In the world of the AMG Mercedes-Benz C-Class, most people focus on the C63: the V8-powered, ultra-fast, big-engined monster that came out in 2008 and continues today, albeit with a redesign and a new engine. The most forgotten AMG, however, is the C55 — and it doesn’t deserve its forgotten status.
Here’s a little overview. The C55 was based on the W203 C-Class, which was sold in North America from 2001 to 2007. From 2002 to 2004, the AMG version was dubbed the C32, and it used a 3.2-liter supercharged V6 engine that made about 350 horsepower. This was a decent car, but it struggled with reliability issues — and while these, too, are oft forgotten in the modern era, it’s for good reason.
The C55 debuted in 2005, and it was only sold through 2006. It had only marginally more power than the C32 — 362 horses instead of 349 — but its main benefit was big V8 torque, with 376 lb-ft over the C32’s 330, and, of course, the instant torque availability that comes with a V8. The C55 also used a hugely reliable powertrain in the brand’s 5.4-liter V8, and the engine wasn’t supercharged or turbocharged for added stress. It’s probably the most reliable AMG C-Class in existence.
Its performance was good, too, as 0-to-60 mph times for the C55 are in the high four-second range — and then there was the wonderful, understated look offered by the C55. It didn’t perform as well as the C63 that came later, sure, but that car was marred with serious engine issues from the head bolts, which could destroy the entire powertrain — an issue the C55 didn’t have.
These days, used C55 models are hard to find, given that they were made for just two years — but there are a few on Autotrader, and they’re bargains, given their performance and dependability. The C55 is certainly the forgotten C-Class that shouldn’t be forgotten. Find a Mercedes-Benz C55 AMG for sale