The Mercedes C180 is a long-lasting model within the Mercedes Benz C-Class lineup. For decades, the C180 has been representing the entry-level Mercedes C-Class lineup thanks to a small 4-cylinder engine that aims to achieve efficiency, smoothness, and a small carbon footprint.
Even so, the engine found in the C180 tends to be on the weaker side as it is not exactly fitting for a Mercedes sedan. Design-wise, the C180 does not differ compared to higher-end Mercedes models, bar the AMG models of course. Interior-wise, it is more or less the same story, the only difference can be found on the older models that use a manual over an automatic gearbox.
The C180 also is not the most reliable Mercedes C-Class model out there as it seems to suffer from a myriad of different issues. The most common ones are down the MAF sensor, the electricals, the steering system, and the transmission.
The C180 tends to cost a bit less when compared to stronger 4-cylinder and especially 6-cylinder engines. As such, you will be able to find a better equipped C180 with fewer miles on the clock for as much money as a higher mileage C350 with more miles. Practicality is completely the same as with every other C-Class model, bar the hybrid of course.
Mercedes C180 – The powertrain
As mentioned in the beginning, the C180 is not really a heavy hitter when it comes to power as it only produces up to 170hp in the very latest W206 C-Class. As such, the C180 comes with either a 1.5, a 1.6, or a 1.8L 4-cylinder engine with power ranging from 130hp to 170hp depending on the model year.
Early C180 models come with a manual while the latest few models come with either the Mercedes proprietary 7G-Tronic gearbox or the Mercedes 9G-Tronic gearbox. The C180 was always a rear-wheel-drive car which does not make it all that dynamic as that was never the intention with the C-Class anyway.
The C180 is able to return up to 45MPG on average which is not all that much better when compared to the C200, the C220, or even the C350. This means that the C180 is not really a logical choice as it lacks power while also not being all that efficient in the process.
Your driving habits play a larger role when it comes to efficiency, more so than the manufacturer’s MPG ratings.
Mercedes C180 – Design and chassis
The Mercedes Bent C180 looks more or less identical to all the non-AMG C-Class models. The W204 Mercedes C180 looks best when in post-facelift form and equipped with the Mercedes AMG package. The W204 is on the older side at the moment, but the post-facelift W204 is acceptable.
The W205 C180 is now one of the most popular used luxury car options as it combines great value and relatively contemporary technology. The W205 is also best in post-facelift form while the pre-facelift model is also more than enough for most people.
The current W206 C180 is indeed the most technologically advanced C180 model yet while also being the one with the highest horsepower output. The C180 has always been a comfortable luxury cruiser which means that you should not expect it to be all that dynamic.
Mercedes C180 – Reliability and common issues
The C180 is not the most reliable Mercedes C-Class model judging by the majority of reliability charts and surveys. The C180 tends to be placed on the lower end of most compact sedan lists, just like the BMW 3-Series, and the Audi A4.
However, these have changed in recent times and both the Audi and BMW are similar. Even so, the most common C180 issues are down to the MAF sensors, the electronics, the steering system, the transmission, or even sometimes the active driving sensors and increased levels of vibrations while driving.
More about Mercedes C180 common issues.
Mercedes C180 – Value and practicality
As far as value is concerned, it’s hard to say no to the C180 as it offers a very luxurious, desirable, and enjoyable platform at a discounted price. The price may not be as low as some would want with the newer Mercedes C180 generations, but they are still lower when compared to higher-end C-Classes.
Practicality-wise, the C180 is as good as every other C-Class out there, except for the hybrids as they typically tend to sacrifice cargo space for the batteries.
Which Mercedes C180 should I buy?
You should go for either the W204, the W205, or the brand new W206. Given the fact that the W206 is beyond reach for most customers out there, you should focus your attention on the W205. The W205 is an attractive proposition both in pre-facelift and in post-facelift form as the differences between the two are not all that massive.
On the other hand, the differences between the pre and post-facelift versions of the W204 are a lot more noticeable which means that the post-facelift W204 C180 is a lot better than the pre-facelift C180.
Is the Mercedes C180 slow?
It depends on what you typically drive as some people deem 150hp as more than enough. To be frank, 150hp is enough for a typical commuter car as there is no need for anyone to go fast through a city. However, the C-Class is not exactly a lightweight car anymore which means that if you are familiar with higher horsepower cars, you will not like the C180.
The lack of power is most noticeable while overtaking and while merging onto the highway. The issue here is not necessarily the lack of power as much as the fact that the C180 is actually not as efficient as some higher-end C-Class models are on a highway.
Is the Mercedes C180 safe?
It depends on which model year you go for and how willing are you to spend money on all the safety bells and whistles. Understandably, the new W206 C-Class is the safest one of them all, especially when equipped thoroughly.
This means that the W204, the 205, and the W206 are all indeed safe, but if you want to make them as safe as possible, you will have to find ones with all the safety options included.