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New Mercedes-Benz C-Class to start from $60,900

Class above: The C-Class sedan will arrive in Mercedes-Benz showrooms in August, but the Estate will launch in November.

Slight price increase and big spec boost for Mercedes-Benz's fourth-gen C-Class


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14 Jul 2014

MERCEDES-BENZ’S all-important fourth-generation C-Class range will kick off from $60,900 plus on-road costs when it arrives in Australian showrooms in August, with higher levels of equipment – particularly safety features – for a slight premium over the outgoing model.

Announcing the launch line-up at its headquarters in Melbourne today, Mercedes-Benz Australia/Pacific confirmed the range will consist of four-cylinder petrol, diesel and diesel-electric hybrid drivetrains for the time being, although a V6-powered C400 is believed to be coming next year along with the brutal twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 C63 AMG.

Mercedes-Benz Aust/Pac CEO Horst von Sanden told GoAuto the company would look at adding more variants down the track, but that it would not expand the line-up if it meant confusing buyers.

“We need to be mindful,” he said. “We are a smaller market worldwide and we need to manage our complexity in the best possible way, not only for our own efficiency but also for the clarity of customers.

“If you are under a critical volume in one specific car line then it is not worth making the effort and it’s not worth confusing the customers. For us it’s all about managing complexity to a sensible level so that we understand, our sales force understands, and most importantly our customers understand.”

Mr von Sanden said the company was not concerned with maintaining its lead in the sales race against its main rival, the BMW 3 Series, and added that stock levels have been lower this year due to the outgoing C-Class being in run-out mode.

“Our strategy is not driven by the competition,” he said. “Of course, if our strategy leads to market leadership, even better. In a run-out year you can imagine we don’t have a lot of flexibility. We have basically run out our current model successfully, which shows even in run-out phase we almost struggled to get enough cars in certain model lines.”

Mercedes has increased the price of sedan models in the new W205 C-Class line-up by $1000 apiece compared to the outgoing W204 model, while the Estate (wagon) variants, which are due in November, are up by $1500.

The modest price increase is more than made up for by higher levels of standard specification, with the company saying that extra safety and comfort features can add up to $10,000 compared to the previous model, depending on the variant.

At the entry level is the C200, powered by 135kW/300Nm 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine that offers 0-100km/h acceleration of 7.3 seconds and combined-cycle fuel consumption of 6.0L/100km, the latter an improvement of 0.8L compared to the outgoing C200 petrol.

The C200 CDI BlueTec is next in line, starting from $62,400 and carrying the same specification level as the petrol-powered variant.

The C200 BlueTec uses a 100kW/300Nm 1.6-litre turbo-diesel, with a 0-100km/h time of 9.4 seconds and claimed fuel economy of less than 4.0L/100km, which again improves on the consumption of the previous model by about 1.4L.

Shifting up the range, the C250 starts at $68,900 and is powered by a 155kW/350Nm turbo-petrol engine that can push the car from a standing start to 100km/h in 6.6 seconds, while sipping 6.0L/100km of fuel – a 0.8L improvement.

The oil-burning C250 BlueTec features a 2.2-litre turbo-diesel pumping out 150kW/500Nm and offering fuel economy of 4.5L/100km (0.6L lower than outgoing model) and a 0-100km/h sprint time of 6.6 seconds.

The sedan range is headlined by the C300 BlueTec Hybrid, which is priced from $74,900, which as GoAuto predicted last month, keeps it just below the luxury car tax threshold of $75,375 for fuel-efficient vehicles.

The hybrid hero – which arrives in December, four months after the rest of the sedan range – sips just 3.8L/100km thanks to its diesel-electric hybrid drivetrain that produces 150kW/500Nm, and races to 100km/h in 6.4 seconds.

Mercedes-Benz has chosen not to introduce a wagon version of the hybrid for this market, but the C200 and C200 BlueTec, as well as the C250 and C250 BlueTec are all offered in Estate guise for an extra $2500 above the equivalent sedan.

The German brand has included the Avantgarde package as standard on base C200 and C200 BlueTec guises, which in the outgoing model added $8000 to the price.

Safety-wise the C-Class is fitted with nine airbags, a reversing camera, blind-spot assist, autonomous emergency braking and a fatigue detection system.

Also standard at the entry level variants is the 7G-tronic seven-speed automatic transmission, 18-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights and daytime running lights, electric seats, satellite navigation, DAB+ digital radio, ambient lighting, illuminated door sills, Artico upholstery, electric park brake, active park assist, Agility Select with five different driving modes and Mercedes’ Collision Prevention Assist Plus system.

The C250 variants and the C300 BlueTec Hybrid add 19-inch alloy wheels, the full Driver Assistance Package Plus from the S-Class that includes lane-keep assist and the Pre-Safe Plus system, leather upholstery and keyless start with hands-free access.

A number of packages are available as options, including the Comand package with full sat-nav and the Burmeister sound system for $2990, a Vision package for $4990 and the AMG line which adds AMG styling and larger 19-inch alloys as well as other AMG flourishes for $4490 with the C200 and $3490 with the C250 and C300.

Built on the new MRA (Mercedes rear-drive architecture) platform, the W205 sedan is 95mm longer (4686mm), 4mm wider (1810mm), 5mm lower (1442mm) and has an 80mm longer wheelbase (2840mm) than its predecessor. Cargo capacity has also increased by five litres to 488 litres.

The car-maker says that 48 per cent of the body is made from lightweight aluminium, which has shaved 40kg off the weight of the outgoing model2014 Mercedes-Benz C-Class pricing*
C200 (a)$60,900
C200 Bluetec (a)$62,400
C250 (a)$68,900
C250 Bluetec (a)$70,400
C300 Bluetec Hybrid (a)$74,900

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