Feature

New cars: Mercedes-Benz C350 Sport

What the critics say about the $38,050 Mercedes-Benz C350 Sport.

The New York Times
The C-Class used to be the low-end Mercedes for “the great unwashed.” But the 2008 version now looks virtually like the midlevel E-Class. Assertive styling accents include the downward-slanting nose and upswept trim lines, and—for the first time—the iconic three-pointed star is set into the front grille. This edition also comes with less body roll and “nearly instantaneous” throttle response.

Road & Track

This popular entry-level luxury sedan doesn’t “mess with success,” adopting plenty of top-of-the-line S-Class styling cues meant to connote excellence. The seven-speed automatic can skip-shift down, from “even something like sixth to second, if appropriate.” But the C350 is still not as stylish as the Audi A4, nor quite as fast as a BMW 3 Series—its two chief competitors.

Car and Driver
Why put a seven-speed transmission on a V6 engine that delivers only 228 hp and 221 pound feet of torque? “We don’t get it.” Suspension and steering were faultless, though the vented front brake rotors are almost an inch smaller than last year’s model. Translation: a “pretty ordinary” braking performance for a sports sedan in this class.

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