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Buying a new entry-level luxury sedan will often take you to the same places: Mercedes Benz, BMW, and Audi. Some would say that is boring, but no one will complain about the reason you go there: consistency. Time to consider the excellent current offerings: the 2009 Mercedes Benz C350 and the 2009 Audi A4.2009 C350 2.jpg

2009 audi a4.jpg


The 2009 Mercedes Benz C 350 is a speedy, powerful beast, in as much as
you can call anything produced by Mercedes something that feral. After
all, it still maintains that Mercedes Benz C-Class refinement, which
camouflages the 268 wild horses under the hood. Its size is another
thing on which drivers have remarked, going as far as to say it could
be a little too small. A Benz? Too small? But why not, small and
powerful often work well together in the jungle.

The 2009 Audi A4, in its latest mold, is a little longer than its
C-Class rival, and also falls just short of its horsepower count.
Still, it boasts the biggest available engine developing 265 brake
horsepower. On the market for $7, 000 cheaper, it arguably makes up in
value what it lacks so little in power.

These two cars compete very well with each other. Power output is very similar and each have the look of a slick modern luxury sedan. This decision really comes down to personal aesthetics and opinions. So what’s stopping you from buying one over the other? What are the pitfalls of buying the C350 or the A4? Personal experiences wanted.


2009 Audi A4 Model Line Overview

Model lineup: A4
2.0T sedan ($31,000); A4 2.0T sedan Premium quattro ($31,850); A4 2.0T
Avant Premium ($34,500); A4 2.0T sedan Premium Plus ($36,700); A4 2.0T
Avant Premium Plus ($38,500); A4 2.0T sedan Prestige ($40,000); A4 3.2
sedan Premium Plus ($40,000); A4 2.0T Prestige ($42,300); A4 3.2 sedan
Prestige ($43,300)
Engines: 211-hp 2.0-liter I4 turbo; 265-hp 3.2-liter V6
Transmissions: 6-speed manual; 6-speed automatic; CVT
Safety equipment (standard): two-stage
driver and adaptive passenger frontal airbags, side-impact airbags,
curtain airbags, Backguard headrests; electronic stability control,
ABS, EBD, Brake Assist, tire pressure monitors
Safety equipment (optional): rear side airbags, all-wheel drive, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, rear camera, park assist
Basic warranty: 4 years/50,000 miles
Assembled in: Ingolstadt, Germany

Specifications As Tested

Model tested (MSRP): Audi A4 Avant quattro ($34,500)
Standard equipment: leather
upholstery, climate control, power steering, power disc brakes, fog
lamps, all-wheel drive, Open Sky moonroof, power windows, power locks,
power heated mirrors, cruise control, split-fold rear seat,
tilt/telescoping steering column, MMI driver interface, alloy wheels
Options as tested (MSRP): Ash wood trim, ($400); Audi Symphony sound system ($380); HomeLink ($200); Bluetooth phone prep ($500)
Destination charge: ($825)
Gas guzzler tax: N/A
Price as tested (MSRP): $36,805
Layout: all-wheel drive
Engine: 2.0-liter dohc 16-valve I4 turbo
Horsepower (hp @ rpm): 211 @ 4200-6000
Torque (lb.-ft. @ rpm): 258 @ 1500-4200
Transmission: 6-speed automatic
EPA fuel economy, city/hwy: 21/27 mpg
Wheelbase: 110.6 in.
Length/width/height: 185.2/71.9/56.5 in.
Track, f/r: 61.6/61.1 in.
Turning circle: 37.4 ft.
Seating capacity: 5
Head/hip/leg room, f: 40.4/na/41.7 in.
Head/hip/leg room, m: N/A
Head/hip/leg room, r: 38.2/na/35.2 in.
Cargo volume: 34 cu. ft.
Payload: N/A
Towing capacity: not recommended Lbs.
Suspension, f: independent, upper/lower A-arms, coil springs, anti-roll bar
Suspension, r: independent, trapezoidal link, coil springs, anti-roll bar
Ground clearance: 4.1 in.
Curb weight: 3814 lbs.
Tires: 225/50R17
Brakes, f/r: vented disc/disc with ABS, EBD, Brake Assist
Fuel capacity: 16.9 gal.


2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Model Line Overview
Model lineup: Mercedes-Benz C300; C350
Engines: 228-hp 2.8-liter V6; 268-hp 3.5-liter V6
Transmissions: 7-speed automatic; 6-speed manual
Safety equipment (standard): frontal airbags, side-impact airbags, curtain airbags; electronic stability control, traction control, ABS, EBD, Pre-Safe
Safety equipment (optional): none
Basic warranty: 4 years/50,000 miles
Assembled in: Sindelfingen, Germany

Specifications As Tested

Model tested (MSRP): Mercedes-Benz C350 Sport
Standard equipment: N/A
Options as tested (MSRP): N/A
Destination charge: N/A
Gas guzzler tax: N/A
Price as tested (MSRP): N/A
Layout: rear-wheel drive
Engine: 3.5-liter dohc 24-valve V6
Horsepower (hp @ rpm): 268 @ 6000
Torque (lb.-ft. @ rpm): 258 @ 2400
Transmission: 7-speed automatic
EPA fuel economy, city/hwy: N/A
Wheelbase: 108.7 in.
Length/width/height: 180.4/69.7/57.0 in.
Track, f/r: 60.4/60.5 in.
Turning circle: 35.4 ft.
Seating capacity: 5
Head/hip/leg room, f: 37.1/52.3/41.7 in.
Head/hip/leg room, m: N/A
Head/hip/leg room, r: 36.9/54.9/33.4 in.
Cargo volume: 17.6 cu. ft.
Payload: N/A
Towing capacity: N/A
Suspension, f: independent, coil springs, gas struts, stabilizer bar
Suspension, r: independent. five-link with coil springs, gas shocks, stabilizer bar
Ground clearance: N/A
Curb weight: 3498 lbs.
Tires: P225/40ZR-17 front; P245/40ZR-17 rear
Brakes, f/r: disc/disc with ABS, EBD, Brake Assist
Fuel capacity: 17.4 gal.

 
 
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