It's a tough job, but someone has to do it.
As of this article posting on September 1, the world is less than a day away from seeing the new Mercedes-Benz S-Class sedan. With attention focused on the big flagship, it’s the perfect opportunity for other divisions at the automaker to ratchet up the testing schedule for prototypes. Perhaps that’s why we’ve seen more C-Class test vehicles out and about recently, with this latest video from Automotive Mike coming straight from the Nürburgring.
The camouflage striptease is halted in this clip, so we aren’t privy to fresh exterior details. We are privy to some tortured tires though – two different C-Class prototypes are caught on camera and both are being properly exercised on the Green Hell. Both cars appear to be standard models, though AMG suspension upgrades could be present.
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Despite the tire noise, the test vehicles appear composed and balanced under hard cornering. If anything, the tire noise seems contradictory at times to the aggressiveness of the vehicle. Perhaps this testing session is evaluating different tire brands for the next-gen sedan.
Gallery: 2021 Mercedes C-Class Sedan new spy photos
Underneath the body should be an updated version of the Mercedes MRA platform. The changes are expected to offer slightly more room in the cabin for passengers while offering more space underneath for new hybrid powertrains. Mild hybrid tech is expected to be part of the new C-Class at launch, but more involved setups should follow and that includes high-performance AMG variants. Current thinking is that a hybrid version of the turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder from the Mercedes-AMG A45 will take station in both the next-gen C53 and C63 models.
Though still wearing quite a bit of camouflage wrap, the prototypes we see here appear to be in production trim with all proper lights and body panels in place. However, don’t expect the new C-Class to debut anytime soon. Mercedes won’t compete with itself on the S-Class reveal, which is why the C-Class should get unwrapped either very late this year, or more likely, early in 2021. It could be a 2021 model-year vehicle or 2022, depending on the timing of the launch and on-sale dates in global markets.