the E350 CDI and the 530d and was very impressed with both!
I was wondering if you could do a more detailed review and driving impression of the C250 CDI. It does not exist in any form in this forum (I guess). It is the entry level benz and its a completely new diesel mill I suppose.

Would you or anyone else have the time for it?

I have a vested interest, ofcourse
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Old 22nd March 2011, 16:40   #18
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

That beige A4 has done 18,000+km and I doubt if anyone buys a car like that to drive sedately! I'm afraid its too much of a risk.

Red Liner, the C250 CDI is fun to drive - it pulls cleanly all across the rev-range. The engine does become fairly audible at higher rpm, but the cabin is silent otherwise. Personally, I found the 5 speed auto box a little slow and annoying. The car is stable at speed and I think strikes a good balance between ride and handling. I can answer any other specific questions that you may have, but I very strongly recommend a test drive for the exact same spec car that you plan to buy. This entire thread has resulted from my failure to do so.
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Old 22nd March 2011, 18:29   #19
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

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Originally Posted by sohels View Post
That beige A4 has done 18,000+km and I doubt if anyone buys a car like that to drive sedately! I'm afraid its too much of a risk.

Red Liner, the C250 CDI is fun to drive - it pulls cleanly all across the rev-range. The engine does become fairly audible at higher rpm, but the cabin is silent otherwise. Personally, I found the 5 speed auto box a little slow and annoying. The car is stable at speed and I think strikes a good balance between ride and handling. I can answer any other specific questions that you may have, but I very strongly recommend a test drive for the exact same spec car that you plan to buy. This entire thread has resulted from my failure to do so.

Mine is around 10 months old and at 18,500~ kms right now. Yes its true these cars are bought not to potter around but to be enjoyed thoroughly. But that does not necessarily mean they are subjected to abuse. They are extremely precious and perhaps only drivers with a ferrari or 2 up their garage would drive this crazily even over bad roads. (But then, why would a guy who can afford a ferrari buy this in the first place ?? He can very much settle for a 6.0 w12 or 760Li for his daily ride)
Point is, i drove mine throughout the Mumbai monsoon as well and if you ever check out the car you will see that it is gleaming inside out with no problems whatsoever. You could still keep that 3.0 TDI on offer as a prospect. Of course, only if you can check it out in person.
Also, i have driven the C250 CDI as well briefly and yes there is enough power on tap but strictly from a driver's point of view, that is where it ends. There is no response what so ever from the steering and IMHO that car is plainly boring. The 320d really does offer more thrills inspite of being short on power.
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Old 22nd March 2011, 21:32   #20
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

If i was in your place. I would definitely consider the Audi A4 as the quottro is much more fun to drive. The Merc is good on power and torque but the steering feels dead to me. It is good on straight lines like most mercs but lacks the thrill factor and the responsiveness from the steering, when you are cornering the vehicle. On the inside though, i love the interior of the merc as compared to the audi or even bmw for that matter.
Like PlatzdaTurbo said, 320d has one of the best steering feel. IMO it handles like a go cart (in other words, you know exactly what you are doing with that car). But its not relevant in your situation.
Audi's 3.0tdi is somewhere in the middle and it is more fun than the merc. But i dont think it is as quick as the merc(correct me if i am wrong).
All in all, if you love driving, 3.0tdi is the best choice between the merc and audi.
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Old 22nd March 2011, 21:42   #21
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

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Originally Posted by Mike89 View Post
Audi's 3.0tdi is somewhere in the middle and it is more fun than the merc. But i dont think it is as quick as the merc(correct me if i am wrong).
All in all, if you love driving, 3.0tdi is the best choice between the merc and audi.

No comparison mate -

Audi A4 3.0 TDI - 240bhp/500NM
0-62mph - 6.2sec

Mercedes C250 CDI - 204bhp/500NM
0-62mph- 7.1sec

Infact, even the higher version (C320 CDI) is slower at around 6.6/7 seconds to the ton

Last edited by PlatzdaTurbo : 22nd March 2011 at 21:47.
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Old 23rd March 2011, 07:13   #22
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

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Originally Posted by PlatzdaTurbo View Post
No comparison mate -

Audi A4 3.0 TDI - 240bhp/500NM
0-62mph - 6.2sec

Mercedes C250 CDI - 204bhp/500NM
0-62mph- 7.1sec

Infact, even the higher version (C320 CDI) is slower at around 6.6/7 seconds to the ton
My bad... completely mixed up with c350 here in the US.
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Old 23rd March 2011, 09:47   #23
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

That Audi 3.0 specimen on the classifieds looks pristine atleast on the pictures. And the specs are staggering!

I have heard that because of the torque, which apparently kicks in at 1500 rpm, makes the merc CDI very easy to drive in the city. Is this true as far as your test experience goes?

How was the comfort inside the car? You think I can go to sleep inside whilst on a 1000km journey and not wake up tired?

Is it right to say that the merc is the best compromise for comfort/interiors/and driving experience - all in one package? The best all-rounder as someone described it earlier on this thread? Or am I getting ahead of myself?

