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Mercedes-Benz C-Class


More of the Sounds of Silence

by Stephen Walker

7th April, 2008 (copyright image)

The C-Class is the best selling model in the expansive range of Mercedes-Benz cars.

And the new generation Mercedes-Benz C-Class has arrived on the Australian market ready to win over new customers for the respected German marque.

For now, it's the C-Class sedans that has everyone's attention. But there will be a new C-Class wagon next month and during the 3rd quarter this year a new range of C-Class coupes will arrive locally. The new coupes will be known as the CLC-Class.

The Mercedes-Benz C-Class sedans are the subject of this article.

The new sedans are available with the now traditional Mercedes-Benz trim levels, Classic, Elegance and Avantgarde. The high performance version of the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class, the C 63 AMG, is covered separately.

Pricing for the C-Class model range (excluding C 63 AMG)

Recommended Retail Price* (RRP)
C 200 Kompressor
C 220 CDI
C 280 Petrol V6
C 320 CDI

* Excludes dealer delivery and the various statutory charges. (copyright image)

The new model is slightly bigger than the outgoing model. The larger dimensions provide a roomier interior, which is a welcome feature in this class of car.

Mercedes-Benz expects to sell 5,000 units per annum of the new elegantly styled C-Class sedans in Australia, giving the company leadership of the segment.

Standard Equipment

PARKTRONIC, PRE-SAFE®, Cruise control with SPEEDTRONIC, Speed-sensitive power steering, Side-bags in rear, Front airbags with two-stage deployment sensors; side-bags as well as window-bags, Front armrest, with stowage compartment, Heated exterior mirrors (electrically adjustable, aspherical, with clear-lens indicators), Outside temperature display, Headlamp Assist, Power windows (with one-touch control), Belt tensioners with belt force limiters (front and outer rear seats), Remote boot lid release, Heated rear window with time relay, Clear-lens headlamps with projector-beam technology, Steering column manually adjustable for height and reach, Multifunction steering wheel with trip computer, Clear-lens fog lamps, Seat occupancy sensor for front passenger seat, Front seats electrically adjustable for height and backrest angle, ASSYST service interval indicator, Central locking (remote control with selective and global opening) and THERMATIC 2-zone automatic climate control.


Elegance Model-line (C 200 K, C 220 CDI) $3,520
Elegance Model-line (C 280, C 320 CDI) Standard inclusion
Avantgarde Model-line (C 200 K, C 220 CDI) $5,730
Avantgarde Model-line (C 280, C 320 CDI) No charge option

AMG Sports Package * C 200 K, C 220 CDI * (Includes Avantgarde model-line. Not available with Classic or Elegance) $12,070
AMG Sports Package * C 280, C 320 CDI * (Includes Avantgarde model-line. Not available with Classic or Elegance) $6,340

Dynamic Handling Package (includes Activation button for "SPORT" suspension setting, Revised sensors for adaptive accelerator, 15 mm ride height reduction, Active Damping System integrated into Agility Control suspension, More direct steering ratio with variable centering integrated into speed-sensitive power steering and 18" AMG light-alloy wheels) (All models) Only available with AMG Sports Package. $3,520

Vision Package (all models) (includes Harman/Kardon LOGIC7® 450 W sound system with 12 high performance loudspeakers (including sub-woofer) and additional amplifier. Includes Dolby DTS 5.1 Surround when specified with COMAND APS, Bi-Xenon headlights (fixed, not active) with cornering light unction, dynamic range adjustment and headlamp cleaning system, and Glass electric sunroof with tilt/slide function) $4,530

Additional options are available from a long list of optional equipment.

Technical features of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class sedan

Engine and transmission choice

Numerous engines and various equipment grades make for a vast array of versions in the new C-Class line-up.

There are two petrol engines and two diesel engines available, all with automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive. (copyright image)

The model variants are named to line-up with the chosen engine. The entry level C-Class sedan is the C 200 K fitted with a 1.8 litre 4-cylinder supercharged engine, priced from $56,990 (RRP). The next model is the C 220 CDI, which is powered by a 2.2 litre turbocharged diesel. Then there are the two upmarket models, which come standard with the 'Elegance' trim level. Namely, the C 280 which features a 3 litre petrol-fuelled V6. Top of the regular C-Class sedan range is the C 320 CDI, which is powered by a 3 litre turbocharged V6 diesel.

Transmission choice is determined by the engine choice: 5-speed automatic transmission is standard with the C 200 K and the C 220 CDI. Whilst the 7G-TRONIC 7-speed automatic transmission comes with the C 280 and the C 320 CDI.

Standard across the sedan line-up are the following features:
ADAPTIVE BRAKE with ABS, ASR, brake drying function and hill start assist
AGILITY CONTROL package with selective damping system Brake Assist (BAS)
ESP (Electronic Stability Programme).


Mercedes-Benz provides a comprehensive three year/unlimited kilometre warranty, with roadside assistance (conditions apply) on all new cars sold in Australia.

On the road in the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class

By driving 3 examples of the new C-Class I came away thinking that the variety of models will suit a vast array of buyers. The entry level C 200 K, with its small 1.8 litre supercharged engine, is for those who are satisfied with adequate performance, rather than good performance.

Whilst the C220 CDI offers suitable performance with good economy from its relatively small 2.2 litre 4 cylinder diesel.

The C 280, with a 3 litre V6, provides good performance and it will be popular at $86,000 (RRP). This model comes in either the nicely packaged Elegance or trendy Avantgarde trim level at this price.

The driving qualities of the new C-Class will impress many folks, just as the three-pointed star itself impresses many prestige car buyers amongst others.

However, with continuing improvements to the safety of motoring, Mercedes-Benz continues to impress the world by enhancing, yet again, the safety features of the new C-Class. This by itself will find buyers, but the C-Class is an improved car and has come along at a time when the market is booming and at a time when Mercedes-Benz has the attention of many prestige car buyers.

Upcoming, of course, will be numerous road tests on various C-Class models. In the meantime, it must be acknowledged that the most popular model in the Mercedes-Benz line-up remains a big hit for the company. With more versions still to arrive on our market, you can be sure that the C-Class will occupy a great deal of media coverage for quite some time to come.

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Other Mercedes-Benz content: here.

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