Getting firsthand information from an actual car owner is one sure way to get an idea of car performance once it leaves the lot. Autobytel features real consumer reviews that give the unbiased experience of a car.
2002 Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class - Convertible
Pros: Beauty. The car is unusually good looking.
Cons: Space. Cramped even for a convertible.
Advice: Be sure it fits your needs before you buy it. If it does, you will love it.First impression is that there is substance behind the car's incredible beauty. Great engine, brakes, handling. Clever touches with the tilt down in reverse rearview mirror. Good stereo [put the top down, and listen to the engine!]. Smart top mechanism. Little nosedive/tailsquat, body roll is under control. Suspension is well damped and firm. This is a GT, not a sports car. But storage and hauling capacity is in the near sports car range, meaning nearly non-existent. If hauling more than two people is something you do regularly, keep looking, this isn't the car for you. One golf bag is it--you have to meet your playing partner at the course. So consider carefully before committing to a long term relationship. This is a special car, with a distinct personality, in a world with mostly personality-less cars. It will thrill the right owner, but compromising isn't something the CLK does gladly. The backseats are for your briefcase, or a gym bag, or an adult you really don't like. It doesn't squeak and rattle yet, but it probably will. If it doesn't it'll be the first convertible I've spent time in that didn't. But the car is designed to make grins and it does that very well. A sunny day, top down, engine growling, curvy, hilly, smooth road, wow! And if you are stuck in your morning commute, you can dream about a sunny day, top down...you get it. And if traffic is a drag, wait for your opening and jump on it, this car will zoom. It is a gas to drive, it will make you forget about your overdue monthly report. I have an SUV for hauling things, this car is for hauling me. It is one of the most beautiful cars I have ever seen. With the top up, it looks very good--reminiscent of the coupe. With the top down, it's stunningly gorgeous. In my first few days of ownership, I find myself standing in the garage smiling at its lines. It's a pretty thing.
2002 Mercedes-Benz S-Class - S500
Pros: Emphasis on safety
Cons: Low slung spoiler
Advice: Bring a ton of cash.For the last 15 years we have always had at least one Mercedes in our household. The current jet black S-500 Sport is simply the latest and greatest. After surviving two collisions in previous S class models, one a head-on in town and the other a driver's side impact, I'm sure that we will always continue to own one. Safety, comfort and performance merge with one of the best looking packages on the road to provide us with a sense of well-being and confidence. I have driven this car for 11,500 miles without any scheduled service and/or oil change. The auto's computer predicts a service in about 800 miles but the driver's style of driving determines the actual service intervals. Imagine not having to return to the dealership for anything in the first 13 months! What a treat and a great time saver. The air conditioner is top-notch, extremely necessary in the state of Florida. And yet my wife can determine her own climate control and turn on the seat warmer for added comfort. The seat massagers come in handy for my bad back and the voice-activated phone, radio and cd player are convenient and provide for less driver distraction. I only have one complaint. The front spoiler is so low that when parking the vehicle the automatic lowering suspension often rests it on top of the parking divider. This doesn't become obvious until you pull away and the spoiler snags on the divider. Other than that, I am one of the S-500's greatest fans.
2002 Mercedes-Benz C-Class - C32 AMG Sedan
Pros: Combination of extreme performance and luxury sedan amenities
Cons: Nothing, that I could see
Advice: If you are looking for a performance sedan, drive this one firstTo start, I must confess that I do not yet own one of these. It will take me a few months to raise the price of admission, and then I will own one. But, I certainly have test driven one. With 349 hp up high on the tach and 331 lbs/ft of torque down low, this is a performer, plus. The best and quickest way to describe it is as follows: A friend just bought a new Corvette automatic. I drove his car and was really impressed by the 'pull', but thought it not quite a true sports car by my definition. I said that I wished someone would make a car that performs like that, only in a more refined four door sedan. Well, someone has, and that car is the C32 AMG. Refinement is excellent, and makes the BMW M3 feel like driving a tractor! MB managed to put great performance suspension on the C32 without inducing harsh ride or road noise compared with its lesser relatives, the C320 and C240. With a 0-60mph time of 4.9 seconds and a 1/4 mile at about 106, it can give some of the senior Porches something to worry about. But it sacrifices nothing a good sedan should be. Very roomy and comfortable inside, compact outside. In my opinion, this is the undiscovered gem of the year. The only downside is the $50,000 to $55,000 price of admission. But considering that it is a true luxury car that just happens to wipe out Porches, that may actually be a bargain.
2002 Mercedes-Benz M-Class - Base
Pros: The GPS!! It works great, even when a accident blocks the road ahead, hit the detour button, and it gets you around it
Cons: The truck has the smallest coat hanger hook I have ever seen! You cannot even put a sportcoat on a nice hanger on it, plus it is in a terrible spot! The may have thought of everything else, but missed this one big time!
Advice: Get the cd changer and the sunroof for sure!I love the power of the vehicle and the feel on the road, wet or dry. The halogen lights are worth the money as they are so much brighter than any else you have driven. It would be nice if the steering wheel had some sound system controls on it though. Those buttons are somewhat small and a long reach.
2002 Mercedes-Benz M-Class - Base
Pros: My favorite feature on the 2002 ML500 is the new exterior designing and the re-done dash. It looks great! There is more wood, and more chrome, which makes it look all the more classy.
Cons: My least favorite feature would have to be the back of the car, it seems a bit bland, Other than that it looks great!
Advice: If you choose to buy the 2002 ML500, get the GPS screen, you wont regret it.Last September, I purchased a new mercedes C320 for myself. My daughter just graduated high school with outstanding grades, so I decided it was time for her to get a car. After a few weeks she decided on the new ML500. At first I wasnt sure that I wanted my 17 and a half year old daughter to have a car 12,000 dollars more expensive than mine! But my wife, daughter, and I went to the Mercedes Dealership 3 days ago, to look for the ML500. In the back they had one with a Capri Blue exterior, and grey leather, with the burled wood trim. The car had the chrome side steps, sun roof, wood and leather steering wheel, and my favorite...the navigational system. I could tell that my daughter instantly fell inlove. We test drove the car. It runs alot better than the 1999 ML320. The acceleration, braking, and turning have been greatly improved. This ML500 did not have the parktronic system in it though...which I think is something that my daughter will need. She has a tendancy to not concentrate when she is behind the wheel. I ended up purchasing this vehicle. Have only driven my daughters car around a few times (actually my car) But from what I can tell...Its a great car!
2002 Mercedes-Benz C-Class - C230 Coupe
Pros: THE SUNROOF, you have to see it to believe it.
Cons: Rear styling could be better.
Advice: Get the Pan. sunroof and leather (C5 pakage)I am a diehard Volkswagon nut. However when I first saw this car I feel in love. Plain and simple, It was just fun to drive. I had to have it. The one thing I don't like about it is the wait to own one. If you order the leather, which is the only way to go, be prepared to wait, and wait, and wait.
2002 Mercedes-Benz C-Class - C230 Coupe
Pros: scrolling dash information, safety features
Cons: smallish engine
Advice: Ask about all the features and prices before you end negotiationsSafe and stylish. Everything you expect from a Mercedes.