There will be more incentive than ever to purchase the most affordable model of Australia’s best-selling luxury car, the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, with the addition of a new value package, known as Edition C.

Buyers of the popular Mercedces-Benz C 200 sedan can now select the Edition C option, which adds a glass electric sunroof, smartphone integration in the form of Apple CarPlay or Google Android  Auto, metallic paint (excludes designo) and eye-catching 19-inch five twin-spoke alloy wheels.   

The Mercedes-Benz C-Class was Australia’s most popular luxury car in 2017 and is set to carry on as a firm favourite of luxury car buyers. The C 200 sedan is equipped with a 2.0-litre, four-cylinder petrol engine making 135kW and 300Nm, coupled with a 9G-TRONIC nine-speed automatic transmission. 

Standard equipment includes ARTICO upholstery, a seven-inch colour display with touchpad control and media interface, satellite navigation, digital radio, electric front seats, keyless start, THERMATIC dual-zone climate control, black piano lacquer and brushed aluminium trim, rain-sensing wipers and LED headlights. 

The Edition C package is only available in conjunction with the Mercedes-Benz C 200 sedan until May 31 for just $60,900 drive away*.

*$60,900 is the maximum recommended drive away campaign price of the standard specification new petrol        C 200 Edition C ordered between 1 April – 31 May 2018 at participating retailers, while stocks last.

Mercedes-Benz has announced pricing and specification for the all new Mercedes-Benz C-Class Cabriolet, the first open-top driving experience based on the award winning C-Class. Featuring extensive use of high-quality materials and outstanding driver comfort and assistance technologies, the new cabriolet delivers an exceptional driving experience 365 days a year.

"Our new C-Class Cabriolet is the entry into the world of premium cabriolets from Mercedes-Benz. Sporty and youthful in character and styling, it offers unadulterated open-air driving pleasure all year round," says Prof. Dr Thomas Weber, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and responsible for Group Research and Mercedes-Benz Cars Development.

Sporty and youthful

The C‑Class Cabriolet is also a consistent embodiment of the Mercedes-Benz design philosophy: sensual purity as the definition of contemporary luxury. It exhibits an independence of character with a visibly sporty expression and youthfully fresh appeal.

Interior – modernity and lifestyle

Occupants enjoy an ambience that, while based on the interior of the C-Class Saloon, offers a fresh interpretation with typical cabriolet features. High-grade materials and build quality give the interior a modern feel of sportiness and luxury. Based on the Coupé, the sport seats feature an integral look with muscular side bolsters and organically integrated head restraints as well as AIRSCARF neck-level heating (optional on C 200). The rear seats are in the form of individual seats. Their backrests offer a through-loading feature, can be split 50:50 for high everyday practicality and can be completely folded down.

Premium-class fabric soft top

Standard for our market is a multi-layer acoustic soft top available in dark brown, dark blue, dark red or black. The acoustic soft top has a multi-layered structure with acoustically effective damping and insulating materials. This significantly reduces wind and driving noise. This makes for better speech intelligibility even at high speeds, and better insulation from disruptive ambient noise. At the same time the acoustic soft top provides very good thermal insulation, and therefore optimal climatic and noise comfort for full all-year suitability.

Derived from the S-Class Cabriolet, the soft top also meets high quality standards in terms of durability and operation. It can be opened and closed in 20 seconds, and at speeds up to 50 km/h. Its construction is a combination of magnesium, extruded aluminium and steel. This not only makes it around eight kilograms lighter than a comparable steel structure, but also extremely robust. During testing, the carwash-compatible, dirt-repellent and weather-resistant soft top was subjected to 20,000 opening and closing cycles to ensure operating reliability throughout the vehicle's lifecycle.

After opening, the soft top including its heatable glass rear window is quietly lowered into the soft top compartment in the boot. As a powered tensioning arm exerts tension on the soft top fabric, the soft top compartment cover does not need to do so. This means that no recesses for locking mechanisms needed to be cut into the soft top compartment cover, which consequently has a homogeneous, uninterrupted surface. In shape and colour the cover of the soft-top compartment is an integral part of the interior, as it is made of the same material as the beltline.

