Test Drive: 2014 Mercedes-Benz C 200

Mercedes-Benz C-Class Test Drive_C 200 2014_01It looks like a compact version of the S-Class, so we just had to take the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class for a test drive to see how it matches against its luxurious big brother.

This new C-Class is available with two different front-end designs. As standard and with the Avantgarde package, the new C-Class has much sportier look with twin louvres sports grille. But with this Executive package, featuring the classic radiator grille and the Mercedes star on the bonnet, the front-end looks very much like the new S-Class, just a bit smaller.

Compared to the predecessor, the C-Class is 95 millimetres longer and 40 mm wider. The bonnet is long and the passenger compartment is set well back. The wheelbase has increased 80 millimetres offering more space for the passengers on the rear seat. If the car would be any bigger, it would match the E-Class.

As well as the exterior, the interior of the new C-Class shows that the car is targeting a different level. If the previous C-Class felt like a premium, this new one is close to luxurious. New design, The use of high class materials and the quietness of the cabin all make it feel a bit more special than it was before.

There is just one thing that I would have designed differently. And that is the central display. An integrated display would look more elegant, instead of this free-standing version, which looks a bit an aftermarket accessory. All the functions of the head-unit can be operated through the new touchpad in the handrest. The touchpad also permits letters, numbers and special characters to be entered in handwriting. Another new feature in the C-Class is the head-up display.

The engine lineup includes 4-cylinder petrol and diesel engines and one six-cylinder petrol variant. The most economical is the C 300 BlueTec Hybrid with a fuel consumption of 3.6 l/100km. The most powerful is the C 400, delivering 245 kW (333 hp) from its 3.0-litre engine. Our test drive car, the C 200, is powered by a 4-cylinder petrol engine with a displacement of 1,991 cc. It delivers 135 kW (184 hp) at 5,500 rpm and 300 Nm of torque between 1,200 and 4,000 rpm. Paired with the seven-speed automatic transmission, 7G TRONIC PLUS, the C 200 accelerates from zero to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 7.3 seconds and can reach a top speed of 235 km/h.

The C 200 might not sound very impressive, but the performance is good enough for different driving situations. On the road the car isn’t very sporty, but more comfortable and luxurious. Considering its styling, it feels like a perfect match.

The new Mercedes-Benz C-Class provides just the kind of ride that you would expect from a premium sedan, or maybe we should call it a premium plus from now on.