B180 CDI Review

DITTRICH

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I have had the use of the above 11 plate car for 2.5 weeks whilst my w124 was at the dealership being dealt with and I thought I would share my experience. So in no particular order.

In london traffic it is quite possible to achieve 40mpg without any great effort. On longer journeys, it is possible to see in excess of 55mpg by cruising sedately in 7th gear. My overall average mpg was around 43mpg over around 600 miles.

The driving position, compared to the w124 and w202 is way up high, though not high enough to see the extremities of the bonnet which kind of makes the parktronic essential.

The gearbox was very very smooth and some changes almost undetectable even when keeping an eye on the rev counter. However, on moving foot from brake to accelerator when standing, there seems to be a definite but light clunk at which point movement commences. In the w124 and w202 there is no detectable jerk or clunk and you just start moving. In 5 speed cars, it is easy to keep track of which gear you are in and manipulate your foot to invoke kickdown. Here you never really know what it is going to do and when it changes up or down. Maybe I just didn't get the feel of the car, but there is very little feel to get from what I could tell. My older cars and gearboxes give much more feedback.

The engine, being rather small, did not feel alive, even when in sporty mode. In comfy mode it changes up so quickly. It felt somewhat gutless to be honest.

The steering is so light I had no real idea where the wheels were at all and my w202 with the fat tires seemed quite an effort when I changed back. Don't like the steering at all in the B.

The car, having smaller wheels required alot more care around london streets and sleeping policemen and I had to pump the tires up in order to achieve a slightly better ground clearance. Also improved the economy I suspect.

The interior fittings and gizmos are as one would expect. They work and do what they are supposed to. But I still missed having the central locking switch on the centre console so the passenger can easily lock all the doors too. All the switches are now in the drivers door. The telephone bluetooth worked well enough but I will retrofitting something in my w202 and w124 anyway to take care of this. Deleting my phone contacts was a pain as I never discovered if I could delete them all at once, so I had to spend a considerable amount of time deleting them 1 by 1.

The internal ambiance was however, not a mercedes that I recognise. A 3 pointy star is supposed to make one feel special!!! and this felt just ordinary. In short, it did not feel like a "proper" mercedes. Difficult to describe.

How was the B class sir he asked?
Okay, I said, but it's not a mercedes.

I will be sticking with the w124 e300d and the w202 c230k.
 

A210AMG

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Interesting,

We swapped our A class of 4 years for a B class and love it. So much so soon after buying it instead of taking my ML to europe we took the B class.

It also saved around £300 in fuel alone :)

Inside the switch gear etc is more similar to my E class. I love the gearbox (ours is CVT auto) its like one big elastic band gear, very very smooth and makes the gearbox in the E class feel clunky.

Good job we are all different I guess but for our needs and looking at all the similar Golfs, A3's, 1 series, etc etc it was the best that ticked all the box's.

Best we have had is 59mpg I will beat 60mpg one day. As for speed etc, i've no problem with that? maybe you didn't get used to the box enough?

It would be interesting to give a B class owner a W124 and see it from the other side :)
 
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DITTRICH

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horses for courses. my finance manager has a b class and loves it. i think people grow into their cars and familiarity tends to take over after a while. i' not saying i wouldn't drive another car: maybe a 420/500/560 sec, w124 e36 coupe or a w202 c43/c55 or even a 600 if the lottery came through.
 

GP801

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Had a B class not so long ago when the CLK was in for a service. Have to say I quite liked it apart from the very hard ride. It was sport spec with the large AMG alloys. The CVT box seemed to work very well. However would not swap any of ours for one.
 

hawk20

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The B class is in the the top five most reliable family cars according to What Car -no other Mercedes comes near on that.

And top of its class on the JD Power survey of owners for customer satisfaction .
 

amgmaster

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the b class is a fantastic everyday car we had a b180cdi auto for 3years which we changed last year for a b200cdi auto and my wife loves it;).perfect for taking the kids to school or just getting the shopping. easy to get in and out of will hopefully change it for the new one when it comes out.:thumb:
 

A210AMG

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Like I said really it depends on your needs for a car.

Funny as when my E class was in I was given a CLK I'm not up on the numbers but the older shape 200 kompressor. I liked that and it drove quite well. wouldn't suit us being a 2 door (big doors) and also I didn't like seeing 30mpg :) but when the little ones are bigger and can jump in and out themselfs and do the seatbelt I could be tempted with CLK270 / 320Cdi.

Our B class is the SE version with sport spec, so I think we get the softer suspension even though the 17" alloys so the ride is ok.

The new B class to us look like a mini R class and again looks to be a good car.
 

HumberMart

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All auto diesel B class's are CVT and don't have 7 proper gears so the review is somewhat comical! This will change of course with the new model next April. My wife has had her B180 CVT 2 years and loves it. Like many, I find the ride poor but also the old 2 litre diesel very gruff.
 
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DITTRICH

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@ Humbermart, when I was selecting the gears myself I had PRND1234567 at my disposal and was able to change up and down as well as let the car change itself in D. I'm not so sure you are correct! It only had 1,100 miles on the clock '11' plate and was "new".
Les

And according to the whatcar review, the CVT box in an option not standard on the B180 CDI. On balance, I trust myself to recognise a gear change, so I would respectfully suggest that whoever is being comical, it ain't me.
 
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HumberMart

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Sorry was not trying to be disrespectful. The CVT can simulate 7 gears as you found but they are only software settings. This means that there is no gears to change so it will seem very smooth. In effect it just has one gear that is variable to an infinate no of ratios. I am correct on this as the new version without CVT and conventional auto will not go on sale until next year - my wife can't wait!
 

A210AMG

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I love the one big gear in ours...


It really makes for a smooth journey and my E class feels cluncky as it shifts through the 5 it has :)
 
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I had CVT on an Audi A4 Cab, not a great fan.

Tends to suffer from stagefright at roundabouts and over-revs. Mine was petrol and I really can't imagine a diesel with that box.
 
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Deleted member 6183

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^ I've yet to have any issues ??

Push the go pedal and it erm....goes.......

Well.........

Maybe it's because you have the good sense to drive an MB not and Audi?
 

bpsorrel

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One of the really good things about my Nissan in Russia is the CVT 6 speed auto. So smooth, way better than either of my standard autos and the manual "simulated" gear changes are very "authentic" feeling for fairly sporty ratios.

I had a CVT B class courtesy car a couple of years ago and it felt exactly the same as the Nissan. I actually quite liked the B, although it clearly wasn't as "premium" feeling as it's bigger brothers.
 
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DITTRICH

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Sorry was not trying to be disrespectful. The CVT can simulate 7 gears as you found but they are only software settings. This means that there is no gears to change so it will seem very smooth. In effect it just has one gear that is variable to an infinate no of ratios. I am correct on this as the new version without CVT and conventional auto will not go on sale until next year - my wife can't wait!

Further reading would confirm your view. I stand corrected. This also explains why it felt that way in D. Though it must have 7 exact software ratios to be a 7 speed, so that's auto behaviour in my book rather than cvt. Personally, I prefer to control and know what gear I am using, rather than letting a computer decide for me. It may be smooth but...
Personally, I would prefer the old 5 speed auto with a gear 6 overdrive for motorway cruising to bring the revs down from 3k.
 

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