Finally, I have read about a lot of recalls for failed injectors on the 250 CDI in the UK. How long has this car been around in India? What is merc's after sales story in the country? I find it quite strange that there is not a single owner review about this car around here.
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Old 23rd March 2011, 11:39   #24
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

The initial batch of injectors failed. Merc have been replacing them for free
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Old 23rd March 2011, 12:07   #25
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

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Originally Posted by Red Liner View Post
That Audi 3.0 specimen on the classifieds looks pristine atleast on the pictures. And the specs are staggering! - Absolutely. First hand experience

I have heard that because of the torque, which apparently kicks in at 1500 rpm, makes the merc CDI very easy to drive in the city. Is this true as far as your test experience goes?- The torque is well spread throughout the range. But the gearbox is dismal and you also need to drive it yourself to experience the turbo lag which is a problem in bumper to bumper traffic.

How was the comfort inside the car? You think I can go to sleep inside whilst on a 1000km journey and not wake up tired? - A merc on 16s is the most comfortable out of the 3 Germans. Period.

Is it right to say that the merc is the best compromise for comfort/interiors/and driving experience - all in one package? The best all-rounder as someone described it earlier on this thread? Or am I getting ahead of myself?- Strictly comparing the C250 CDI, 320D & A4 2.0 TDI it would be the jack of all trades as it has the best power figures, is comfortable if it runs on 16s and has a fair bit of safety features and tech. The 2.0 TDI Audi,while good to look at and classy inside, is no fun to drive and the 320D while fun to drive is on its way out and the ride is stiff.

Finally, I have read about a lot of recalls for failed injectors on the 250 CDI in the UK. How long has this car been around in India? What is merc's after sales story in the country? I find it quite strange that there is not a single owner review about this car around here. - The C250 CDI IMO is around for about a year now (correct me if wrong).
Merc A.S.S could be described as the most hassling and troublesome of all Europeans as they dont even have a proper secure or B.S.I like package in place.
Have taken the liberty to make it easier for you through whatever i know.
Answered above in bold.
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Old 23rd March 2011, 13:34   #26
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

Thanks Platz. The Merc after sales is worrying me a bit. I will head out for a test drive when I get the time and I intend to test drive all the cars within the 15-35L budget for sure.

How do they still manage to sell their cars inspite of the worrying after-sales? Hasn't anyone questioned this? And does Merc even remotely trying to do anything about it? Considering they've been there the longest, I find this quite strange.
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Old 23rd March 2011, 13:43   #27
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

I agree with everything PlatzdaTurbo said about the three cars. However, I disagree about the after-sales. I've had a smooth, hassle-free experience so far (they even sent a mechanic all the way to Rajkot from Ahmedabad on two separate occasions) and Mercedes does have a MB-Secure insurance package, which I've purchased.
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Old 23rd March 2011, 13:45   #28
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

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Originally Posted by Red Liner View Post
Thanks Platz. The Merc after sales is worrying me a bit. I will head out for a test drive when I get the time and I intend to test drive all the cars within the 15-35L budget for sure.

How do they still manage to sell their cars inspite of the worrying after-sales? Hasn't anyone questioned this? And does Merc even remotely trying to do anything about it? Considering they've been there the longest, I find this quite strange.

You sort of answered that 1 yourself. Precisely because they have been there a lot longer than the others, Mercedes Benz enjoy a brand image that no one else commands in this nation. I am not a merc fan by any means, far from it, yet it is a fact that every individual who wants to make it big dreams of making loads of money, owning great houses/properties and finally ,buying a MERCEDES BENZ. Though it is not as drastic and 1 sided as before,the market having opened up so much, you wont hear as many people saying 'I want to own a BMW one day or an Audi'. On the contrary , with mercs, this statement is common.
Also for any layman who is not a petrol-head but has loads of cash to splurge, and wants to make a social statement ,you can most likely expect him to go for a Merc at times without even considering others. At the end of the day, all he cares about is making a statement and he is well aware that the 3-pointed star does it best in our nation. I repeat, you see tons of exceptions to this rule in the last half a decade since other players have entered & awareness has grown yet i would say that merc enjoys a certain monopoly in this category.
In India > Study hard > make it big > get settled > huge bank balance > buy a Merc
They are well aware of this by now and hence i doubt they are even trying to fix whatever issues customers or prospective customers have pointed out. How else would 1 explain no BSI-like package or any Secure plan after so many years of being around??

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Old 23rd March 2011, 13:52   #29
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

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How else would 1 explain no BSI-like package or any Secure plan after so many years of being around??
I believe certain Mercedes dealers have begun offering a "Star Care" 3-year maintenance package complimentary with select models to lure customers away from BMW's BSI proposition. A friend recently bought a C200 CGI with one such package thrown in for free, implying no maintenance costs for 3 years. No idea about terms and conditions.
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Old 23rd March 2011, 13:57   #30
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Default Re: Moving on from the Mercedes C250

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I believe certain Mercedes dealers have begun offering a "Star Care" 3-year maintenance package complimentary with select models to lure customers away from BMW's BSI proposition. A friend recently bought a C200 CGI with one such package thrown in for free, implying no maintenance costs for 3 years. No idea about terms and conditions.

A C250 CDI that a friend opted for around 4 months ago came with nothing at all ! Standard warranty. Within the first week itself his dad managed to get the car squashed from the rear and apparently they had to shell out a bomb for it ! Highly discouraging
Besides, they actually thought this '3 year plan' business would lure people away from something as meticulous as the BSI ?

Last edited by PlatzdaTurbo : 23rd March 2011 at 13:59.
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