It has been 4 years since this technology of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class was launched, and the corporate is losing no time updating the luxurious automotive with all its newest know-how. From extra highly effective but extra environment friendly powertrains, to an much more spectacular array of applied sciences, the 2019 C-Class continues to stake its place on the coronary heart of the category.
In fact, you may not guess that it is new at first look. “We did not make any main modifications as a result of we bought such good evaluations that our clients appreciated it,” Iris Schleicher, C-Class product administration, says of the design. You may spot restyled fascias, with newly normal LED head- and taillights for the US market. Different particulars embrace a complete of 20 new wheel designs globally, extra paint colours and the addition of open-pore wooden inside trim.
Visible modifications inside go together with new applied sciences. Just like the bigger E- and S-Class, the C-Class adopts a brand new steering wheel with contact controllers proper the place your thumbs relaxation; they manipulate the optionally available 12.Three-inch digital instrument cluster and the central COMAND infotainment system. Whereas a 7-inch show for COMAND stays normal, the C-Class can now be optioned with a 10.25-inch widescreen show for improved legibility. The brand new steering wheel additionally places its cruise-control switches on the wheel’s left-hand spoke, slightly than on the outdated management stalk that was by your left knee within the outgoing C-Class.
These applied sciences and buttons are all simple to make use of, and you’ll nonetheless use the console-mounted rotary knob and touchpad in the event you (or your passenger) desire. Choices embrace navigation, wi-fi telephone charging, 64-color ambient inside lights and a head-up show, to call however just a few.
The 2019 C300 encompasses a new 2.Zero-liter turbocharged I4 engine with 255 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. That is a rise of 14 horsepower over the outgoing mannequin. Key engine modifications for effectivity embrace a change to an electrical water pump, saving power, and a twin-scroll turbo that spools extra readily for improved low-end torque supply. There’s additionally a two-step valve-lift system referred to as Camtronic. At low engine hundreds, the engine switches to low valve openings so the throttle can open additional, thus decreasing parasitic pumping losses. All advised, this new M264 engine needs to be four p.c extra fuel-efficient than the outgoing M274 mannequin. For reference, in the present day’s C300 is rated for 24 miles per gallon metropolis and 33 mpg freeway, whereas the C300 4Matic all-wheel-drive mannequin scores 23/32 mpg. We’ll have to attend till nearer to the brand new automotive’s fall on-sale date for up to date EPA figures.
A brand new 2.Zero-liter turbocharged I4 engine delivers 255 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque.
The engine purrs and pulls easily, aided by supple shifts from its nine-speed computerized transmission. Though no acceleration estimates can be found, it will little question be faster than final yr’s C300 thanks not solely to the horsepower bump but in addition as a result of there is a shorter final-drive ratio (Three.27 as a substitute of three.07). The engine is just about lag and hesitation-free, and although its be aware could be gruff whenever you wind it out (particularly as a result of the transmission will fortunately maintain gears throughout enthusiastic driving), progress is a minimum of very swift.
The suspension glides over the street and the cabin stays hushed, even after I get on the autobahn and stretch the automotive’s legs a little bit bit in a limit-free part. The most important praise is that the C300 simply makes driving extremely simple: From the unbelievable modulation of its brake pedal to the engine’s linear supply to the steering’s just-right weighting, it is as a lot a delight within the metropolis as on again roads.
The Mercedes-AMG C43, that mid-tier efficiency mannequin between the C300 and the wild C63, additionally receives extra energy this yr. Its Three.Zero-liter twin-turbo V6 has a bigger turbocharger with extra enhance to bump horsepower by 23 to 385, whereas torque is regular at 384 pound-feet — although now from 2,500 to five,000 rpm, versus 2,000 to four,200 rpm beforehand. The additional grunt makes all C43 fashions faster, with the sedan and coupe hitting 60 miles per hour in four.5 seconds, Zero.1 second lower than earlier than.
It ought to go with out saying this model is much more enjoyable, scurrying by means of its 9 gears with fury. Push the sports activities exhaust button for a extra raucous soundtrack, with snarls and growling that befit a automotive that drives with this a lot vigor. The Cabriolet particularly is enjoyable, given how rather more audible that naughty exhaust is. The exhaust is so crackly and snarly, in actual fact, that locals in Gonnesweiler, the German city the place Mercedes hosted journalists, apparently complained to the police in regards to the variety of AMGs driving by means of their quiet village.
