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New Mercedes-Benz C200 Review

We drive the 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class in India, the new benchmark in the entry level luxury sedan segment
New 2015 Mercedes-Benz C200 review in India
Merecedes-Benz India is ready with the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class and is hoping to match up to what the magnanimous Mercedes-Benz S-Class did in its segment — raise the benchmark. This is perhaps the most important launches for the German company in India this year, as the new entry level luxury sedan will not just bring in bigger volumes but also has the potential to outwit competition. 
Just to give you an idea, when we drove the car in Spain during its international media drive earlier this year, the company was thinking of launching the new ‘C’ in 2015. But just to put pressure on competition and add the element of surprise, Mercedes-Benz has preponed its launch in India.
New 2015 Mercedes-Benz C200 India design

Not surprisingly, when it comes to exterior styling, the 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class seeks inspiration from the new S-Class. It has similar silhouettes as an ‘S’ with a long bonnet, coupe-like roofline and stub tail, but is only smaller in terms of proportion — truly justifying the ‘baby S-Class’ tag.
New 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class gets a distinct Avantgrade face

The Indian version comes with a more distinct Avantgarde face with a bolder two-slat grille which houses a large TriStar Mercedes emblem. The front bumper flaunts an intricate design, including large flared-wing-like air dams and aero lip. But the jewel on the crown is the complex layout of the full LED, adaptive headlights with delicately set Daytime Running Lights.
New 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class rear deisgn
The muscular side profile shows off prominent light reflecting character lines, intense wheel arches and a thin chrome strip that runs till the rear bumper. The details on the LED taillights are equality impressive. I particularly like the integrated spoiler and chrome diffusers at the back which not just look striking, but also help bring down the new C-Class’ drag coefficient value to an impressive 0.24. The only disappointing bit is the 17-inch 5-twin-spoke alloy wheels which resemble the ones from the outgoing model. The 2015 Mercedes-Benz does manage to deliver an upscale and desirable design as expected from a car of its class.

New 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class plush interiors resembles the S-Class

To sum up the interiors of the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class in one word would be — stunning. It’s a beautifully crafted cabin, and the attention to details is spectacular. Every bit of material used has a rich and premium feel to it, making the cabin appear as if it truly belongs to a much higher segment. Like the car’s underpinnings there’s exuberant use of aluminium in the interiors as well. From the two-tone dashboard which is split with an aluminium-finish metal strip, to the deliciously crafted speakers on the door panels which make the cabin quite exquisite.
Old-school circular AC vents and gloss wood inlays
The S-Classs inspiration continues with the brush metal circular AC vents, cascading centre console design with gloss wood inlays, and not to forget the classic analogue clock. Every single button has a solid feel to it — be it the sleek aircon controls, the rotary vent dials or the seat adjusters on the door panel.
Comfortable rear seats of the new 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class
At the back, there’s plenty of room and the seats are very comfortable. But due to the transmission tunnel, the middle seat does get compromised. There’s personal air-conditioning along with a pair of speaker for rear seat passengers too. The headroom isn’t best in class, but the panoramic sunroof does help in making the cabin airy.
New 8.4-inch TFT screen of the new 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class
The well appointed interiors of the 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class also gets plenty of gizmos. These include a push button start, an all-new steering wheel equipped with a host of buttons, a large tablet like coloured TFT screen and a neatly sculpted touchpad on the centre console to navigate through the recently updated Comand Online system which now comes with 3D maps.
New 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class comes with electrically adjustable front seats
Both the front seats are electrically adjustable, including the under-thigh support, and come with memory function too. To set the mood right, the new C-Class sports ambient lighting and a terrific 13 speaker Burmester surround sound music system.
There’s automatic climate control and the new C-Class now also gets the much missed steering mounted gear shift paddles. Having a rear camera with Park Assist relaying live feeds on the 8.4-inch screen makes parking and reversing this premium car a lot less stressful. It’s a good thing that the new C-Class has a space saver as backup, but since the spare wheel is strapped on the floor of the luggage compartment, it eats up valuable space of the 480-litres of storage space.
Boot space of the new 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class compromised by space saver spare wheel
And there’s more: Loads of safety features including seven airbags, ESP with curve dynamic assist, ABS, ARS (traction control) and brake assist. Besides these, you get a couple of other helpful features including Hill Start Assist, fuel saving Start/Stop function and electric parking brake.

