After the local launches of the all-new S-Class and E-Class, some folks were wondering when Mercedes-Benz Philippines will bring in the next-gen C-Class. Besides, the executive sedan is one of the best-sellers from the three-pointed star. It may have taken a while due to the global chip shortage, but the long wait is over. Ladies and gentlemen, say hello to the W206 C-Class.
Is that really C-Class or a zoomed-out S-Class?
No, your eyes aren’t deceiving you, that really is a C-Class. While the C-Class has (for the most part) looked like a shrunken S-Class over the years, it’s more obvious with the W206 generation. From its slim headlights, wide grille, and lower bumper elements, you might mistake it for the flagship sedan. It’s the same story when you go to the back as the taillight design has a similar triangular treatment to its larger counterparts.
Not quite a compact anymore
If we trace the roots of the C-Class, we start at the 190 series, or the W201 for you Benz fans out there. That car was a true compact at just 4,420mm long, making it even shorter than a modern-day Vios. But in 40 years, Mercedes-Benz's junior exec sedan has grown to 4,751mm long, 2,033mm wide (side mirrors included), and 1,440mm tall. That makes it about the size of the iconic W124 Mercedes, later known as the E-Class.
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A Junior S-Class inside too.
If you’re coming from the previous-gen C-Class, it’ll be quite a shock. It has a massive infotainment screen in the middle, just like the S-Class and E-Class. And if that wasn’t enough, the conventional instrument cluster is now a free-floating screen. The 11.9-inch screen houses the latest MBUX Multimedia that includes “Hey Mercedes” voice control, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. The new C-Class also has power front seats with memory, power lumbar support, auto dimming rearview mirror, and ambient lighting with 64 colors.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the all-new C-Class has a five-star safety rating from EuroNCAP. That’s mainly thanks to its standard seven airbags. It also has Blind Spot Assist to help avoid a possible collision. Other features include Active Brake Assist, Active Parking Assist, 12 ultrasonic sensors in the front and rear, a reverse camera, and Attention Assist.
What’s packing under the hood?
For now, the only engine option for the Philippines is a turbocharged 1.5-liter mild-hybrid. It’s good for 170hp and 250Nm of torque, and shifts with a nine-speed automatic transmission (9G-Tronic). Performance and economy figures from the factory claim a 0-100kph time of 8.6secs, a top speed of 231kph (not that you’ll try that here), and a combined fuel economy figure of up to 16.1 km/L.
And the price is...
The lone variant here is the C180 Avantgarde and it starts at P3,890,000. That’s a special introductory price so it might change in the coming months. And if you're curious where it's built, the Philippine-spec C180 comes from South Africa. If you want to see it up close, you can check it out at Mercedes-Benz Bonifacio Global City, EDSA Greenhills, Alabang, and Cebu City.