The 2002 Mercedes-Benz C-Class covers several areas within one family. It consists of a sedan, coupe, and a wagon. The sport coupe, which is actually a hatchback, is equipped with the same supercharged 2.3-liter, 192-horsepower engine that powers the SLK 230 roadster, which is mated with a six-speed manual transmission. Affectionately called the ""Baby Benz,"" this coupe has a long list of standard features and desirable options. The sedans, C230 and C240, were introduced in 2001, have powerful engines mated with standard six-speed manual transmissions or optional five-speed automatic transmissions. The sedans are plush with luxury features, from the optional leather upholstery to the high-technology convenience and safety features. The AMG sedan has a supercharged 3.3-liter V-6 engine that can propel it from zero to 60 mph in five seconds. The C320 Sport Wagon has the same features as the C320 sedan wrapped in a four-door hatchback skin.
Body Styles: sedan, coupe, wagon
Engines: 2.3-liter four-cylinder, 2.6-liter V-6, 3.2-liter V-6
Transmissions: six-speed manual, five-speed automatic
Models: Mercedes-Benz C230, Mercedes-Benz C240, Mercedes-Benz C32 AMG, Mercedes-Benz C320
The 2002 Mercedes-Benz C-Class introduces the C320 wagon and the C32 AMG sedan. All sedans received new engines, more interior space, and a more youthful interior and exterior design.
Standard features for the 2002 Mercedes-Benz C-Class include 16-inch aluminum alloy wheels, power windows, rear defogger, power automatic dimming body-colored door mirrors, speed-sensitive power steering, cruise control, power locks, universal garage door transmitter, privacy glass, body side molding, remote keyless entry, and body-colored bumpers. Furthermore, it is sleek, classy, and smooth. The wedge-shaped styling features a steep angle to the windshield and back window. The emblem is mounted atop the front hood, while the headlights and turn signals have an elliptical shape, and the body moldings and classic Mercedes-Benz grille gives this car a bold look.
All members of the 2002 Mercedes-Benz C-Class family share the same interior standard features. This car has dual-zone automatic air-conditioning, climate control, tilt/telescoping steering wheel with audio and climate controls, Bluetooth, voice-activated navigation system, bucket front seats, split bench rear seat, automatic dimming rear view mirror, and a Bose sound system. It has optional leather upholstery. The power front seats are firm, but some people may find that the lumbar support needs to be more substantial. The rear seats are roomy if the front seats are not more than halfway back. The rear seats of the C320 seats two people comfortably, but entry/exit can challenging. The trunk as a cargo capacity of 12 cubic feet and the shape of the trunk is such that it will hold more than what the 120-cubic foot label implies. The wagon has a maximum cargo capacity of 63.6 cubic feet, which is 15 cubic feet more than the BMW B-Series wagon.
Performance & Handling
The base engine for the 2002 Mercedes-Benz C-Class is a 2.3-liter, four-cylinder engine that makes 192 horsepower and 200 lb-ft of torque. The C240 get a 2.6-liter V-6 engine that creates 168 horsepower and the C320 wagon get a 3.2-liter V-6 engine that makes 215 horsepower. The C32 is powered by a 3.2-liter supercharged V-6 engine that makes 349 horsepower and 332 lb-ft of torque. Consumers can get these engines mated with a six-speed manual transmission or a five-speed automatic with TouchShift, which will allow manually shifting gears when needed. The C320 is a precise, fully capable and rewarding road machine, but it has a few irritating features. Rather than a full set of gauges, for instance, the driver must click through a sequence of electronic displays to get such information as coolant temperature. Ride quality is firm but highly pleasing in the models equipped with the base suspension system. The models with sport suspensions produced a stiffer ride, but still quite comfortable. The suspension and shock absorbers in the sedan smooth out bumps on rough pavement. For passing and merging, the automatic transmission reacts quickly and almost seamlessly and the steering is responsive and accurate. The C240’s manual transmission feels almost underpowered, although acceleration was still adequate for highway and city driving.
Safety features for the 2002 Mercedes-Benz C-Class include dual-stage front seat airbags, side-impact airbags, and side-curtain airbags for front and rear passengers. It also has BabySmart technology to deactivate the airbags if it senses a child safety seat, anti-lock brakes, and an anti-theft alarm system. The C240 and C320 sedans get electronic stability control and traction control. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave this car a ""Good"" rating for frontal offset crash testing.
EPA Fuel Economy
Mercedes-Benz C230: 19/29 mpg city/highway
Mercedes-Benz C240: 17/26 mpg city/highway
Mercedes-Benz C32 AMG: 17/22 mpg city/highway
Mercedes-Benz C320 Wagon: 19/25 mpg city/highway
Mercedes-Benz C320 Sedan: 19/25 mpg city/highway
- Good acceleration
- Good build quality
- Lots of safety features
- Classy, luxurious styling
- Mercedes-Benz prestige
You Won't Like
- Can be pricey
- Not much rear seat room in the sedans
The solid performance, beautiful interior, and name recognition.
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