The C-Class is no longer Mercedes-Benz's entry-level sedan offering as this role has been at attributed to the CLA. As a consequence, the German marque had to distance the C-Class from the A-Class-based sedan and as a result the W205 generation has grown in size since it is 95mm longer (at 4686mm) and 40mm (at 1810mm) wider than its predecessor, while height stands at 1442mm. 80mm of the added length is in the wheelbase which now stands at 2840mm and the cargo capacity has been increased to 480 liters.
From a design point of view it doesn't bring anything new to the table compared to its bigger E-Class facelift and all-new S-Class brothers yet it does look significantly more premium than the outgoing model. It features a long hood and shorter overhangs along with a narrower glasshouse and more flowing lines. Overall, the 2014 C-Class looks more modern and will likely attract additional younger customers without having a negative effect on the usual C-Class clients.
Back in October we saw the interior cabin which looks considerably more luxurious thanks to the use of more premium materials and a wraparound dashboard with three circular air vents. There are less buttons on the dashboard as many of them have been replaced by a free-standing screen sitting on top of the dashboard which can be accessed via a rotary controller offered as standard. There's an optional touchpad which has just about the same functionality that you get on a smartphone.
The 2014 Mercedes-Benz C-Class rides on the modular MRA rear-wheel drive architecture and is up to 100 kg (220 lbs) lighter than the outgoing model. As a result of this significant diet, fuel consumption has been reduced by 20 percent without affecting performance. The vehicle also has a lower center of gravity which should result in a sportier handling experience.
It will be the first vehicle in this segment to be offered with air suspension in the form of an optional self-leveling AIRMATIC which is electronically controlled on both axles and features continuous variable damping. The standard steel suspension comes with a selective damping system offered in three modes: comfort, comfort with sportier character and a sports suspension which lowers the car by 15mm.
Upon launch it will be offered with three engines, starting with the C 220 BlueTEC packing a 2.2-liter 4-cylinder diesel rated at 170 HP (125 kW) and 400 Nm (295 lb-ft) of torque. It will do 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) in 8.1 seconds and will have a fuel consumption of just 4 liters / 100 km (58.8 mpg US or 70.6 mpg UK) with CO2 emissions of 103 g/km.
Next is the C 180 model with a 1.6-liter gasoline engine delivering 156 HP (115 kW) and 250 Nm (184 lb-ft) which will be enough for a 0-62 mph run in 8.2 seconds. Fuel consumption will stand at 5 liters / 100 km (47 mpg US or 56.4 mpg UK) with corresponding CO2 emissions of 116 g/km.
There will also be a more powerful C 200 model with a 2.0-liter outputting 184 HP (135 kW) and 300 Nm (221 lb-ft) of torque. The engine will grant the car with a 0-62 mph run in 7.5 seconds and a fuel consumption of 5.3 liters / 100 km (44 mpg US or 53.2 mpg UK), while CO2 emissions will be of 123 g/km.
Shortly after the new C-Class will go on sale, Mercedes-Benz will introduce a 1.6-liter diesel that will be available with 115 HP (85 kW) / 280 Nm (206 lb-ft) and 136 HP (100 kW) / 320 Nm (236 lb-ft). In addition, the car will also be offered with a 2.2-liter diesel with 115 HP (85 kW), 204 HP (150 kW) and also with 170 HP (125 kW) in the BlueEFFICIENCY Edition.
Other engines on the way are five 4-cylinder gasoline motors with output ranging from 156 HP (115 kW) to 238 HP (175 kW). In addition, there will be a C 300 BlueTEC HYBRID encompassing a 4-cylinder diesel with 204 HP (150 kW) working together with a 27 HP (20 kW) electric motor which will provide the car with a fuel consumption of just 3.9 liters / 100 km (60.3 mpg US or 72.4 mpg UK).
Depending on engine choice, the 2014 Mercedes-Benz C-Class will feature a newly developed 6-speed manual gearbox or a 7G-TRONIC PLUS seven-speed automatic transmission. Optionally available will be the firm's 4MATIC all-wheel drive setup and various safety systems such as Active Parking Assist, Adaptive Highbeam Assist Plus and Traffic Sign Assist with Wrong-Way Alert.
Already available on order, the new C-Class starts at 33,558 EUR in Germany for the C 180 model. Opt for the C 200 model and you will have to pay 36,414 EUR while the C 220 BlueTEC is priced at 38,675 EUR.