Many consider the C-Class Mercedes the bottom feeder of the car maker’s bloodline. Modestly priced with forgettable styling, the car’s saving grace was that you could say:“I drive a Benz.”

The 2012 C250 Mercedes-Benz Coupe. (Mercedes-Benz/Wieck)

I was so infatuated by new model that I chose not to review the press info accompanying the car. Instead, I took to the road. I did grab my phone with Sy Smith’s “Fast and Curious” CD downloaded on it. It’s a disc with a fitting title to review with the C250.

Album cover "Fast and Curious" for soul singer Sy Smith. (Courtesy of Sy Smith music)

As I settled in the plush redesigned interior, I connected my phone to the car’s audio system via Bluetooth and with a swipe of my finger the touch screen landed on the album’s title track, “Fast and Curious.” The head-nodding song blew in like a 1980’s “Loose Ends” song.  Meanwhile, the C250 reminded me of the confidence and coolness I felt the first time I drove a Mercedes.

The premium Harmon/Kardon surround sound system warmed my ears with Sy’s sweet voice as if she was singing songs like “The Ooh to My Aah” from the passenger seat.

The car is equipped with a seven-speed manual mode with paddle shifters that doesn’t quite make up for the lack of a stick shift. But for most city drivers it gives enough control to make quick moves with ease.

The bouncy disco flavor throughout “Fast and Curious” bumps out the seven speakers matching the fun and carefree drive of the C250. It’s a coupe but still grown and slick like the seasoned singer having fun with her craft.

“Nights (Feel Like Gettin’ Down),” a groovy cover of a Billy Ocean song assisted by vocal passenger Rahsaan Patterson, begs you turn up the volume and put your foot to the pedal without missing a beat.  The tune is as slick of a thrill ride as the C250.

Interior of the 2012 C250 Mercedes-Benz Coupe. (Mercedes-Benz/Wieck)

Like the C250, Sy takes high profile cues but from jazz musician and Deejay Marc de Clive-Lowe, who produces the entire album.  With Sy Smith you get an independent artist without any lag in production or vocal talent.

If you are enjoying a beautiful day in the city, “People of the Sun” is a Stevie Wonder-tinged uplifting track that’s sure to bring rays of sunshine to your drive. The C250 is a welcome burst of light itself.  A feel-good ride inside and out, the C250 soaked in Sy Smith’s mood on “Fast and Curious.”

And when night fell, the C250’s huge panoramic sliding sunroof allowed “Messages from the Stars” to come down in all its synthesized, spaced-out glory.  In the song, Sy demands you to get out of your seat and jam. If you still somehow get drowsy on the road, Mercedes’s Attention Assist system detects this and alerts the driver to take a break. The navigation system will even direct you to a Zagat-rated coffee shop.

The C250 Coupe is a proper introduction to an elite fraternity/sorority for those who can afford the initiation fee. Mercedes has updated its entry coupe with swag and precision. Sy Smith’s “Fast and Curious” is a playful guilty pleasure that will moves you as much the C250 will.

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How do you like the C250?

After listening to Sy Smith, was I wrong about “Fast and Curious”?

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@1cooldad2012 Mercedes Benz C250 4-Passenger Coupe

Price Tag: $37,220 base ($44,510 tested)

Power:  1.8L turbocharged 16V four-cylinder direct injection with 201 horsepower

Transmission: Seven-speed driver-adaptive automatic transmission with Touch Shift

Drivetrain: Rear-wheel drive

Fuel Economy (mpg):  21-city/31-hwy

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