Performance test of the New 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class
Engine and Performance: 
Initially, the 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class will be available in the C200 petrol engine option in India. This model comes powered with a 1991cc in-line four motor curing out 183.5PS at 5,500rpm of power and a healthy 300Nm of torque produced between 1,200-1,300rpm. Like most Mercedes engines, the C200 is impressively smooth and offers silky flow of power.
Though it doesn’t deliver tyre shredding performance, it does provide strong surge and feels more alive than its predecessor. The only chink on the C’s armour is the seven-speed 7GTRONIC PLUS transmission which is not as intuitive as some of the other gearboxes of its class. It does come with steering mounted gear shifter paddles which makes it more interesting to drive.
Touch-pad and Agility Controls of the new 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class
You can fine tune the car’s behaviour further using the drive modes like Eco, Comfort, Sport and Sport Plus which can be engaged by the Agility Select button on the centre console. Sport and Sport Plus, as suggested by their names sharpens the C-Class’ sense to make it more dynamic. Apart from the gear shifts, these modes also alter the car’s engine and steering dynamics, and disengage the Start/Stop system. Despite the sluggish gearbox, the new Mercedes-Benz is no slouch and quite engaging to drive. And Mercedes’ claims of a zero to 100kmph in just 7.3 seconds feel pretty close to accurate.
new 8.4-inch TFT screen of the new 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class

While the Eco mode has efficiency as its focus, making the 2015 C-Class a little subdued. In fact, this mode also alters the air-conditioning system to squeeze out the best fuel efficiency. But it’s the Comfort mode with relaxed power delivery and linear gearshifts, which seems best suited for the new C-Class and feels particularly apt for rear seat passengers’ comfort.
New 2015 Mercedes-Benz C200 ride quality and handling is tuned for comfort
Ride and Handling: 
This entry level luxury sedan aims at offering superior passenger comfort, more than the driver’s, and does this fairly well. The suspension cannot be altered through the Drive Select modes, but can tackle even poor city road surfaces with aplomb. It’s just during enthusiastic driving that misses firming up the suspension a bit. Sharp turns do let in fair bit of bodyroll and thankfully there’s enough electronics to keep the drive in control.
Low profile tyres of the 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class
The low profile 225/50 R17 lets in severe harsh bumps through the cabin, but for most parts the car maintains its poise. Interestingly, the ground clearance has improved and the new Mercedes-Benz C200 can be now driven around town without having to worry about it scraping its underbelly. Also impressive is the turning radius of 11.22m which makes maneuvering the car a breeze.
New electric steering system of the 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class
Another important change is the all-new completely electric steering wheel which although lacks the feedback of the older hydraulic steering system, but does not feel artificially weight and is quite accurate. The new C-Class is not the most fun car to drive in its segment, but isn’t too far behind either.
New 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class price and fuel efficiency
Price and Fuel Efficiency: 
In its best behaviour, with the ECO mode on, Mercedes-Benz claims that the 2015 C200 will return about 14.7kmpl. But during some pedal-to-the-metal drive, the driver’s information reflected 9kmpl on an average.
The 2014 Mercedes-Benz is yet to be launched and is expected to be priced more than the current Mercedes-Benz C-Class which retails from Rs 33 lakh onwards. Loaded with features, plush interiors and the fact that the 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class will not be assembled in India like its predecessor (at least for now) we expected it to be closer to Rs 40 lakh.
New 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class front design
Conclusion: 4.5-rating
Despite it being more expensive than its competitors, the 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class has impressed us with its premium cabin, S-Class like exteriors, tonnes of features and great comfort — taking the segment benchmark to yet another level.

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