Even the standard CLASSIC model comes with new fine-wood trim as standard, thus further improving the appearance of the centre dome and centre console. Meanwhile there is a choice of trim for the AVANTGARDE line: aluminium (standard) or bird's-eye maple (optional). Standard equipment for this model variant includes seat covers made from a combination of fabric and a new material called ARTICO.
The C-Class Sports Coupé underlines its youthful and dynamic credentials with a new three-spoke steering wheel featuring silver control buttons, aluminium appliqués in the centre console and sports seats.
Chassis: sports-tuned axles, steering and transmission
To improve the already outstanding driving dynamics, the C-Class chassis, steering and manual transmission have all been modified. The raft of measures implemented – collectively referred to as DIRECT CONTROL – includes newly developed bearings on the front and rear axles, which allow even more agile cornering without impairing comfort, as well as a more direct steering ratio and a reinforced anti-roll bar at the rear. The standard-fitted six-speed manual transmission is easy to use and ensures extremely precise gear changes.
For the C 320 and models with sports package/AMG sports package as well as EVOLUTION/EVOLUTION AMG (Sports Coupé), Mercedes Benz installs a sports-tuned transmission with significantly shorter shift travel.
Engines: new, powerful petrol model and a boost in output for the C 220 CDI
Mercedes Benz is extending the engine line-up for the Saloon and Estate models by introducing the supercharged powerplant developing 192 hp, which was previously only available for the Sports Coupé. With a peak torque of 260 Nm, the four-cylinder engine propels the C 230 KOMPRESSOR from 0 to 62.5 mph in 8.1 seconds (Estate 8.7 seconds) and enables a top speed of 149 mph (Estate 146 mph). Thanks to the TWINPULSE system, which combines various technologies such as a compressor, balancer shafts, intercooler, variable valve timing and four valves per cylinder, the engine consumes just 31.7 mpg (NEDC combined consumption, Estate 30.4 mpg).
The power output of the tried-and-trusted four-cylinder diesel engine at the heart of C 220 CDI has been boosted to 150 hp (from 143 hp). This state-of-the-art powerplant features second-generation common-rail direct injection and is equipped with balancer shafts to ensure exemplary refinement. Its fuel consumption is an impressive 46.3 mpg (NEDC combined consumption, Estate 42.8 mpg).
In addition, a highly sophisticated particulate filter system requiring no additive helps to make sure that the C 200 CDI and C 220 CDI diesel models comply with the EU-4 emission standard which is due to come into force in 2005.