Mercedes-Benz's bread-and-butter model is finally being updated with the arrival of the all-new C-Class, replacing the outgoing model which has been on sale since 2007 and has sold over 2.4 million units.
The all-new C-Class reportedly took into account people's increasing average height, necessitating an 80mm increase in wheelbase (2,840mm) over its predecessor on top of its increased length (4,686mm) and width (1,810mm). Even the car's trunk space has supposedly been enlarged to 480L.
According to the German carmaker, the C-Class's design was inspired by nature, specifically its "aesthetically sensuous lines and surfaces, whose harmony and dynamism create an immediate effect." Up front, the car comes with halogen headlights as standard with two LED variants available as an option. At the back, the taillights are all LEDs.
Inside, the all-new C-Class supposedly follows a new design idiom, with an all-new center console panel that elegantly sweeps from the center air vents to the armrest. On vehicles with the six-speed manual transmission, the center console is slightly steeper and has two separate trim elements that create ample space to operate the gear lever. The automatic transmission, on the other hand, is a 7G-Tronic Plus system.
A centrally positioned free-standing display is the main eye-catching feature on the center console, with either a 7-inch or 8.4-inch screen. Operating it also requires the use of an innovative touchpad in the handrest over the controller on the center tunnel. Like a smartphone, this touchpad system provides for very simple and intuitive operation of all the head-unit functions using finger gestures. The touchpad also permits letters, numbers and special characters to be entered in handwriting--in any language. A heads-up display is also new to the C-Class.
At launch, the all-new C-Class will be available with three engine variants: the diesel-fed C220 BlueTec that produces 170hp and 400Nm, and two gasoline models, the C180 that puts out 156hp and 250Nm, and the C200 that ekes out 184hp and 300Nm. Zero-to-100kph sprint time of all three cars are 8.1 seconds for the C220 BlueTec, 8.2 seconds for the C180 and 7.5 seconds for the C200.
"The new C-Class embodies Mercedes-Benz's claim of 'the best or nothing' in uncompromising style," said Mercedes-Benz executive vice president for sales and marketing Ola Kallenius at the car's launch. "This is immediately apparent when encountering our new sedan for the first time, as it creates the impression that one is sitting in a higher class of automobile. I am sure that our customers will be delighted by the high-class appeal and agility of the new C-Class."