The AMG C43 is tons of enjoyable and sounds superior, however continues to be sprung a little bit too stiffly for each day use.
In comparison with final yr, AMG has additionally stiffened the automotive’s suspension and retuned its adaptive dampers, so the C43 scythes by means of bends and clings on when the street turns into all ribbon-like. It is correct, playful and simply the correct quantity of quick for whipping by means of the German countryside. All-wheel drive stays normal, with a 31/69 front-rear torque break up, so the C43 is at all times caught to the pavement but has an inkling of playfulness to its dealing with character.
Sadly, the C43 at all times rode very stiffly, and this new mannequin isn’t any exception. It is particularly noticeable in a C43 coupe, the place the suspension by no means ceases to fidget within the metropolis, even with the usual adaptive dampers set to Consolation mode. The trip does smooth out an excellent bit at pace, thankfully, however I believe the automotive shall be uncomfortable if pushed away from Germany’s ultra-smooth pavement. Equally, it takes just a few kilometers to acclimate to the C43’s hyperactive steering. It has an excellent sense of straight-ahead — very best when bombing down the autobahn — however is a little bit twitchy whenever you first dial in some lock. As soon as I adapt, although, I benefit from the quickness and precision of the steering.
Different modifications to the C43 largely mirror these utilized to the C300. It wears new entrance and rear fascias, a brand new trunk spoiler, new round exhaust and redesigned wheels, the latter of which actually have a extra aerodynamic design to assist with gasoline economic system. Inside, search for particulars like a flat-bottom AMG steering wheel, pink stitching galore and a particular “Supersports” mode for the digital cluster that may present particulars like tire strain, G forces and enhance ranges — and can flash pink as you method redline and must seize one of many small plastic shift paddles.
New open-pore wooden is a pleasant addition to an already top-notch inside.
If the design is not precisely revolutionary, all of the components beneath it positive are. Mercedes says that 50 p.c of the 2019 C-Class’ components are new and that 80 p.c of its electrical structure is new. The latter statistic displays what number of extra applied sciences have been borrowed from the E- and S-Class. As an example, the active-safety options have extra superior cameras and radars now in order that the C-Class can present semi-autonomous driving help in additional situations.
The Distronic adaptive cruise additionally provides two new options already discovered on the E-Class. If it is activated and also you sign a lane-change on the freeway, the automotive will deal with steering into the following lane for you. It really works simply effective, however the Mercedes programming is so cautious and takes so lengthy that I would slightly simply change lanes myself. You too can select route-adaptive cruise management which can robotically gradual earlier than curves or roundabouts if Distronic is enabled. It really works effective, however once more, it is so hesitant and slows down a lot that I desire driving manually or with the function turned off.
Maybe essentially the most fascinating new expertise is designed to let you understand if somebody bumps into your automotive whereas it is parked. If sensors detect an impression whereas the anti-theft system is energetic, the C-Class will ship an alert to the proprietor by way of the Mercedes Me telematics smartphone app and retailer a warning within the infotainment system. Mercedes Me will launch within the US within the fall, concurrent with the arrival of the up to date C-Class.
An optionally available 10.25-inch middle show is bigger than earlier than, however it nonetheless runs Mercedes’ older COMAND infotainment system.
To exhibit, Mercedes even let journalists drive a Sensible Fortwo right into a parked C-Class, which might be the one time a PR rep will ask us to crash a automotive (for the file, the bumpers of each automobiles survived with nary a scratch). The system works as supposed, with a notification on the Comand show as quickly because the automotive is restarted. Sadly, the automotive will not file video proof of the crime from its onboard cameras — although that’s technically doable, Mercedes says that the corporate hasn’t but found out whether or not that is authorized in each nation the place the C-Class shall be bought.
Even with out that technical gimmick, the refreshed C-Class is massively spectacular. Whether or not you get the luxurious C300 or the racy AMG C43, it delivers luxurious, driving satisfaction and elegance in huge doses. Although the automotive did not really feel in any respect dated, the 2019 Mercedes C-Class has been up to date simply sufficient to make sure that it stays contemporary over the approaching years. Purchase it for the expertise, purchase it for the consolation, or purchase it for the way in which it drives: No matter your cause, you may be happy.
The updates might not be substantial, however they’re sufficient to make sure the C-Class stays aggressive for years to return.
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