All-new 2022 Mercedes-Benz C-Class borrows from big brother S
The all-new Mercedes-Benz C-Class is almost a scaled-down S-Class, taking styling cues and a passenger environment from the biggest sedan in the Benz family.
What the C-Class won’t get are the larger engines from the S-Class, with all models in the line-up being powered by four-cylinder motors and supplemented with hybrid technology in the form of a 48-volt integrated starter-generator.
In Europe, the entry-level C180 features a 1.5-liter engine with 170 hp, with a C200 version offering 203 hp. For the U.S.A the 258-hp C300 is the most likely entry point. Diesels will be available, but not Stateside. A plug-in hybrid version with close to 325 hp is set follow, offering 62 miles of electric driving range without compromising space to fit batteries. AMG fans will have to wait a while before a 500-hp hybrid makes its debut.
The C-Class uses a double-wishbone front end, with a multi-link arrangement for the rear suspension, and adaptive damping all around. There’s rear-axle steering for increased stability at speed and improved low speed maneuverability. A comprehensive suite of driving aids comes in a Driving Assistance package that includes 360-degree multi-lane monitoring for the Active Steering function which will allow hands-off motoring at up to 80 mph.
From a design standpoint there are very clear links to the S-Class, especially the more angular front and headlamps. It’s a solid, upmarket look from most angles, but the rear end is a little ungainly. The trunk lid is short, yet the rear overhang is quite large, and the impression is of a car that doesn’t know if it’s a hatch or a sedan. The wagon, which sadly isn’t likely to make it to the U.S.A, might well be the best-looking version.
It’s inside where the influence of the S-Class is most impressive. The cabin is dominated by the central-mounted 11.9-inch MBUX screen and a second, 12.3-inch tablet-shaped display in front of the driver. The screens are well-integrated into the otherwise organic swoops of the cabin. The first images show a lot of gloss surfaces, which we can imagine showing up fingerprint smudges quite quickly, but overall it looks to be comfortable and cool. In fact, Mercedes describes the cabin as “an all-round future-proof comfort zone—a refuge that combines apparent opposites, such as sportiness and comfort with efficiency, emotion, and intelligence, thus defining modern luxury.” There’s adjustable ambient lighting, vents inspired by jet turbines and more room for passengers in the rear seats.
On the technology front the car employs biometric identification and so it can configure itself your personal settings as soon as it recognizes you, with video-augmented navigation, voice assistant and smart home integration also featuring.
Following the sedan’s arrival in dealership in early 2022 will be a lifted All Terrain version, plus coupe and cabriolet derivatives.