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Second Time a Charm ... New C300 Sport is Great.

Edmunds.com logo Edmunds.com 8/30/2015 Stan Holz

This is my second 2015 C300. Why did I own two? Because the first one, an early 8/14 build, had so many issues that I worked out a deal with MB-USA and my dealer to trade it in and order a new car. I lost some money, but did wind up with a very fair deal and a much better car.I have owned my new C300 Sport since April, now have over 5, 000 miles on it, and it has been truly exceptional. What's good? Well, the front seating is very adjustable and easy to find a sweet spot in. Headroom and legroom are excellent, the huge display screen is always visible and free from glare, the controls ... once you get used to them ... are very usable. The Burmester sound system is much better than average, but can be a bit heavy on bass response. The touchpad is unique, and not always the easiest way to navigate the interface. Luckily, a more conventional control wheel is right under the pad and works well. The quality of the interior is truly impressive, with nice touches and decent storage, especially under the large console storage compartment. That console is large because there's no shift lever there. Mercedes opts to place the shifter on the steering column. This is strange but, after you get used to it, very simple to use. The glove box is large, but very awkward to access due to the design of its door.I need AWD where I live, and the 4Matic system works seamlessly. Fuel mileage with the turbo 4 easily tops 30 mpg on most roads. Even local driving nets me high 20's .. and the car's computer readout is actually accurate. The little 4 is quick as well, turning 0-60 times in the low 6 second range. Quite impressive.The trunk is reasonably large, but not best in class. There is no spare tire or jack in there, since the car uses run flat tires. The rear seats can be folded flat, and break into three sections.Visibility is fairly good all around. I have the blind spot assist, and it works very well on this car. It will beep if you put on your turn signal while a car is in its range, and always gives a visible alert when it detects a car to the side. The rear view camera is effective with the usual array of guidance lines. It does not however, provide any audible warning if you're too close to an object. As far as warnings, this car has no open door or open trunk warning light display. It will give a confusing alert about putting the car in Park when you start driving, but nothing else. I find this very odd. Another odd feature is the lack of an odometer readout on the digital speedometer screen. If you want to see the odometer, you have to scroll to another screen. I've never had a car that didn't display the odometer by default.Headlights are very good. I have the LED lights, but I've been told the adaptive lighting is even better. Windshield wipers are effective, and the washers use a three nozzle system which is much better than most other cars.Ride comfort is not one of this car's strong points. Whether you have the base or sport suspension package, the ride is stiff and can feel harsh over rough surfaces. It takes pavement breaks or potholes to unsettle the car, but there isn't much suspension compliance when the road gets coarse. The run flat tires are at least partially responsible for this, and I have been told that switching to standard tires makes a big difference. Handling is very good, with minimal body roll through tight turns. The steering is fairly quick and light, with some feedback through the wheel. Agility control can be used to alter the car's responses; by changing throttle mapping, transmission shift points, and steering feel. With the Airmatic suspension option, it will also alter the feel of the suspension ... but this doesn't work with the standard steel suspension.I have the Keyless Go key fob system. Touch the inside of any door handle and the car unlocks, touch the outside and the car locks. Touch the ignition button, and the car starts or turns off. With a Mercedes smartphone app, you can also lock or unlock remotely, and even send navigation points to the car from your phone or computer. (This requires MBrace, which cost extra after a 6 month trial period.) I had some problems with intermittent operation of Keyless Go, and on both cars I owned. Sometimes the fob just would not be recognized, leaving me standing beside the car unable to get in. After a minute or so, the system would reset itself and work normally again. Finally, after many complaints, Mercedes came up with a software upgrade which I had my dealer install in July. Since then, I have had no further issues with Keyless Go. With all these advanced electronics, Mercedes still will not link the key fob to the memory, so opening the car with the fob will not trigger the seat or radio memory functions. Overall, this is an attractive and excellent performing car. It has its quirks, but it is a heck of a car.

Average Rating : 5

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