Mercedes C-Class Road Test Review: Designed For Style And Technology
The Mercedes-Benz C-Class has changed a lot over the past five generations. It used to be called the Baby Benz, but now it’s called the Baby S. The A-Class has moved into that spot, so it’s no longer the baby. Except, no. Inside, the C-Class borrows a lot from the S-Class.
The dashboard layout is the same as on the S, with a floating screen again for the digital cockpit and an infotainment screen that looks like a tablet and is oriented vertically. Everything from the menus to the operating system to where the hard buttons are and how they work is taken from the S-Class. There’s also the quality.
The metal finish on the door seat adjusters is knurled. The same knurled finish is on both ends of the indicator stalk. The air conditioning vents feel like metal and work with a lovely click-clack. The controls on the steering wheel are touch-sensitive, and the C300d’s 4-spoke AMG steering wheel reminds me of the wheel in the first batch of CBU S-Classes that also had the AMG Line pack.
You receive Burmester sound. There is a lot of mood lighting, even in the air-conditioning vents. A touch slider, like the one on the S, is on the sunroof. The action of the power window switches is so good that it’s ridiculous. There’s nothing made of cheap plastic to hurt your fingers with.
Even the key was taken from the S. If I had to find something to complain about, it would be that the paddle shifters on the steering wheel are made of plastic. I know it sounds silly to want metal paddle shifters on a C-Class. Things are, of course, smaller over the S. Even though the C is two sizes smaller, the digital cockpit is the same size, at 12.3 inches.
The infotainment screen is slightly smaller at 11.9 inches (12.8 inches on the S-Class, so not by much), but since the car is also much smaller, these screens look big enough and fill up the space on the dash. And it has a lot of things. You get CarPlay over the air. Built-in navigation.
Reach and rake adjustments are made with an electric motor. And these cars are linked up right. Biometric authentication is part of the most recent NTG-7 protocols. You get the Mercedes Me suite of connected car technology, which lets you start and cool the car from afar, set a geofence around it, see where the driver has taken it for a joy ride and how much fuel it is using, and more.
Saying “Hey Mercedes” can tell the navigation system to take you to a nearby biryani place. And Mercedes’ social network adds to that by letting cars on the road send information like traffic accidents, potholes, speed bumps, and more to the cloud. This information is then sent back to nearby cars to warn them.
The S-Class was the initial car to have this technology, and now the C is part of the Car-to-X network. If I had to select something, it would be that the C doesn’t have cooled seats, but that’s about it. When it comes to the inside of the car, there’s no question that the C-Class is the best in its class.
Driving the Mercedes-Benz C-Class
The new C-Class is the biggest car in its class.
⦁ Abhishek Benny fired the gun.
⦁ This sixth-generation C-Class takes the W205’s Modular Rear Architecture and adds 25mm to the wheelbase, 13mm to the width, and 65mm to the overall length (2865mm).
The wheelbase stretch has increased rear knee room by 21 mm, which we’ll discuss briefly. The front track is also wider by 19 mm, and the back track is wider by 48 mm, giving more elbow (22 mm) and shoulder room (13mm). This makes the C-Class the biggest car in this class. The A-Class Limousine is 63mm longer and 10mm wider.
The front suspension has double wishbones, and the back has independent multi-links, but the springs, dampers, and anti-roll bars are set differently than on the W205. The focus on comfort is clear as soon as you get on the road because the C-Class has a much better ride quality.
The old C was a little stiff, but the new C smooths out sharp bumps and has a well-balanced ride quality that doesn’t hurt how it handles. Since the C can absorb more bumps in the road, it doesn’t get thrown around by bumps in the middle of corners and can carry more speed through bends.
Special attention should be paid to the steering, which has just the right amount of weight and is easier to control thanks to a new ratio. Down the hills from Mussoorie, the C-Class turns beautifully, breathing over the bumps, gripping hard when pushed, and ensuring its body doesn’t move too much.
Even over rough spots, the suspension doesn’t crash and send shocks into the cabin. This is a sign of sophistication, and it’s what you pay a lot of money for. We won’t know if the C can wag its tail and play around until we get the car on familiar roads. The roads around the hills of Mussoorie were too narrow to safely push the car’s dynamic limits.
The C-Class is the first line of cars to only have electric engines. I’m not talking about electric vehicles (EVs), but diesel and gasoline cars will have 48-volt technology with an integrated starter generator (ISG). The immediate benefit for enthusiasts is the 20bhp increase in power and the 200Nm increase in torque, which are added to the C220d’s 197bhp and 440Nm of torque.
With 640Nm of torque, the C220d we’re testing is fast and easy to drive through the mountains. When you hit the gas, it takes 7.3 seconds to get to 100kmph. When you let off the gas, it gets an amazing 23kmpl. Don’t let the badge on the trunk fool you, though.
The C220d has a 2-liter diesel engine, while the C200 petrol has a 1.5-liter turbo-petrol engine. The VP of sales and marketing confirmed that neither the C 43 AMG nor the C 63 AMG has four cylinders. This means that the C 63 AMG is the only petrol engine.
The gasoline engine makes 201bhp and 300Nm, and the ISG adds another 20bhp and 200Nm. On paper, the performance is just as good as the C220d. It takes the same 7.3 seconds to go from 0 to 100 km/h, but the fuel economy drops to 16.9 km/l, and I have to say that the diesel’s torque makes it easier to drive. Plus, the diesel engine is very quiet; while cruising, you can barely hear it.
AMG Line on C300d
You’ll have to stick with diesel if you want the fastest C-Class. The top-of-the-line C300d takes the 2-liter diesel’s output and boosts it by 20 bhp and 200 Nm, bringing it to 261 bhp and 550 Nm. Even 3-liter V6s didn’t have as much torque as the C300d’s 750Nm until a few years ago. This makes the C300d fast, as it only takes 5.7 seconds to go from 0 to 100kmph.
The fuel efficiency doesn’t go down either. ARAI tested it and found that it gets 20.37kmpl. This beautiful look can only come from a sedan. Abhishek Benny fired the gun. The C300d also gets the AMG Line body kit, which gives it a sportier grille with a smaller three-pointed star, bumpers with big holes for the nose, and 18-inch wheels one size bigger.
On the inside, you can choose all-black or black-brown seats with the beautiful AMG steering wheel and carbon fiber-look trim on the dashboard. The result is a car that looks like it could only be a Mercedes-Benz. The C-Class takes many styling cues from the S-Class and makes them smaller. Now, all that’s left to find out (tomorrow, May 10) is how much the price will go down compared to the S.