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Mercedes-Benz C 32 AMG W203

What else can I get with my money? How about a. Mercedes-Benz C32 AMG

21 February 2013 08:19 Schoeman

Everyone loves a It saves you money, makes you good about yourself and you a great story to tell. So, in most recent installment of our else can I get for my money” series, see if we can help to stimulate some around that very

Today takes us back to the Polo price bracket. the Golf, which we will be to reflect the lower price of the new VII, the Polo is still pitching its value and carefree experience at the R180 000 mark.

means we have R180 000 to a car that is maybe not as reliable, nor in showroom floor condition, but is to offer more driving fun a Polo 1.4 Comfortline.

So what is there that could you away from the German How about a 2002 Mercedes-Benz C32

The W203 C-Class was produced 2000 and 2006, with a presented in 2004, but the AMG W203 was introduced in 2001. It debuted a V6 engine; a departure from the C43 AMG, and was never repeated, as AMG to favour the V8 thereafter.

That mean it was underpowered, because the C43 and subsequent C55 and C63 AMGs, the 3,2-litre V6 the C32 AMG bonnet was not naturally aspirated, and was by a supercharger unit.

Superchargers in a similar fashion to turbochargers in they force air into the chamber to increase total output. But while a turbocharger is by lag at lower revs, the mechanically supercharger is not.

But the lack of lag at a price, as the supercharger is driven by the and steals some of its urge.

the advantages of forced induction are the for turbochargers and superchargers, and for those at Highveld altitudes, it means there is almost no power

Even without this advantage, the C32 AMG is no slouch! The 3,2-litre produces 260 kW and 450 Nm of torque, which is to launch the executive sedan off the and on to 100 km/h in 5.2 seconds.

Back in that was an impressive number: Martin’s V12 Vantage was only breaking the 5.0 second barrier in year.

In 2005 the facelift saw the C32 AMG dropped in favour of a V8 in the form of the C55 It might look newer, and a much better interior, but it the low-end shove of the supercharged V6.

And at altitudes, owners have that the C32 AMG is still quicker the C55 AMG.

For between R130 000 and 000, you could be the proud of a 2002 C32 AMG, and all the pleasures come with that. One Man, One Engine principal is meaning that your will have a plaque is signed by the person that it.

Being an early 2000s the C32 AMG is rear-wheel drive, has a five-speed gearbox and plenty of controls and inside. But it being a performance car that era also means fuel economy is not a pressing

Current owners report 10.5 l/100km is attainable on the road, but that 14 l/100km is far likely, and it is only downhill there if you have a heavy foot.

The interior is also not as as the facelifted models, but because C55 start at R200 000, we have to accept the amber-lighted of the C32 interior.

Unfortunately there are problems than the price of and an aging dash design it comes to owning a first-generation AMG — the possible problems plague the C32 are quite extensive, and

Mercedes-Benz C 32 AMG W203

Electronics are always a problem, and they are annoying, they are not Most common are dials stop working, and heated units that fail due to wear and tear

Under the there are more serious pitfalls.Numerous owners claim the Valeo-built radiator has a nasty to leak, contaminating the transmission glycol. This normally to the need for a new transmission.

There is no fix or detection, except to preemptively the radiator with a later

The supercharger can also be temperamental, out during acceleration. This has attributed to a faulty intercooler which causes too much build-up, forcing the ECU to cut the supercharger to it from being damaged.

If you a good Mercedes-Benz mechanic, these might not be as expensive to as going to the dealer, but it does that your car will be the shop more than

There aren’t that C32 AMGs available on the pre-owned and we are not sure if that is because have been put through a backwards, experienced irreparable failure or because their just simply love too much to sell them of these are equally probable).

But it does mean that we are for choice. Only two are currently on on Autotrader; both are 2002 and both have racked up to 150 000 km. Considering the age and high-stress engine, we not going the private seller and trying to negotiate some of warranty from the dealer you purchase it from.

So: new or used?

time around this is a decision. We would say that the car with a good history and has undergone an assurance check make an excellent value for performance car. But considering there are not too many available, and the C32’s reliability will be a worry, we cannot recommend as a primary car.

As a weekend car, there is no better way to buy cheap thrills, but as a commuter we would be worried we would be spending the majority of our leave at the mechanics.

Last on Thursday, 21 February 2013


Mercedes-Benz C 32 AMG W203
Mercedes-Benz C 32 AMG W203
Mercedes-Benz C 32 AMG W203
Mercedes-Benz C 32 AMG W203

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