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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am looking at purchasing a C230K Sedan soon.

I am having quite a difficult time choosing between the manual transmission or the automatic transmission.

Any drivers out there with strong feelings either way?

Thanks
 

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BTW, if you're getting a brand new C230WZ, I don't think you have a choice. I was told my MB that 2003 was the last year of the 6spd (which is why we bought a 2003 brand new in Sept as opposed to a 2004).
 

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Automatic

With the electronic automatic transmision, you can shift it like a manual, except you don't use the clutch, it is really pretty cool.
 

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6 speed

I think a clutch and a shifter are true driving. An automatic with the ability to move up and down is not real manual driving. I love going through the gears with a clutch..Also save over $1500 to have more fun.

The c240 is designed for an automatic.
 

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Re: Automatic

magicmercedes said:
With the electronic automatic transmision, you can shift it like a manual, except you don't use the clutch, it is really pretty cool.
I disagree. To me, the long lag between moving the lever and the actual shift makes the feature totally useless.
 

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C230:Manual or Automatic

Hi,

I agree with Lynn re the automatic shift lag. You can shift manually up to the redline but the txn shifts much slower than a good power-shifter like me can shift manually. The automatic is so good though that you can just plant it and watch the car shift up through the gear. It seems to shift around 5000 or so. Better use the summer position S and not the W for winter as it shifts from 2nd gear and is slower. One feature that I do like with the auto is that I can manually shift down going into a long steep slope in the road such as on the Malahat route which winds up and down into Victoria,B.C. This saves your brakes and all that brake dust. Also, if you have the car set on cruise control and you are descending a long downhill stretch, the auto will downshift automatically. While you can't beat the fun with the 6 speeder, one has to compromise in life--my wife needs to drive it too and is hopeless with a clutch/gearshift. It is certainly better than any of the other auto txns i have been bless with over the years.
PS: A good driver can shift a standard transmission through the gears without using the clutch. It takes practice but if you rush it or under-rev, you take out the odd selector fork in the txn.

cheers to all.

Al :)
 

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"PS: A good driver can shift a standard transmission through the gears without using the clutch. It takes practice but if you rush it or under-rev, you take out the odd selector fork in the txn. "

8O What? You understand what the clutch is there for right...every car has a clutch(es) But if you can shift a manual sans clutch, more power to you.
 

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On my car, I can shift without the clutch. But there's only one problem... I can only do it at 1000rpm! (up or down!) So it's useful only when slowing down.
 

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We have a 2003 230k sedan with an automatic transmission. I am convinced that the transmission is completely brain-dead. My wife wouldn't even hear of a manual, though (and i'm lazy anyway).

Please get a manual if at all possible.
 

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C230 coupe: Manual or Automatic

While one does not usually try to shift a manual without the clutch, and it is possible with any decent transmission, it is not recommended anyway. The underlying point is this: a driver who knows WHEN to shift up and down the gears and does not just shift and let the car 'lug' along, can expect a longer 'living' drivetrain. Fullstop! For those who have shifted transmissions before synchomesh became commonplace, it was necessary to double clutch, to steady the lay shaft and not to ram the gearshift from gear to gear. You had to drive cars in those days. Now they drive you!!! Modern manuals are pretty easy to use and most good ones are not baulky either. I have driven the 6 speed C230. It is excellent. I power-shifted it up the range and scared the $%^&*( out of the saleman!! On my old 1950 Austin with a hydraulic clutch, its shifts were an excercise in persistent negotiation with the gearshift lever, thus, I often shifted gears at proper rev speed without the cluth to obviate always using the stupid handle-like appendage hanging from the steering column. I guess this is 'greek' to a lot of you guys. But that is auto history.
Enjoy a great car, one of the best buys on the road today.

AL 8)
 

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Hey, oneoldkid,

I'm going to take the other side of this one. I get real annoyed by all of the "real driving experience" stories of having a manual. If that's true, they should be driving a topless car with their leather driving gloves on!

As with anything in life, there are good and bad points here. The only ones that matter are the ones thay YOU care about, not us. I chose the auto because at 46, I'm way past the age of wanting to exercise my left leg 1000 times a day. I also disagree with Lynn (for probably the FIRST time in my life!) on the lag issue. The lag seems longer to them because IMO they are doing nothing with their left leg and right arm. I find it responsive enough to meet my needs. I do agree that I wish it didn't automatically upshift after a certain RPM was reached. As for winter mode driving, while it's true that it starts out in second, if you hammer the accelerator all the way down, it figures out that you want that power and it jumps into first and shifts just like it would in standard mode.