A manual boot partition is standard equipment in the C-Class Cabriolet, so that the soft top can be deposited in its compartment without damaging the soft top or the contents of the boot. When the soft top is closed and the boot partition is open, the entire boot capacity can be used. The height of the loading space can be limited by pulling the panel to its lower position. A golf bag of normal size, or e.g. a standard crate of drinks, can be comfortably loaded and unloaded.

The side windows slightly retract automatically when opening and closing the doors, and are then raised again. This means that they are fully enclosed by the seals. This also minimises wind noise.

In conjunction with Keyless Start or Keyless Go, the soft top can be opened and closed using the electronic key or the soft top switch in the centre console. The opening/closing procedure stops as soon as the soft top switch is released. Immediate reversal of the movement sequence is possible at any time.

Summer is included

Customers opting for a cabriolet prefer to drive as often as possible with the top down. As in the E- and S-Class Cabriolets, occupants can enjoy maximum open-air comfort in the new C-Class Cabriolet with the AIRCAP and AIRSCARF (optional on C 200 Cabriolet) systems, which make the joys of fresh air pleasant even at low temperatures.

Inconspicuously integrated into the roof frame, the electric AIRCAP draught stop system was specially developed for Mercedes-Benz cabriolets and is coupled to an electric draught stop behind the rear seats, which reduces the interior turbulence also for the rear passengers at the press of a button.

Safe protection 

The new C-Class Cabriolet will also arrive with exceptional safety features as standard including: 9 Airbags, COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST PLUS with semi-autonomous braking, Blind Spot Assist, PRE-SAFE®, ATTENTION ASSIST, an Active Bonnet and a 360 degree camera.  In addition, models including and above the C 300 Cabriolet will arrive with the Driver Assistance Package PLUS as standard, which includes DISTRONIC PLUS with Steering Assist, PRE-SAFE® PLUS, BAS PLUS with Cross-Traffic Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist and Active Blind Spot Assist. 

In an accident, optimal protection is afforded by the high structural safety of the body as well as by the restraint systems, especially the comprehensive complement of airbags. These include:

  • adaptive front airbags for driver and front passenger
  • a kneebag on the driver's side
  • thorax/pelvis bags for driver and front passenger
  • windowbags integrated in the top edges of the front door panels
  • Side airbags for rear seat occupants

The roll-over protection system is specific to the Cabriolet. It consists of two cartridges that are fully retracted behind the rear seats and therefore invisible. If a roll-over is imminent, these cartridges are pyrotechnically fired, whereupon they shoot out to provide a survival space together with the A-pillar.

Light and safe bodyshell

In a cabriolet, the lack of a roof often results in reduced body stiffness. This fact was taken into consideration by the designers in developing the C-Class Saloon. This allowed them to adapt the bodyshell to meet the particular needs of the Cabriolet. Consequently, this model, too, features an exemplary stiff design of the kind required for high driving dynamics, while utilising lightweight construction and a high proportion of aluminium.

The model range

The entry level C 200 Cabriolet utilises a 2.0 L 4-cylinder turbocharged engine and produces a maximum output of 135kW and 300Nm of torque, in conjunction with a 9G-TRONIC 9 speed transmission. The range will arrive on local shores with a host of outstanding equipment as standard including: Metallic paintwork, 18” AMG wheels, heat-reflecting leather upholstery, AMG Body Styling, Sports Suspension with Sports Direct-Steer system, LED Intelligent Light System, DYNAMIC SELECT driving modes, GARMIN® MAP PILOT navigation, DAB+ Digital Radio, Head-up Display, Electric front seats with memory function and Black Ash Open Pore wood trim.

Next up is the powerful C 300 Cabriolet producing 180 kW of power and 370 Nm of torque from its 2.0 L 4-cylinder turbocharged engine. In addition to the standard equipment of the C 200 Cabriolet, the C 300 arrives with 19” AMG Wheels, a Burmester® surround sound system, COMAND Online navigation, Heated Front Seats, AIRSCARF Neck-level heating, KEYLESS-GO and a Sports Exhaust system.

