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First drive: Mercedes-Benz C-Class estate



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Mercedes-Benz C-Class estate

Mercedes is unashamedly taking a leaf out of Audi’s book when it comes to the new C-Class estate, creating a tougher looking stylish machine which is modern enough to appeal to new buyers.

It’s unmistakably a Mercedes-Benz, but one which is modern enough to appeal to new buyers.

Though only 55mm longer and 42mm wider than its predecessor, it boasts an extra 170mm usable interior length and a 1,500 litre load area with the rear seats folded flat.

Engine and trim options are the same as the saloon, and Mercedes expects a similar sales split.

Mercedes claims 46% of C-Class estates will be petrol powered, with 93% of buyers opting for an automatic gearbox.

Aimed at young buyers, the Sport trim is expected to take around half of sales, with the remainder split evenly between the more traditional luxury Elegance and entry level SE.

The C63 AMG estate due to later this year will have a halo effect. Useful, as the June arrival of a new A4 Avant means the C-Class faces a tough battle.

But a sportier image, smart styling and improved practicality means it’s at least putting up a good fight.

Fact file

Price: £24,630 - £37,205
Engine: 1.8 s/charged: 156bhp; 2.0 s/charged: 184bhp; 2.3: 204bhp; 3.5: 231bhp; 2.0 CDI: 136bhp; 2.2 CDI: 170bhp; 3.2 CDI: 224bhp
Transmission: 6sp; 5sp/7sp auto
Performance: 0-62mph 6.5-10.8sec; top speed 152-127mph
Efficiency: 47.1-28.5mpg; 157-235g/km CO2
CAP RV 3yr/30k: 42-49%
Rivals: Audi A4 Avant; BMW 3 Series Touring; Jaguar X-Type Estate
Strengths: Vast, versatile load area
Weaknesses: Too traditional for some

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