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2011 Mercedes-Benz C-Class

Overview
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2011 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Review

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For many, the Mercedes-Benz name represents the pinnacle of automotive design and good taste. While they may not have the means to climb into a new S-Class, the upwardly mobile still have a shot at joining the exclusive M-B club without breaking the bank. Mercedes-Benz' most affordable offering, the 2011 C-Class, comes loaded with style and content. Starting around $35,000, the C-Class must contend with the likes of the Audi A4, Infiniti G37 and Cadillac CTS. And while some will note the C-Class lacks such technological gadgets as adaptive cruise control and adaptive headlights, it is still a lot of car for the money. More importantly, it is a lot of Mercedes-Benz for the money.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you desire a reasonably-priced premium luxury car guaranteed to impress the neighbors, but still require a functioning sedan for clients and family, the C-Class has you covered.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If bang for the buck is more important than the Mercedes-Benz name, makes from Audi, Infiniti, Lexus and even Hyundai provide more features for about the same or less money.

What's New for 2011

For 2011, C-Class Sport models gain LED daytime running lights (DRLs) and black inlays around the headlamps. All C-Class Sedans come with a new headlamp switch and ESP controls relocated to the instrument cluster.

Driving the C-Class

Driving Impressions In the Luxury trim, the C300 delivers an enjoyable ride, responsive handling and a quiet cabin. Acceleration with the 3.0-liter V6 is brisk and passing power is ample, even at...

high speeds. In Sport trim a six-speed manual transmission brings out the C300's playful side, making us wish for more aggressively bolstered front seats. The high tech Agility Control, which selectively stiffens or softens the shocks in response to road conditions and steering input, performed as promised. Like the C300 Sport, the C350 rides on larger tires and sits about an inch closer to the ground. While handling is improved over the Luxury model, ride comfort is somewhat diminished and cabin noise levels see a slight increase. The 3.5-liter V6 packs a bit more punch than the base engine, but does not offer a manual transmission, saddled instead with a seven-speed automatic with manual shift feature. Unfortunately, the sometimes slow-to-come shift points often make it more enjoyable to just leave the lever in the "D" position.

Panoramic Glass Sunroof
When open, the roof exposes half the cabin to the open air and, when closed, delivers equal quantities of sunlight to front and rear passengers.

harman/kardon Audio
With 450-watts, 12-speakers and surround sound LOGIC7 technology, the system is good enough on its own. Add in a six-gigabyte storage unit for uploading songs, voice control and PCMCIA slot, and the C-Class delivers one of the most advanced audio systems in its class.

2011 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Details
Interior

A blend of the old with the new best describes the C-Class interior. Optional leather seating and tasteful wood inlays surround the cabin, but the power-extendable LCD display screen and multifunctional central controller are far from traditional. The front seats are wide and somewhat flat, which is fine for the Luxury model but definitely lacking in the support that would be appropriate for the Sport. The optional panoramic glass sunroof opens the C-Class interior, making it feel larger and more airy. A few oddities stand out, namely the less-than-intuitive steering-wheel controls for the information screens and audio system.

Exterior

The once-sedate C-Class comes alive with eye-catching sheetmetal and two different grille designs (one for Luxury, the other for Sport). Following the styling of the elegant S-Class, the C-Class appears more on design's cutting edge. A long wheelbase and body give the car a substantial road presence as well as adult-sized interior dimensions. Mercedes-Benz loyalists will quickly notice the Sport model's transference of the three-pointed Mercedes-Benz star from the hood to the grille, a first for a Mercedes-Benz sedan. Racy alloy wheels, a lowered suspension and AMG-inspired lower bodywork complete the Sport model's aggressive look.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Standard features for the 2011 C-Class include a power sunroof, eight-way power front seats with manual lumbar control, Bluetooth connectivity, eight speaker 100-watt sound system with auxiliary input jack, 17-inch alloy wheels, agility control selective dampening suspension, dual-zone automatic climate control, central controller and a motorized LCD display. The C300 Sport features a six-speed manual transmission, while the 300 Luxury and 350 Sport have a seven-speed automatic. Standard safety features include eight airbags, adaptive braking, traction and stability control, active front head restraints and extensive use of high-strength steel.

Optional Equipment

Among the more noteworthy options are Mercedes-Benz' 4MATIC all-wheel drive system (C300 models only), DVD navigation, 450-watt harman/kardon LOGIC7 surround sound audio with iPod connectivity and a six-gigabyte music storage register, Keyless Go, leather seating, panoramic glass sunroof, bi-xenon headlamps, universal media interface, a rear sunshade and 18-inch alloy wheels. The Dynamic Handling Package adds an active dampening suspension, along with faster speed-sensitive steering and 18-inch alloy wheels. Standard on the C350 and optional on the C300 are auto-dimming power folding side mirrors, 10-way driver's memory seat, a power adjustable steering wheel, heated front seats, SIRIUS Satellite Radio, rain-sensing wipers and split-folding rear seats.

