A new type of comfort zone is here to challenge the status quo. The 6th generation C-Class boasts a minimalist design, luxurious comfort and innovative assistance systems. There’s no stopping the global success story that is the Mercedes-Benz C-Class.
Since its introduction in 1982, with the launch of the so-called ‘Baby Benz’ 190, more than 10.5 million C-Class vehicles have been sold in more than 100 markets around the world.
The new C-Class, which reaches local showrooms from December 2021, is manufactured in the Mercedes-Benz Cars plants in Bremen, Beijing and East London. R13 billion has already been invested in numerous upgrades at the East London plant in preparation for the production of the new model, providing a major boost to the local automotive industry.
Mark Raine, Co- CEO for Mercedes-Benz South Africa and Executive Director for Mercedes-Benz Cars South Africa says the fact that East London is one of three global manufacturing plants for the new C-Class is a ‘massive success story’ for the local industry. The state-of-the-art plant has been expanded by 100 000 sqm, features more than 500 high-tech robots, and is highly energy efficient and environmentally friendly. The new paint shop reduces energy consumption per vehicle by 25%, while the implementation of energy efficiency measures and more efficient technologies and processes will see the plant save more than 16 MWh in energy every year. Through certification and a carbon offset strategy, the East London plant will be CO₂ neutral from January 2022.
Bigger, better, sleeker
The new C-Class features a dynamic exterior design and a sumptuous interior that borrows heavily from the flagship S-Class, and sets new standards in efficiency. “The new C-Class will be launched into the South Africa market initially with the C200 and C220d engine derivatives, both sporting four-cylinder units from the current modular FAME (Family of Modular Engines) Mercedes-Benz engine family,” said Selvin Govender, Director of Marketing and Sales for Mercedes-Benz Cars. The C200 boasts power delivery of 150kw and 300Nm of torque, while the C220d delivers 147kw and 440Nm of Torque. The C220d achieves a combined fuel consumption of 4.6l/100km and the C200 achieves a combined fuel consumption of 6.6l/100km. (Disclaimer: The fuel consumption values quoted are NEDC combined values, the WLTP values will be finalised and communicated later).
The new C-Class is considerably larger than its predecessor, with a length of 4751 mm and a width of 1820 mm. The wheelbase has increased by 25 mm to 2865 mm, with both the front and rear passengers benefiting from the increased exterior dimensions.
The designers have reduced lines to a minimum, which accentuates the so-called ‘catwalk line’ or shoulder line even further. Other features producing the sporty, superior appearance include the wide track and the flush 18 to 19-inch wheels in modern designs. The rear-end design is typical of a Mercedes-Benz saloon, with the design of the tail lamps offering an unmistakable day and night appearance.
Inside the C-Class, the driver area features a free-standing high-resolution LCD screen that appears to float in front of the wing profile and the trim. This sets the driver display apart from traditional cockpits with classic round dials. The shift to digitalisation is also obvious in the central display, and the vehicle functions can be controlled using the touchscreen.
Like the S-Class, the new C-Class is equipped with the second generation of MBUX (Mercedes-Benz User Experience), making the vehicle interior even more digital and intelligent. The look of the screens can be individualised with three display styles (Discreet, Sporty, Classic) and three modes (Navigation, Assistance, Service).
The voice assistant ‘Hey Mercedes’ becomes more interactive and capable of learning by activating online services in the Mercedes me App. Moreover, certain actions can be performed even without the activation keyword. ‘Hey Mercedes’ also explains vehicle functions and can recognise the vehicle occupants by their voices.
All C-Class models come standard with the 9G-TRONIC transmission. The new suspension provides the basis for a high level of suspension, ride and noise comfort, agile handling and driving fun. The new C-Class is optionally also available with continuously adjustable damping and a sport suspension.
Driving assistance: support in hazardous situations
Compared to the previous C-Class series, the latest generation of the Driving Assistance Package has additional and advanced functions. These reduce driver workload in day-to-day situations, for more comfortable and safe driving. When danger threatens, the assistance systems are able to respond to impending collisions as the situation demands.