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Old 01-02-2006, 05:38 PM   #1
KIMUTAKU
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Default OT: MB C280 vs Lexus IS350

In the market of a new car soon, trying to see if anyone has opinions or experiences with these cars..

MB C280 elegance - new engine design, 228hp, leather, moonroof, auto, etc, roughly $50000..

IS350 - new design, 306hp, leather, auto, moonroof, etc roughly $52000..

main features needed are power leather seat and moonroof.. it would be nice to have bi-xeon hid, but not a must..

so which one is a better buy? i have no experience with lexus, do they really live up to the famous comment "european quality and japanese reliability"??


maybe the IS250 is a better comparison with the C280?..
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Old 01-02-2006, 07:44 PM   #2
grimbeaver
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Haven't driven the IS myself, but i hear its a pretty good car. Although i'm not a fan of the styling...

As with the MB, from all the C-Class i have driven, i can say they are not on the sporty side of things. Very comfortable and refined cars though.

MB has the class, IS is sportier (and newer), so i guess depends what your looking for in a car...
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Old 01-02-2006, 08:25 PM   #3
KIMUTAKU
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I have driven quite a few c-class too.. both coupes and sedans.. they are very comfortable indeed.. one drawback is that it might be changing style soon.. i personally love the c55, but that's out of the equation.. lol..

anyone owns or has owned a lexus?
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Old 01-02-2006, 08:37 PM   #4
02WHITEDUB
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Go with the Lexus.
You're looking at 'Most-Reliable brand' VS 'Least-Reliable brand' or pretty close to it. Open your Consumer Reports for proof of this statement.
I only refer to MB's of the last 5 or 7 years (I'm sure somebody had a '92 3-series that went 400,000km etc....) because they are embarrassingly unreliable.

YES! The MB is a luxurious, opulent, impressive piece of work. But you can't admire those traits while it sits at the shop. Maybe, if you're lucky you'd get a little Z3 for a loaner..

Other than mountains of empirical evidence backing my position, I have anectodal evidence of this: My boss (the only person I know with a MB) had a ML320 he bought used. He liked to say 'It costs about $600 to start it, but then it's a great vehicle!' Because about a half dozen times, he'd park it at night - no problems - start it in the morning, CEL sometimes, once somethingin the engine (can't remember what) broke when he turned the key, other times it ran like crap. After it had cost him several thousand $ in unscheduled repairs over a year, he sold it and bought a used Lexus RX300. He loves it and it runs like a Toyota - predictably.

Oh, this was funny! I dropped him off to pick up his MB after it was repaired. I left and went back to work. He showed up an hour later in a loaner. They had fixed the problem he went in there for, but as he left the parking lot something entirely unrelated went wrong (again, can't remember what.)

Do yourself a favour. Get the Lexus.
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Old 01-02-2006, 09:40 PM   #5
Clement
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I have to agree with 02WHITEDUB.

I know a few family friends who drive MB E-Classes and it seems like everytime we talk to them their car is in the shop for some sort of repair. No such complaints from my friends who drive IS300s and RX300s.

But go drive the MB and see how you like it, if you love the car and the MB brand prestige, perhaps you won't mind the shop visits as they should be under manufacturer's warranty anyway.
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Old 01-02-2006, 09:46 PM   #6
grimbeaver
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Actually about reliablity, i was about to type it in, but then decided against it. As 02WHITEDUB stated, the M-class (and MB in general) is pretty terrible in those terms, but i'm not sure about the C-class specifically. Reason being, i have a few friends who own C-class (coupes and sedans) and they seem relatively problemless so far. On the other hand, i'm sure Lexus still has much better reliablity.
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Old 01-02-2006, 10:13 PM   #7
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ML class is made in the USA iirc.. =)

i have a 96 c280 at home and it has been good with only regular maintenance work until lately with couple CELs and then a leaking head gasket.. =( (130000 km)..
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Old 01-03-2006, 03:48 AM   #8
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Hmm... regardless of where the Merc is made at... friends I know who owns MB (or parents owning one) have complained at one time or another of their poor service attitude. That's for MB in Vancouver (Broadway) and MB in Richmond... not sure about other places. Although I did hear some nice comments about MB on Boundary.

Compare to that, all Lexus owners have good things to say about their service departments. I think probably the most important part in my car decision is to be able to find a great "home" for services and repairs... (imagine my joy when I learned about Rocket Rally )

But yeah that's my $0.02
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Old 01-03-2006, 04:15 AM   #9
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i don't mean to flip the switch but what about the new BMW 3 series i heard they are amazing cars. i think the IS is over priced considering there is no AWD in that model if i am not mistaken.

and i think teh Legacy is a great car as well if u want luxury get all the triming. my friend just bought the 2.5I and he loves it.

Last edited by Prelude; 01-03-2006 at 04:15 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 01-04-2006, 05:52 PM   #10
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I was actually going to say something about a bmw 5 series but realized they're probably out of your price range-

I'd go with the lexus though, my dad had one a few years ago and it was bulletproof, never a single breakdown, it also has quite a bit more power

Just seems like you get more for your money with the lexus, not that the Mercedes-Benz is a *bad* car (well they have their share of problems..), but it carries a pretty pricey badge
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Old 01-05-2006, 01:07 AM   #11
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thanks for the opinions!

no conclusion until i test drive both tho.. =)
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Old 01-05-2006, 01:50 AM   #12
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The Lexus IS350 is a really nice car with a good amount of power. I work at a Lexus Dealership and drive the car usually everyday. It's very very comfortable and the interior is sporty but classy also. Make sure to get navigation if you do get it...(bluetooth, backup camera etc). You can also get upgraded wheels, they call them spyder rims. They are 18's still like the stock ones but are polished and have a complete different design. The car seems quicker than my stage 2 WRX but a little slower than a stock STI. It also has the auto maneuvering HID headlamps which surprisingly work really well. Overall its an awesome car for around 43-45K.
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