The distinctions were paper-thin, but still, the Lexus prevailed in almost all the acceleration categories, was quicker in the emergency lane change, turned in the better skidpad number, and repeatedly stopped slightly better than its opponent from Stuttgart—especially if you factor in on-track performance, as the Benz was a bit more prone to fade on Moroso's road course. . We compensated for the shortage of entertaining roads by covering lots of miles—1640 of them, from Atlanta to Panama City in the Florida panhandle, then to Ft. Sort of like driving across Kansas, but without the elevation changes. Once I had the maintenance done to keep it going for a while, I had no intentions of letting it go. Yes Review Date: 17th November, 2003 Faults: Nothing yet. The multicontour seats have a variety of inflatable air bladders that allow the driver to adjust the shape of the seat to his body.
While we're on the subject of the interior, we can't help but wonder why Mercedes equipped the car with a steering wheel that telescopes but does not tilt. Performance is decent for a 3. This is a 2+2 , so dont expect alot of room. We judged it to be the stiffest platform in that four-way shootout back in 1998, and it won rigidity honors this time around, too. We do have one major reservation about the interior: the rear seats, which are snug to the point of uselessness.
Mercedes did a wonderful job at tuning this car for performance needs. It drinks gas like it was going out of style. The ride is very sporty yet still comfortable. Tiptronic gearbox is a little slow between changes. But with this car, the fun only begins at 60; after that it piles on speed at what seems like an exponential rate. This machine's forte is long sweepers; it really hunkered down and dug in on our favorite 100-mph freeway transition, largely ignoring mid-turn undulations and staying put. General Comments: I loved how this car looked, felt and drove.
It gave a good account of itself, finishing a close second in a four-car field and winning top marks for styling. Faults: The sunroof when closed squeaks and the rear headrest also squeaks when going over firm bumps. All but devoid of lateral support, they force the driver to use the steering wheel to keep himself centered when the g-loads start coming at odd angles. Yes Review Date: 19th November, 2002 I agree it has terribly poor visibility over both shoulders and just as well it has reverse sensors. Myers, a perennial Spring Break magnet; onward to Moroso Motorsports Park near West Palm Beach; to St. The trunk, too, is extremely limited, thanks to the top and its mechanism, but the same can be said for the Benz. Year of manufacture 2002 First year of ownership 2007 Most recent year of ownership 2008 Engine and transmission 2.
But that's beside the point, to wit: One convertible is conceived for people who are passionate about driving; the other seems dedicated to cruising in sybaritic comfort, and being noticed while doing so. Yes, if you're not too concerned about money. Otherwise, the interior is standard issue Mercedes. Driving it today I get nothing but looks and thumbs up as it still holds its ascetic value. It bristles with style, technology, luxury, high feature content, and value. Would I swap this car for another one? The braking is amazing, the power is borderline obnoxious, and the overall ride is great.
The interior of the car seems almost factory new and all electronic features function normally. The paint chips far too easily. It produces its 295-pound-foot torque peak from 3000 rpm to around 4000. Augustine, the oldest European city in the U. Still, the Lexus did win some rounds in this bout.
Controls are legibly marked and are easy to manage. Year of manufacture 2002 First year of ownership 2017 Most recent year of ownership 2017 Engine and transmission 3. Had previously had the sunroof repaired as it did not open. This model's styling is great. It was four oval headlamps that revolutionized that staid image. We also preferred the Benz's Touch Shift five-speed manumatic transmission, which provided at least some measure of manual control, although not much.
The car has a presence about it, even being 15+ years old, and has aged well. Mercedes' new coupe is stunning sitting still, and a delight on the road. None of the less expensive machines has this much polish, feature content, power, or brand cachet. Airbag light on due to failed occupancy sensors in the front seats. The rest of the interior is pure Lexus, done up sumptuously in good leather and genuine walnut trim. That means it comes complete with the automaker's BabySmart child seat detection system and astonishingly complex cup holders.
On the other hand, this is a high-quality, beautifully lined softtop that does an excellent job of sealing out wind, weather, and noise. A convertible will join the lineup in about a year. Moroso gave us a chance to see what both cars would do at their limits, and the rest of the schlepping left us thoroughly familiar with their cruising credentials. The car is by far, hands down, the most expensive car to maintain if you wish for it to be a daily driver. Model year 2002 Year of manufacture 2002 First year of ownership 2009 Most recent year of ownership 2010 Engine and transmission 5.
Both fall into the realm of the subjective, and there's no doubt that our responses to this car don't necessarily reflect the market at large. A smooth, quiet, 275-horsepower 4. A high-content package comes with the deal, as there are few options. And of course on these cars, regular fluid changes wherever there are fluids. Mercedes' combination of torque curve and transmission phasing still makes for a slightly lazy launch just off idle, a common M-B characteristic, although the 430 certainly has enough power. Still, the best all round car I've owned to date. Go ahead, just try to figure out the coupe market.