The new C-Class Estate: Unrivalled spaciousness, plus exemplary safety, optimum comfort and tangible agility

Oct 24, 2007
  • Perfect synthesis of agility and comfort plus spaciousness and versatility
  • Innovations borrowed from the luxury class
  • Situation-responsive AGILITY CONTROL shock absorbers
  • Fuel consumption reduced by up to twelve per cent
  • Six-speed transmission with AGILITY CONTROL gearshifting
Just a few months following the market debut of the Saloon, Mercedes-Benz is now unveiling the Estate version of the new C-Class. The estate takes the trademark strengths of the Saloon, such as safety, agility and comfort, and combines them with a significant increase in spaciousness and versatility. Quite apart from being able to hold a maximum of 1500 litres, giving it a larger load capacity than any other premium-class estate in this market segment, the new C‑Class Estate also offers a host of handy features for easy loading and safe transportation - a tailgate which opens and closes automatically at the push of a button, for example. Compared to the outgoing model, the new Mercedes estate burns as much as twelve per cent less fuel. With an official NEDC consumption of 6.0 litres/100 km, the new C 200 CDI can make a single tank of fuel (66 litres) last for over 1000 kilometres. Just like the saloon, the estate version of the new C‑Class has also been awarded an Environmental Certificate, which attests to the environmentally oriented development process as conforming with the international ISO standard. In terms of safety, the new estate blazes a trail with innovations of the likes of PRE-SAFE® and the Intelligent Light System, and distinguishes itself as the safest car in this vehicle class. Seven airbags, belt tensioners and belt force limiters, as well as crash-responsive NECK-PRO head restraints all make up part of the standard specification.
The new estate adopts the C-Class Saloon's customer-focused concept for the design and equipment lines. There is a choice of three models - CLASSIC, ELEGANCE and AVANTGARDE - which highlight the vehicle's comfort or agility to differing degrees. The AVANTGARDE line features a large Mercedes star positioned in the centre of the radiator grille that emphasises its sporty, agile nature. This traditional distinctive mark of sporty models from Mercedes is now being employed in an estate model for the first time by the Stuttgart-based automotive brand. In the ELEGANCE model, a three-dimensional, louvred radiator grille with a high-gloss paint finish accentuates other typical brand attributes such as comfort and luxury. The CLASSIC model, meanwhile, puts the accent firmly on a more restrained and traditional style.
New benchmark figure: maximum load capacity of 1500 litres
During the concept phase for the new estate, the designers and engineers at Mercedes took the expectations of the brand's customers as their yardstick. Consequently, spaciousness, versatility and functionality were given top priority. Compared to its predecessor, the rear of the new estate is slanted far more steeply, a crucial factor for enlarging the vehicle's load volume. This now varies between 485 and 1500 litres (VDA measuring method), depending on the position of the 1/3 : 2/3 split-folding rear seat -- more than any of the model's rivals in this class of premium estate car are able to offer. Measured against the outgoing C‑Class Estate, load capacity has been increased by as much as 146 litres.
This makes the estate a thoroughly practical vehicle in every respect. It is able to accommodate, for example, four golf bags including trolleys, nine large packing cases or a total of 44 drinks crates each containing six 1-litre juice bottles. The largest possible cuboid that fits into the load compartment now has a volume of 827 litres - that is an increase of 66 litres compared to the previous model and between 50 and 100 litres more than other premium estate models in this class are able to handle. The maximum utilisable interior length is a whole 2.82 metres, as measured between the tailgate and the front passenger footwell - 17 centimetres more than previously.
Convenient loading: EASY-PACK tailgate and load-securing kit
Thanks to a host of practical details, the new Mercedes Estate can be loaded more easily, more conveniently and more safely. For instance, two bag hooks and four rings for anchoring loads are included in the load compartment as standard. Stowage compartments with net covers and a collapsible shopping crate can likewise be found in all models, as can the combined luggage cover and retaining net. The new EASY-PACK tailgate opens and closes as the push of a button, representing a first in this segment. Finally, the optional EASY-PACK load-securing kit presents drivers with even more possibilities both for partitioning the load compartment - which measures around 1.80 metres long and up to 1.20 metres wide - and for securing the load being carried.
The new C-Class Estate also makes a perfectly good towing vehicle and, indeed, offers a class-beating towing capacity of as much as 1800 kilograms. The self-levelling suspension that is optionally available keeps the vehicle at a constant ride height regardless of the load it is carrying.
Accredited environmental protection: a twelve per cent cut in fuel consumption
Environmental considerations played a key role in the development of the
Mercedes-Benz C-Class from the very start. This is corroborated by the Environmental Certificate that was awarded by the TÜV Technical Inspection Authority in Germany. Mercedes-Benz is the only automotive brand in the world to have obtained a certificate under the terms of ISO standard 14062 for environmentally acceptable product development.