Under the Hood

For most C-Class drivers, the 3.0-liter V6 should prove more than adequate. With 228-horsepower and ample torque, this engine delivers a nice balance between fuel economy and performance, taking only 7.1 seconds to go from zero to 60 miles per hour. Although the C350's 3.5-liter V6 delivers 40 more horsepower and shaves one second from the C's zero-to-60 time, it costs some $6,000 more than the C300 and offers neither the manual transmission nor the 4MATIC option.

3.0-liter V6
228 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
221 lb.-ft. of torque @ 2700-5000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/26 (gasoline), 13/19 (E85, automatic), 17/24 (4MATIC)

3.5-liter V6
268 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
258 lb.-ft. of torque @ 2400-5500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/25

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2011 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.2
Out of 10

Based on 262 Ratings for the 2008 - 2014 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.1/10
    Quality
    9.4/10
  • Reliability
    9.5/10
    Performance
    9.3/10
  • Comfort
    9.2/10
    Styling
    9.4/10

A Myth

By on Saturday, October 11, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 27,000

10 2.0
overall rating 2 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
2/10
Value
2/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
3/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
4/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"Purchased this car brand new as a retirement "gift" to myself.It broke down twice with electrical problems within the first five thousand miles and had to be towed each time.Three of the four tires developed "bubbles" within the first three thousand miles...obviously defective.The control(s)for the interior electronics are overly complicated and just downright annoying.The navigation system is the worst I have ever seen. Small trunk. The AWD and suspension keep the car hugging the road in all weather conditions. The overall ride and handling is very good.Gas(premium)mileage very good...better than posted. Transmission shifts flawlessly. Engine and transmission virtually silent on the road. Keep in mind when purchasing any Mercedes that preventative maintenance and repair costs are astronomical."

6 people out of 9 found this review helpful

My First Merecedes

By on Wednesday, October 08, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 15,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Look, Gas mileage and power"

Cons: "Its a coupe low setting as expected."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"First let me say that i am a Honda/Toyota Person, reason they have always been great to me. We started looking for a luxury coupe and looked at the Accord and Lexus, Acura, Saab and we came across the C250. The look and feel of the car just won us over. I have a friend that really loves the Merecedes brand and i researched as much as i could and we bought a 13 slighly used with 12k miles. We took it out recently for a 4 day trip, 1500 miles and i fely compelded to review the car. I ran it in the E mode got as high as 38mpg but with mixed driving we average 34mpg. Driving the car in the mountains of Wv and Va with the cruise set to 78 i noticed not one time did it down shift to maintain the speed and it did not vary. That wand the way this car drives and handles we just loved the car. So far we are really impressed with it."

4 people out of 7 found this review helpful

awesome handling..

By on Saturday, October 04, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 55,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"i bought this car used 40000mi...it drives and handles great it feels really tight and grips the road great....the brakes are the best i have ever had in a car. i have close to 60000 and still have lots of pad the only thing that is hard to get used to is that it sits low to the ground and getting out is noticeable that your sitting low. love the looks and driving feel of this car ...it handles better than my 2009 Lexus es350...the Lexus has a very soft ride"

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

One of five MBs I've owned

By on Wednesday, October 01, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 16,500

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
6/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Good auto with decent gas mileage"

Cons: "Turbo lag"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"Only gripe is the fact that the turbo takes a second or two to spool up. Difficult in an emergency. Otherwise, a good solid car."

2 people out of 4 found this review helpful

First Benz

By on Monday, September 29, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 10,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Good price, fun to drive, turns heads, comfortable"

Cons: "Seems like there are lots of C250s out there."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This car was bought to replace a Lexus IS 250. While looking at IS 250 F she decided to look at the MB dealership. We found this little gem and have been quite pleased since. We also have a 3 series BMW. This car is not as quick as the BMW but it has long legs and once you are moving it does not waste any time getting into triple digits on the speedo. It is bigger than the Lexus but not to big. We did not want a large car. I have been impressed with the Nav system and the link to our phones. I also have been very impressed with the mileage. I tend to drive hard and fast. This car has not disappointed the gear head in me. Of course I always want more power and I think in a few years we will move up to the larger C350 but until then, I will be enjoying this little gem."

2 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Fun to drive, sporty luxurious looks

By on Friday, September 19, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 16,500

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Very resonsive driving. Power of a 6."

Cons: "MB tex a/k/a vinyl. Small if it's the only car."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"V6 so there's real power when needed. Benz quality fit and finish. Absolutely silent when stopped. Black with tan interior; several have commented how good it looks (it does)."

14 people out of 23 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?