Mercedes-Benz is writing the next chapter of success with the all-new C‑Class. An interior with an exciting, high-class ambience, touchpad and head-up display, the lightest bodyshell in the segment, extensive safety features, a new agile and comfortable suspension as well as GPS-sensitive air conditioning underscore the inner values of the new C-Class. Overall, its innovations and refined equipment and appointments feel like an upgrade to a higher class.
The interior design of the future C-Class comes across as clear, sensual and with a host of new unusual styling features. At the same time it exudes sportiness – but with sensual shapes and high-grade materials, thus epitomising contemporary luxury. It also meets the kind of high design expectations that now tend to be synonymous with technology such as high-end smartphones.
The most prominent new styling features include a completely reinterpreted centre console, whose progressive lines create an inviting, open sense of space, as well as a free-standing central display. High-grade materials, as well as an enthralling interplay of organic surfaces and precisely sculpted lines underscore these new aesthetics and its stylish character.
The innovative touchpad developed by Mercedes-Benz in the new C-Class also marks an important evolutionary step. As on a smartphone, all the head-unit functions can easily be operated using finger gestures. The user also receives clear, haptic feedback when operating the touchpad control surface.
Additional to the information in the central display a head-up display is also new in the C-Class. Like in a jet fighter it projects important information as a virtual image directly into the driver's field of vision. It appears to float over the bonnet, around two metres in front of the driver, thus ensuring the driver is distracted less from the road ahead. The system provides information on speed, speed limits, navigation instructions and messages from DISTRONIC PLUS. It features a high-resolution virtual image which the driver can adjust to their preferred settings.
Intelligent lightweight construction
Less weight, excellent rigidity for superb driving handling coupled with optimum noise and vibration characteristics as well as high crash safety – those are the outstanding characteristics of the new C-Class with its aluminium hybrid body, which makes it the "lightweight construction trailblazer" in its segment. Thanks to intelligent and innovative lightweight construction, the body and bodyshell are around 70 kg lighter than conventional production using steel. The entire vehicle is around 100 kilograms lighter compared with the predecessor. This weight saving significantly reduces fuel consumption to set the new standard in this segment.
Mercedes-Benz has pulled off this technological leap primarily through an entirely new design and the extensive usage of aluminium, hot-formed steel parts and ultra-high-strength steels – an unusual combination in volume-production vehicles. The engineers have redesigned every detail and not simply replaced steel with aluminium, but implemented a concept that is ready for series production by using the right material in the right place – the essence of intelligent lightweight construction.
At the same time the body and bodyshell have been designed to deliver exemplary crash safety. The Saloon not only meets all current national safety ratings, but also the more stringent Mercedes-Benz requirements according to “Best Real Life Safety”. A high-strength safety passenger compartment made predominantly out of high- and ultra-high-strength sheet steel and specifically developed deformation zones with optimised force dissipation paths in the front end and rear made out of an aluminium hybrid structure and an exterior skin that is made virtually entirely of aluminium allow these requirements to be met.
Suspension – agile and yet comfortable
The new C-Class comes across as light-footed and agile, delivering a high level of driving pleasure on winding roads coupled with superb ride comfort in its segment. A newly designed 4-link front axle, which provides excellent axle kinematics, makes a major contribution in this respect.
The new C-Class Saloon is fitted as standard with a steel suspension. Alternatively, it is the first vehicle in this segment that can be fitted with an air suspension (AIRMATIC) on the front and rear axles. Thanks to electronically controlled, continuous variable damping, it offers outstanding road roar and tyre vibration characteristics and the choice of different damper characteristics.
New safety features and assistance systems
The sensor for the new front passenger airbag in the future C-Class can detect every child seat installed. Then the airbag is automatically deactivated. After removing the child seat the airbag is activated again.
The new C-Class also incorporates many of the new assistance systems or existing assistance systems with a range of enhanced functions, which celebrated their world premiere in the S-Class only a few months ago: Mercedes-Benz Intelligent Drive.
The new C-Class is the only vehicle in the segment to offer an air condition system including automatic air recirculation with tunnel detection using satellite navigation. The AIR‑BALANCE package with active fragrancing and ionisation, which celebrated its world premiere in the S-Class, also adds to the feel-good atmosphere.