Mercedes-Benz has unveiled the new C Class saloon and estate ahead of their arrival in UK dealerships this summer.
Full pricing and specifications are expected to be published in March, when the new model will be available to order.
The C Class has both design and technology in common the new S Class luxury saloon. It welcomes a fully digital dashboard and enhanced driver assistance systems.
The car has grown in both length and width, benefitting rear-seat passengers with an addition 21mm of legroom plus increased elbow and shoulder room for all occupants. Boot volume remains the same on saloon models, at 455l, but grows to 490l (vs 460l) on the estate.
All the powertrains in the new C Class are electrified, although there is no fully electric variant. Using only four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines, there’s a choice of 48v mild-hybrid and plug-in hybrid technology. Even the range topping AMG model will use a four-cylinder engine, when it arrives later in the year.
To make the plug-in hybrid models as efficient as possible, the battery has been increased to 25.4kWh giving a predicted range of more than 60 miles. Both petrol and diesel variants will be offered. An optional 55kW DC charging system will enable the PHEV battery to recharge in 30 minutes.
The model range includes the C 180, C200 and C300 petrol mild-hybrids, which emit from 141-168g/km of CO2. All-wheel drive is offered on the latter two models.
Both the entry-level 180 (170PS) and the 200 (204PS) use a 1.5-litre engine. Performance is brisk, with the slowest model able to accelerate from 0-62mph in 8.6 seconds.
A 200PS C 220 d will be joined by a 265PS C 300d. The more potent unit can hit 62mph in just 5.8 seconds from rest. Both have similar CO2 emissions, ranging from 131g/km – 139g/km.
Specifications for the plug-in hybrid and AMG models are yet to be released, but these will be the most powerful options.
Following the introduction of MBUX – Mercedes’ infotainment system - on the last C Class, the new model features the brand’s second-generation system. Using large portrait touchscreen in the centre of the dashboard, the new setup combines the majority of vehicle controls in a similar way to the new S Class.
The standard display size is 9.5 inches, but an 11.9-inch version is also available. There is also a digital instrument cluster. The look of the screens can be individualised with three display styles (Discreet, Sporty, Classic) and three modes (Navigation, Assistance, Service).
Among the technical highlights for the new model is an optional rear-axle steering system that helps to improve both low speed manoeuvring and high speed agility. It is also available with Mercedes’ new Digital Light headlights, which allow the car to project guidelines and warning symbols onto the road at night.
UK pricing has not been confirmed yet, but the new C Class is predicted cost from £35,000.