Again, decide what is best for you. I think every one of us love our Benz because we bought what WE wanted, not what was voted the best by others. Good luck, and let us all know.

Tim 8)
 

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Have you driven any steptronic, tiptronics or whatever they named it for other cars? They responed much better than the "touch shift" in MB. I have an auto so I can't agree more with what Lynn said. If you are into manual, don't even try it with the touch shift.

surfee93, there is 6sp manual for 2004.5 C230 sport sedan since I saw it on the show room floor personally. I think your salesperson just want to move those '03 off the floor.

I'm happy with my C230 auto even though I'm a manual person. And personally, I think an auto sedan is going to have a better resale value but you just have to decide on one that fits you and either way, I think you'll be happy.



tsberkey said:
Hey, oneoldkid,

I'm going to take the other side of this one. I get real annoyed by all of the "real driving experience" stories of having a manual. If that's true, they should be driving a topless car with their leather driving gloves on!

As with anything in life, there are good and bad points here. The only ones that matter are the ones thay YOU care about, not us. I chose the auto because at 46, I'm way past the age of wanting to exercise my left leg 1000 times a day. I also disagree with Lynn (for probably the FIRST time in my life!) on the lag issue. The lag seems longer to them because IMO they are doing nothing with their left leg and right arm. I find it responsive enough to meet my needs. I do agree that I wish it didn't automatically upshift after a certain RPM was reached. As for winter mode driving, while it's true that it starts out in second, if you hammer the accelerator all the way down, it figures out that you want that power and it jumps into first and shifts just like it would in standard mode.

Again, decide what is best for you. I think every one of us love our Benz because we bought what WE wanted, not what was voted the best by others. Good luck, and let us all know.

Tim 8)
 

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In my younger days I loved to shift em up and shift em down
stab the clutch stir the stick and let it fly
lots of fun and I would never begrudge anyone the same
but times have changed for me
I do enjoy the occasional romp with the gear box (minus the clutch)
but I find more often I like to simply put my foot down and let this lovely piece of work do it's thing
this is by far the sweetest auto-tranny I've ever had the pleasure of driving
shifts for the economy minded or when asked nicely winds up and down the gears like silk absolutely rocketing you foreward
and in stop and go traffic how could you want anything else
MB obviously knows what they have here as it can be found in a variety of models even in (I believe) in the new Chrysler Crossfire
and IMHO I believe the 1.8 and this trans are a perfect match- perfect!
 

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I ordered my 2003 1.8 with the six speed purposely, and waited many weeks for it to arrive. I drove both the 2.3 and the 1.8 with the automatic, but they just didn't quite have what I wanted. Plus, any four cylinder engine requires a stickshift IMHO.

By happy chance, when my 230 went in for its first Service A, the dealership gave me a C-320 Sport Coupe as a loaner. I had no performance problems with the six cylinder and the automatic, so I can recommend the auto tranny, just not with the four cylinder engine.

Oh, I wouldn't get it with the baby six that comes in the C-240 series, either. Test drove one of those as well to see if I wanted four doors, but had the same lack of "oomph" problems.
 

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Hi,

I have the six speed and would not trade it for the world!! I love driving stick and always have; regardless of driving conditions. I think the thing you have to ask yourself is how passionate will you be driving stick in stop and go traffic or several inches of snow? Maybe that will help you decide. But I completely agree with several members on the forum; driving stick give me more a feeling that I am "commanding" my car, rather than just driving it! But, that's just my opinion.

Good Luck!!
 

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Actually, I have. I have a Hyundai Santa Fe that has it. I have wanted an auto like this for over two decades. Ever since I had my VW Scirocco w/ auto transmission, I realized that you could have the best of both worlds. You could have a car that was a blast to drive but still not have to shift on your own when you didn't want to. As a matter of fact, once I test drove the Hyundai, it became a requirement for my SUV purchase to have this type of auto tranny. I love it that much.

I would not pretend to say that an auto gives the exact same driving "feel" as the manual, especially if the manual is well engineered, as the MB one is. I just feel that I don't want to have to work so hard at driving, especially in the city. Maybe when I was younger...

Hey, nukukun:
I have trouble believing you have driven the supercharged-4 that the 230 coupe has with an auto. This car is many things, but under-powered is not one of them. Unless you want to be one of those nitrous-powered acuras that you see in the fast and the furious, or something. Next time you take your car in for service, ask to drive one. If you look on the MB website, you will notice that the 0-60 time is only .5 second slower with the auto! Let me know what you think. I imagine you will be (pleasantly) surprised.