High performance from Mercedes-AMG

Boasting the AMG brand’s trademark driving performance, the new Mercedes-AMG C 43 Cabriolet 4MATIC utilises a 3.0 L V6 engine to deliver an impressive maximum power output of 270 kW and a peak torque of 520 Nm. A 9G-TRONIC 9 speed transmission and AMG RIDE-CONTROL sports suspension, in conjuction with the 4MATIC all wheel drive ensures dynamic performance, and an acceleration time of 4.8 seconds, 0-100km/h.

The range topping Mercedes-AMG C 63 S Cabriolet utilises the incredible 4.0L V8 bi-turbo engine, delivering 375kW and 700Nm of torque, while accelerating from 0–100 km/h in just 4.1 seconds. The C 63 S Cabriolet incorporates a host of outstanding high performance AMG equipment over the C 43 variant, including: 19/20” AMG Wheels, AMG active dynamic engine mounts, AMG electronic rear axle locking differential, AMG high-performance composite braking system and AMG performance exhaust system. In addition, the C 63 S variant arrives with Nappa Leather upholstery, Digital TV Tuner and an AIR-BALANCE package as standard.

The new C-Class Cabriolet is now available to order and will be on-sale in October 2016 with the AMG C 43 4MATIC and C 63 S variants arriving in early 2017.

Prices are as follows:

  • C 200 Cabriolet: $85,900 (MRLP)
  • C 300 Cabriolet: $99,900 (MRLP)
  • AMG C 43 Cabriolet 4MATIC: $119,900 (MRLP)
  • AMG C 63 S Cabriolet: $179,900 (MRLP)

My Drive this week was the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, C 300 Bluetec Hybrid. Following on from my review last week of the C 200 and C 250, this week I’ve got the most premium variant of the German car manufacturer’s small car range.

A recap from last week – the C Class uses a new chassis structure half-made out of aluminium, reducing weight by 40kg over the previous model. It’s physically bigger as well, although the exterior design has gone through what you might call very progressive evolution. Inside you have a very elegant cabin with the complex look simplified, more room especially in the back, supportive seats and rear air vents for comfortable travelling even in extreme weather conditions.

So let’s take a look at the C 300 Bluetec Hybrid. We have a 2.1 litre twin turbo charged diesel engine producing 150 kilowatts of power and 500 Newton-metres of torque, connected to a seven speed automatic transmission driving the rear wheels. We also have a small 20 kilowatt 250 Newton-metre electric motor connected to the same automatic gearbox. Both of them work together to provide the best of both worlds – the driving range and high-end torque of an internal combustion engine with the efficiency, regenerative braking and low-end torque of an electric motor.

At least, that’s the idea. Mercedes-Benz has engineered a hybrid car that is smooth, refined, powerful and luxurious, there’s no doubt about that. However, the improvements over the regular C 250 Bluetec are limited. The C 250 Bluetec has the same engine as the C 300 I’m testing today – it’s only missing the hybrid gear. So the C 300 – taking off from a standing start, the diesel engine fires up in every situation other than feathering the throttle. According to the dashboard indicator, the electric motor assists the engine under very heavy acceleration, but otherwise it stays dormant. When braking, the engine will switch off and the motor captures energy to store in the lithium ion battery, although what it captures is quite small and most of the battery power is actually generated by the engine driving the motor. Once you stop, the engine stays off and if you have the air conditioning on, the electric compressor keeps running and the cabin stays warm or cool.

So that’s all and good but the thing is, the hybrid system doesn’t seem to have any real benefit on fuel economy. The official combined fuel consumption figure is four litres per 100 kilometres, but good luck achieving that. My best fuel economy result was seven litres per 100 on a mix of city and highway legs, and that was actually driving very gently. Under more regular driving, it was in the upper seven range, so I guess you could say you get consistent fuel economy, but still, this is a diesel hybrid car putting out these numbers. In the end, Benz’s official figures say it all – the C 300 Bluetec Hybrid is four litres per 100 on the combined cycle, while the C 250 Bluetec normal diesel is 4.5 litres. A small difference indeed.

Again as mentioned last week, handling is balanced well between confidence and comfort, steering is now electric and feels a little light but still connected. Interestingly enough, the brakes feel exactly the same as the other ‘normal’ C Class cars, despite the fact there’s a regenerative braking system in play. This probably owes to the small amount of energy actually being captured, so I’m feeling the usual friction brakes all the time.

