Mercedes-Benz Delivers 300,000 New C-Class Models
20th June, 2008
In the year since its market launch, the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class is continuing the success story set by its predecessor. Globally, more than 300,000 customers have purchased either a sedan or estate variant of the new C-Class since its international introduction on 31st March, 2007.
“The sedan got off to an excellent start, and since its premiere at dealerships at the end of last year, the new C-Class station wagon has also been enjoying high popularity,” says Dr. Klaus Maier, Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing Mercedes-Benz Cars.
“Both models, in fact, have posted growth rates of 70 per cent on the corresponding periods from the prior year since their respective launches. As a result, the new C-Class has been the worldwide leader in its market segment since the beginning of 2008.”
German customers are very enthusiastic about the new C-Class: according to Germany’s Federal Motor Transport Authority, the model was once again the top-selling vehicle in the mid-range segment in April. The most important market for the C-Class is Germany which accounts for 25 percent of total sales, followed by USA, UK, Italy, and South Africa. A total of 290,000 C-Class sedans from the new W 204 Series have been sold worldwide since market launch in 2007 and 25,000 customers have taken delivery of a new C-Class station wagon since that model variant was first introduced in December.
Australian customers have also flocked to showrooms for the new C-Class. Underlining this model’s national popularity, last month saw this car secure more than 38 percent market share in Australia, outperforming its nearest segment rival by almost double.
A particularly successful feature of the new C-Class is the clear optical differentiation between the model’s three equipment lines.
“In the first year of sales, one out of every two C-Class customers in Germany chose the Avantgarde line and in other core markets the share of total sales sometimes is even higher,” says Maier.
“The response of our customers to the sporty design of the C-Class Avantgarde even exceeded our expectations. This new product strategy makes the vehicle very attractive to the most diverse customers within the heterogeneous C-Class customer base and it also enables us to win over new customers to the Mercedes-Benz brand.”
Along with the new model’s distinctive design, C-Class customers are also attracted by the vehicle’s even more dynamic chassis, which features a selective damping system that also offers great comfort.
Other major selling points include a further refined telematics system with Bluetooth, and a new Linguatronic voice-command system. In addition, the estate takes the trademark strengths of the sedan - including safety, agility and comfort - combining them with a significant increase in spaciousness and versatility. With maximum cargo capacity of 1,465 litres, the new estate offers more space than any other premium station wagon in its segment.
The new C-Class model series has won numerous international awards since its premiere. For example, the C-Class sedan easily beat its competitors in Germany’s largest survey for the most popular automobile in January 2008, winning this year’s prestigious Gelbe Engel award presented by Germany’s ADAC automobile association.
In addition, readers of AUTO BILD magazine voted the C-Class Germany’s most attractive sedan, while the publication auto motor und sport crowned it the most attractive mid-range model.
What’s more, 350,000 participants in Europe’s largest Internet vote chose the C-Class for the 2007 “Carolina Internet Auto Award” as the most popular car in Europe.
Globally, Mercedes-Benz offers six four-cylinder and seven six-cylinder engine variants for the C-Class, as well as the 'fire-breathing' C 63 AMG, powered by AMG’s own 6.2-litre race-bred V8 engine. About one-third of the sedan model’s customers worldwide have opted for the turbo-diesel C 220 CDI, while 20 per cent have purchased a C 200 Kompressor.
The C 220 CDI is also the vehicle of choice for around half of the estate model’s customers. Some 75 percent of all C-Class station wagons sold around the world are diesel engine versions. The C 220 CDI estate will be in Australian showrooms from this September.
Mercedes-Benz recently expanded the European C-Class sedan line-up by adding particularly fuel-efficient BlueEFFICIENCY models: fuel consumption in the C 180 KOMPRESSOR and C 200 CDI is 12 percent lower in the BlueEFFICIENCY versions, with no sacrifices in terms of the high level of comfort and outstanding safety features so typical of Mercedes-Benz vehicles. The turbo-diesel C 200 CDI (100 kW) consumes just 5.1 litres of fuel per 100 kilometres in the BlueEFFICIENCY version, while the C 180 KOMPRESSOR (115 kW) requires 6.5 litres of premium petrol to travel 100 kilometres. These consumption figures correspond to emissions of 135 and 156 grammes of carbon dioxide per kilometre, respectively.
Mercedes-Benz will also begin offering European customers a third C-Class BlueEFFICIENCY model at the end of 2008: the C 350 CGI, featuring petrol direct injection. This vehicle’s six-cylinder engine will consume about ten per cent less fuel than the conventional sedan with the current V6 engine. The C 350 CGI will thus offer a combination of responsive power, agility, safety, fuel economy and environmental compatibility that is unique in its vehicle segment.
For their new BlueEFFICIENCY models, Mercedes engineers used potential from all areas of development. The aim was not only to further decrease weight, drag and rolling resistance, but also to more efficiently organise the new sedans energy management system. As an added feature, BlueEFFICIENCY models are equipped with a new cockpit shift display that informs the driver when to shift gears in order to achieve maximum fuel efficiency. Experience gained with the Mercedes-Benz “ECO training” programme shows that an economical and energy-conscious driving style can result in fuel savings of as much as 15 per cent - without giving up any driving pleasure.
The new Mercedes-Benz C-Class sedan and estate are the first cars in their market segment to come with an environmental certificate. By issuing this certificate, the TÜV Süd Management Service GmbH technical inspectorate company has confirmed the environmentally responsible development of both the C-Class sedan and estate, which boast further advances across the entire vehicle lifecycle in key areas including fuel consumption, exhaust gas emissions and the materials used in its manufacture.
The new CLC-Class sports coupé will arrive at the first European dealerships this month. Among other things, the model series will offer customers an attractive entry-level variant to the Mercedes-Benz coupé family. The CLC’s sporty appearance clearly sets it apart, as the vehicle’s front and rear were completely redesigned in keeping with the ultramodern Mercedes-Benz design idiom.
The CLC also meets the high standards for safety, comfort, environmental compatibility and functionality that are hallmarks of Mercedes-Benz. The model’s technical highlights include an all-new direct steering system for even greater agility when cornering, state-of-the-art infotainment systems with a colour display and a more powerful four-cylinder engine that now delivers 135 kW for the CLC 200 Kompressor.
The CLC is the successor to the C-Class sports coupé, which has been purchased by approximately 320,000 customers around the world since 2001. The majority of these customers were new to Mercedes-Benz. In fact, approximately 70 per cent of these buyers were new to the Mercedes-Benz brand, making this sports coupé a very successful model in the Mercedes-Benz product offensive.
In addition, the two-door sports car has succeeded in keeping established customers loyal to the Mercedes-Benz brand as well, and over 40 per cent of those who purchased one subsequently bought an even larger Mercedes-Benz model.
C-Class sedans for the Australian market are produced in Germany at Mercedes-Benz plants in Sindelfingen and Bremen. They are also built in East London, South Africa, and have been manufactured in Beijing, China, since March 2008 as well. The estate model is produced exclusively in Bremen and the new CLC coupé is manufactured at Mercedes-Benz’ Juiz de Fora plant in Brazil. This new coupé model will be available in Australian showrooms this August.
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