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The Mercedes-Benz C55 AMG Is the Forgotten, Awesome AMG C-Class

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

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  1. Great article!  I had a 2005 C230 K I bought new and it was just probably one of the greatest cars I’ve ever owned.  It was fun, comfortable (and at the time), beautifully designed car to drive every day.  I may have to look for one of these C55’s next.

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Doug Demuro
Doug Demuro
Doug DeMuro writes articles and makes videos, mainly about cars. Doug was born in Denver, Colorado, and received an economics degree from Emory University in Atlanta. After graduation, Doug spent three years working for Porsche Cars North America. Eventually, he quit his job to become a writer, largely because it meant that he no longer had to wear pants. Doug’s work has been featured in a... Read More about Doug Demuro

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