For a start, there is a new suspension system that provides comfort and agility.
For a start, there is a new suspension system that provides comfort and agility. Agility is the keyword as standard throughout the range is an AGILITY CONTROL system, which works through hydro mechanics rather than electronics. It makes the ride softer on straight roads, such as motorways, and firmer when cornering, resulting in a flatter ride through fast bends. The AGILITY CONTROL also of makes the steering more positive and direct and affects the short-travel, 6-speed manual gearbox. There is also an ADVANCED AGILITY package, available, which offers the choice between sport and comfort shifts for the gear change.
The ADAPTIVE BRAKE system is another new but unseen development. Borrowed from the S-Class, it encompasses Hill Start Assist (for people who learned to drive in the Fens), a priming function for the brakes, in an emergency and a disc-drying facility.
Now standard, in the C-Class but already proven in the larger, more expensive vehicles in the Mercedes Benz stable, is PRE-SAFE. Amongst its other functions, it is linked to ESP and Brake Assist and prepares both occupants and the car, if an imminent collision is detected, through heavy braking or under/oversteer.
There are seven airbags in all; two adaptive ones at the front, along with side airbags and a driver’s knee-bag and two, large, window airbags that extend between the A- and C-pillars.
The driver’s environment is one of classic confidence, although there are sporty hints in the silver bezels surrounding the white on black, instrument dials. The fascia now features a new centre console, which is equally subdued but classy and easy to use.
Above the climate controls and air-vents, is an integrated, colour display-screen, again, borrowed from the more luxurious cars. It is very easy to control various functions including the audio system and has an added benefit - it can be hidden away behind a cover but still continues to operate. As you would expect from Mercedes Benz, there are secondary audio controls on the multi-functional steering wheel and, thankfully, the driver isn’t overburdened with a forest of stalks, sprouting from the rake- and reach-adjustable steering column.
Mercedes Benz C-Class Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Mercedes Benz C-Class C220 CDI SE|
|Body Type||4-Door Saloon|
|Colour||Obsidian Black Metallic|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||8.5 Seconds|
|Top Speed||142 mph|
|Transmission||6-Speed Manual Gearbox|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||60.1 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||TBA|
|Warranty||3-Year / Unlimited Mileage Warranty|
|Price (when tested on the 30/09/07)||£24,107|