Being a C 300, creature comforts are a step up over the lower variants. Proximity keyless entry, leather seats and 19 inch wheels join the standard feature list, which includes LED headlights, DAB+ digital radio and automatic emergency braking. Of course, the option list allows for quite a bit of customisation.

The C 300 Bluetec Hybrid only comes in a sedan body and retails from $74,900 dollars plus on-road costs.

In wrapping up, you have a typical Mercedes-Benz car – refined, comfortable, and sporty, but sadly, the hybrid is very mild for me and I’d be happy with a regular C 250 Bluetec if I had to choose.

March 7th 2015
Albert Malik

My Drive this week was the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, C 200 and C 250. Yes, that’s two cars, but I wanted to have a little bit of time testing both of them over the last couple of weeks before wrapping them up into a single review for today.

The C-Class is a badge with a lot of history, first appearing back in 1993 and going through three different generations before the current W205 series that I’m looking at today. While there has been significant evolution throughout each generation, the W205 is important because Mercedes uses a new chassis structure half-made out of aluminium, reducing weight by 40kg over the previous model. It’s also bigger than the W204 before it, getting more wheelbase, length, width inside the cabin and a bit more headroom inside.

The exterior design hasn’t undergone any major changes. There’s been subtle refinement here and there, with headlamps receiving minor changes and door handles slightly changing positioning but really, this is a C-Class we’re all familiar with, very familiar with. Yet, you can feel that this is indeed a new car. I think Mercedes has struck a nice balance here.

Moving inside there are many more signs that this is indeed a new car. The dashboard is the biggest sign, with a new screen above the centre console pulling duty for all of the car’s accessory functions such as audio and air conditioning. The button-heavy controls have been simplified, producing a less ‘busy’ look that flows very well. The cabin is much roomier than the outgoing model and very comfortable, with significant leg room in the back. The seats are supportive and rear air vents help to make the whole cabin a comfortable place to be, no matter what the season.

As you’d expect with Mercedes-Benz, there’s a variety of powertrain options available to suit your needs. All engines in the C-Class now come turbocharged, whether they’re petrol or diesel, with four different powertrains to choose from. I had a look at the C 200 and C 250 variants, which are both equipped with a two litre turbocharged four cylinder engine driving the rear wheels through a seven speed automatic transmission. Each engine is configured differently for either variant. In the C 200 it produces a maximum 135 kilowatts of power and 300 Newton-metres of torque, while in the C 250 it goes a little higher, another 20 kilowatts to 155 and another 50 Newton-metres to 350. Both engines average an official six litres per 100 kilometres, and in my driving they both tended to sit in the eight litre range. The only difference between the two is maximum performance, but without a stopwatch it’s difficult to notice. They are both refined, quiet and smooth power plants, quick to respond but otherwise doing their job quietly. It’s the same story with the gearbox – switching gears with a minimum of fuss and intrusion to make the drive that much more comfortable. Until you switch the driving mode of course – the new C-Class comes with four different driving profiles and changing to the Sport or Sport Plus settings quickens gear switching and has the engines growling to life for more energetic, sportier driving.

Handling is calibrated with a beautiful balance of poise and comfort. Throw the C-Class around some bends and it handles them with aplomb, but encounter any unexpected bumps and they’re dispatched in silence. There’s an optional air suspension package available, but the standard fixed suspension is simply an excellent balance. The C-Class steering has transitioned to an electric setup in this generation, giving a slightly lighter feel that transmits less road feedback – great for refinement but perhaps a little less sporty. Finally, the braking package does its job with confidence.

So let’s look at creature comforts. Interestingly, the standard feature list is quite impressive, with front electric seats joining new age comforts such as LED headlights, DAB+ digital radio and automatic emergency braking in every C-Class variant. There’s also optional technology such as the air suspension I mentioned as well as a head-up display and touchpad controller for the centre console audio information system.
Pricing starts from $60,990 dollars plus on-road costs for the C-200, jumping up to $68,990 dollars for the C-250.

All in all, you have a typical Mercedes-Benz car – refined, comfortable, but sporty if necessary.

February 28th 2015
Albert Malik