Description: Compact Luxury Sedan
Base MSRP Range: $29,200 - $54,450
Invoice Price Range: $27,156 - $50,638
Where built: Germany
Compact-size C Class cars by Mercedes consist strictly of four-door sedans for 2006. Top model is a powerful high-performance version crafted by AMG, but there's optional all-wheel-drive (AWD) equipment -- called 4Matic in Mercedes nomenclature with 40/60 percent front/rear torque split.
The Mercedes compacts score a range of new twin-cam V6 engines in 2006. For C230 the 2.5-liter V6 delivers 201 hp; C280 employs a 3.0-liter V6 with 228 hp, but C350 gets the Mercedes 3.5-liter V6 for 268 hp. The C Class performance sedan, badged as the C55 AMG, has a hand-built AMG V8 that jumps to 362 hp.
Mercedes-Benz with headquarters in Germany makes luxury and performance vehicles that span the scale in size and type with multiple options for power and traction. The vast collection includes souped-up performance variations in many categories built by the Mercedes super-tuner AMG. But there are three new Mercedes classes for 2006 -- the elegant CLS Class of four-door coupes, the large-scale R Class sport tourer wagons and a new generation of designs for American-built M Class of sport-utility vehicles.