By Khulekani Dumisa
Mercedes-Benz has taken covers off the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class following a number of leaks. These are understandable considering the popularity of the car. Mercedes-Benz has sold over 10,5million since1982 and in 2020, 1 in every Mercedes-Benz vehicles sold was a C-Class.
Looks can best be descried as evolutionary rather than revolutionary. Not a bad thing considering how good looking the outgoing car is. Upfront, the car gets a new light design and a large new grille. All models feature a central star and the design of the radiator grille differs based on the trim. The base model has a central star and louvres. In the Avantgarde line, there are additional decorative elements in the louvres, while the radiator grille and front apron feature chrome surrounds. The distinguishing feature of the AMG Line is the diamond grille with the star design in chrome.
The new C-Class is equipped with LED High Performance headlamps as standard. The digital light system familiar from the new S-Class is available as an option.
The rear-end takes after the new S-Class. The lights, for the first time have a two-piece design in the C-Class, with the light functions divided between the side wall and boot lid lamps. The bumper is also newly designed with new exhaust tips.
In terms of dimensions, the new C-Class is 65 mm longer and 10 mm wider than the model it replaces. Wheel sizes range between 17- to 19-inches.
There are three new paint finishes – spectral blue, high-tech silver and opalite white – have been added to the colour range.
The interior is where the magic happens. As in the S-Class, the driver area features a high-resolution LCD screen. It is free-standing and this sets the driver display apart from traditional cockpits with classic round dials. Customers have a choice between a 10.25-inch (26.0 cm) or a 12.3-inch (31.2 cm) version. The look of the screens can be individualised with three display styles (Discreet, Sporty, Classic) and three modes (Navigation, Assistance, Service).
The central display housing the infotainment has a screen diagonal (as is the case in the new S-Class) of 9.5 inches (24.1 cm) as standard. A larger version measuring 11.9 inches or 30.2 cm is optionally available. Also standing out are flattened round vents reminiscent of aircraft engine nacelles. The C-Class also gets the latest generation of Mercedes-Benz steering wheels and what appears to be new seat designs.
A dashboard covered with man-made leather and featuring nappa-look beltlines is available for the C-Class (optional equipment, standard with AMG Line).
Like the new S-Class, the new C-Class is equipped with the second generation of MBUX (Mercedes-Benz User Experience). With MBUX Smart Home function, the C-Class connects with your home to control certain functions there.
A colour head-up display can be ordered as optional equipment. The driver sees a virtual image measuring 9 x 3 inches (approx. 23 x 8 cm) floating above the bonnet at a distance of about 4.5m.
Boot space comes in at 455 litres for the sedan model.
The new C-Class is electrified throughout thanks to plug-in hybrids and mild hybrids with 48-volt technology and integrated starter-generator. Due to a high-efficiency battery system, it achieves an electric range of about 100 kilometres (WLTP) as a plug-in hybrid. That is unprecedented in this category to date according to Mercedes Benz.
There are five petrol engines at launch with power outputs ranging from125 kW (C180) to 190 kW (C300 4Matic). Two diesel engines complete the line up with power outputs of 147 kW (C220d) and 195 kW (C300d). The engines are paired with a 9G-TRONIC (automatic) transmission.
Fourth-generation plug-in hybrids will follow soon after the launch.
Local arrival of the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class is yet to be announced.
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