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The Mercedes-Benz C-Class is one of the most highly-regarded luxury sedans on the market. There’s a reason it’s shown up on many “10 Best” lists and even won “World Car of the Year” in 2015. There’s no doubt that the C-Class is a remarkable car, but how many miles can you expect to drive one?

A Mercedes-Benz C-Class can last a while with the proper maintenance

2022 C-Class
2022 Mercedes-Benz C-Class | MB

Just like any other car, a Mercedes-Benz C-Class can easily last an average of 175,000 miles with the proper care and maintenance. According to VEHQ, “driving an average of 15,000 miles per year, this vehicle would last approximately 11.5 years.” We wouldn’t expect many car owners to eclipse the five-year mark when owning any car, but it’s good to know that a C-Class should be able to last double the amount of time.

As with any car, the key to a Mercedes-Benz C-Class’ longevity is the way it’s driven and maintained. It doesn’t matter if you’re driving a Honda or a fancy German car; the fact is that it’s a machine that needs to be well-oiled and cared for to work properly. The only real issue is the cost of maintaining the car.

According to data from Car Edge, it can cost an average of $10,734 to maintain a Mercedes C-Class for the first 10 years. That’s an average of $1,073 per year, which is around double the average maintenance cost of owning a Honda Civic for 10 years ($5,245).

Is the Mercedes-Benz C-Class a reliable car?

Yes, provided that you buy a newer model. The data from Car Complaints – a site where car owner post their real-world issues with the model – shows that C-Class models from 2008 and 2009 had the most substantial issues. The most common issues were that the car wouldn’t start.

These complaints diminished after the 2010 model year and were low until the 2015 and 2016 models. Each of these model years was subject to investigations from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration and over 10 recalls. Fortunately, the complaints dropped off after the 2017 model year. So it’s safe to say that the C-Class is a reliable car. But you may want to avoid the 2015 and 2016 model years for good measure.

Is it a good idea to buy a used C-Class?

2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class
2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class | Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg News

Yes, but get a pre-purchase inspection done first. If you’re looking to buy a used luxury car, you may notice that the prices for used C-Class models are relatively low. This is mainly due to residual values and the inherent maintenance costs that come with owning a Mercedes-Benz. Keep this in mind when researching any used luxury car, as repair parts and labor costs are typically high.

As always, we recommend that if you plan to buy a used Mercedes-Benz C-Class, have it inspected by a qualified mechanic first. A pre-purchase inspection can cost around $100 to $200. But it can eventually save you thousands on unforeseen repair costs if you don’t have one done. If you plan to keep the C-Class for 175,000 miles, it’s important to know of any issues that could lie ahead.


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