Suspension: comfort and agility
The key components of the new, dynamically configured suspension are a new four-link axle at the front and a multi-link axle at the rear mounted to a subframe. 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. Air suspension at the rear is standard for both the Saloon and Estate models of the plug-in hybrids.
Rear-axle steering: more agile and dynamic
The new C-Class is especially agile and stable with the optional rear-axle steering and the accompanying, more direct steering ratio at the front axle. The steering angle at the rear axle is 2.5 degrees. This reduces the turning circle by 43 centimetres to 10.64 metres.
The driver also needs fewer turns of the steering wheel for full lock. With rear-axle steering, and depending on the drive concept, this requires 2.1 instead of 2.35 turns (rear-wheel drive with comfort steering) or 2.3 turns (4MATIC versions with comfort steering).
At speeds below 60 km/h, the rear wheels steer in the opposite direction to the front wheels – and by up to 2.5° opposite to the front-axle angle during parking. Depending on the situation, this virtually shortens the wheelbase, and the vehicle is more manoeuvrable, light-footed and agile as a result. At speeds above 60 km/h, the rear wheels steer up to 2.5° in the same direction as the front wheels. This virtual increase in wheelbase has noticeable advantages in the form of improved handling stability and safety at high speeds, during fast lane-changes or sudden evasive manoeuvres.
Moreover, considerably less steering input is required during dynamic manoeuvres, e.g. when driving on country roads – and the vehicle responds to steering movements in a more sporty manner. This is supported by the integrated dynamic control function of the ESP®.