Tim 8)

AlphaForceX said:
Have you driven any steptronic, tiptronics or whatever they named it for other cars? They responed much better than the "touch shift" in MB. I have an auto so I can't agree more with what Lynn said. If you are into manual, don't even try it with the touch shift.

surfee93, there is 6sp manual for 2004.5 C230 sport sedan since I saw it on the show room floor personally. I think your salesperson just want to move those '03 off the floor.

I'm happy with my C230 auto even though I'm a manual person. And personally, I think an auto sedan is going to have a better resale value but you just have to decide on one that fits you and either way, I think you'll be happy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
My New C230WZ !!!

Well, thank you all for all of your input! It seems that some are very happy with their manuals and some are very happy with the automatics.

I finally decided! There was a great WZ on the showroom floor but my wife couldn't get comfortable in the drivers seat without the 10 way power seats so we had to order one. I put the order in today and I am already eagerly waiting my new car!!!

My new C230WZ Kompresser
Mars Red
Charcoal Leather Inserts
CD Changer
Premium Sound
Heated Front Seats
Sunroof Package
Comfort Package (for the 10 way power seats)
Rear Seat Package
Lighting Package
.....and the moment you all have been waiting for....
Automatic (My wife would kill a manual and I think that driving in the city would kill me and I didn't find the performance to be too much different)

I learned that the new WZ is a sportier version of the C230K. The wheels in the rear are wider than the wheels in the front. The car is a bit lower and the interior is sported up a bit like the coupe.

Let me know if there is anything I should remove from my car before they start building it!!! I am not sure about the lighting package but it sure looks cool when the blue headlights come towards me at night :)
 

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Re: My New C230WZ !!!

Are you sure on the color?
You may want to consider Ash leather as well.
I'll remove the CD changer/Premium sound and
install an aftermarket one but it depends on how picky
you are with audio system.

Whatever you do, KEEP the Xenons!!! You'll regret not
having it. Aftermarket ones can easily run you over $1k
+ installation! Besides, it looks cool and bright at night.
IMO, it well worths the money!


oneoldkid said:
My new C230WZ Kompresser
Mars Red
Charcoal Leather Inserts
CD Changer
Premium Sound
Heated Front Seats
Sunroof Package
Comfort Package (for the 10 way power seats)
Rear Seat Package
Lighting Package
.....and the moment you all have been waiting for....
Automatic (My wife would kill a manual and I think that driving in the city would kill me and I didn't find the performance to be too much different)

I learned that the new WZ is a sportier version of the C230K. The wheels in the rear are wider than the wheels in the front. The car is a bit lower and the interior is sported up a bit like the coupe.

Let me know if there is anything I should remove from my car before they start building it!!! I am not sure about the lighting package but it sure looks cool when the blue headlights come towards me at night :)
 

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AlphaForceX said:
Have you driven any steptronic, tiptronics or whatever they named it for other cars? They responed much better than the "touch shift" in MB. I have an auto so I can't agree more with what Lynn said. If you are into manual, don't even try it with the touch shift.

surfee93, there is 6sp manual for 2004.5 C230 sport sedan since I saw it on the show room floor personally. I think your salesperson just want to move those '03 off the floor.
Regarding the '03 6spd availabity. The dealership where I bought the car is not the dealership that told me that the 6spd was no longer available for '04. Curiosity got the best of me, and I called every MB dealership here in San Diego as well as one in Irvine. All of them told me that the 6spd for '04 models is only available on the coupe.

One dealership said that they do have one on their showroom floor, but it's an '03. Are you sure the one you saw on the floor was an '03 and not an '04? I bought my '03 brand new almost 3 months ago. To be honest, to me, the only difference between an '03 C230WZMT and an '04 C230WZMT is the fact that the dealership gave me $2000 off for any '03 MB, whereas they were only offering $1000 off for any '04 model.

Granted my opinion mainly comes from driving my wife's ML320, but I do not like the MB touch shift. The one on the C230 that we test drove was definitely more responsive than our ML, but even the Acura auto-shifter seems more responsive than the one MB offers.

About a year ago, we almost bought a used (2002 w/ 9k miles on it) M5. I was not even considering the E55 because of "lack of manual transmission" option for it. I think that MB really limits their market by not offering manual on more of their vehicles her in the states. All of my coworkers in Munich say that they rarely see automatic MB's or BMW's. BTW, we decided that buying another house was a much better idea than spending $73k on a car.
 
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