With brand new or redeveloped engines under the bonnet offering greater power and torque, the C-Class Estate consumes up to twelve per cent less fuel than previously. The four-cylinder power units were the focus of the development work: in the case of the C 180 KOMPRESSOR and C 200 KOMPRESSOR petrol models Mercedes-Benz modified the engine management and fitted a more dynamic supercharger and improved pistons to boost output by 10 kW/13 hp and 15 kW/20 hp respectively. At the same time, the fuel consumption figures for the two models could be cut by as much as 10.3 per cent to 7.7 and 7.8 litres/ 100 kilometres.
Mercedes-Benz also gave the four-cylinder diesel engines a thorough overhaul too, making improvements not only to the injection system, the turbocharger and the intercooler but to more than 90 other components too. The upshot is engines delivering more power and higher torque, combined with fuel consumption that is around twelve per cent lower. The new C 220 CDI now has an output of 125 kW/ 170 hp (previously: 110 kW/150 hp) and musters up 400 Newtonmetres of peak torque (previously: 340 Newtonmetres) from 2000 rpm. Fuel consumption on the NEDC driving cycle comes in at 6.1 litres for every 100 kilometres (previously: 6.9 l/100 km).
In the new C 200 CDI, power has been upped by eleven per cent (100 kW/136 hp instead of 90 kW/122 hp before) and fuel consumption is 6.0 litres/100 kilometres (previously 6.8 l/100 km).
As for the six-cylinder engine range, there is a choice of three petrol units developing 150 kW/204 hp, 170 kW/231 hp and 200 kW/272 hp, as well as the new C 320 CDI with an output of 165 kW/224 hp. With the exception of the C 350, all engine variants are coupled to a six-speed manual transmission as standard. The C 350 is partnered by the 7G-TRONIC seven-speed automatic transmission.
Sporty agility: shock absorbers that change with the driving situation
The unique blend of agility and comfort that forms one of the exceptional strengths of the new C-Class is basically down to the standard-fit AGILITY CONTROL package. This features shock absorbers which automatically adapt to the current driving situation for a noticeable improvement in ride comfort when driving normally. As soon as a more dynamic driving style is adopted, on the other hand, the maximum damping forces are set to stabilise the estate effectively.
A steering system that is six per cent more direct and a short-throw six-speed manual transmission also form part of the AGILITY CONTROL package.
The dynamic handling package that is available as an option bestows the new C‑Class Estate with a degree of agility worthy of out-and-out sports cars. The driver is able to choose from two drive modes which determine the fundamental suspension characteristic: Comfort and Sport. Within these modes, the shock absorbers at each wheel are regulated by means of an infinitely variable electronic control. What's more, the body is lowered by 15 millimetres and the suspension equipped with shorter springs and thicker torsion bars. The dynamic handling package also encompasses the new speed-sensitive power steering with a more direct ratio and variable centring.
The body index devised by engineers at Mercedes clearly illustrates just how agilely the new C-Class Estate performs out on the road. This index is calculated from the readings for various driving manoeuvres, thereby forming a new composite formula for a vehicle's dynamic handling abilities. The larger the body index, the better the suspension is linked to the body and the firmer the suspension's tuning. The standard AGILITY CONTROL suspension gives the C‑Class a body index of 1.91 to 2.01 hertz, while the new model attains sports‑car‑like values of up to 2.46 hertz with the dynamic handling package fitted.
Kitting out the new estate with the AMG sports package adds a sports suspension with shorter springs and firmer shock absorbers to the specification, along with 17-inch light-alloy wheels. The body is also dropped by 15 millimetres.
Hallmark Mercedes quality: the safest car in its class
The C-Class Estate has come through an exhaustive programme of testing, during which it demonstrated its typical Mercedes-like levels of safety in over 100 crash tests in all. The occupant protection concept is underpinned by an intelligently designed bodyshell, 70 percent of which consists of high-strength and ultra-high-strength grades of steel. The front-end structure comprises four impact levels which act independently of one another and enable forces to be distributed over a wide area while bypassing the passenger cell. The occupants are protected by a total of seven airbags as standard. The driver, front passenger and the passengers on the outer rear seats also benefit from belt tensioners and belt force limiters. The NECK-PRO head restraints in the front have a crash-responsive design, meaning that they move to cushion the heads of the driver and front passenger at an early stage in a rear-end collision to guard against the risk of whiplash.
The integrated child seats, which fold out of the rear bench seat have undergone further development and are now also available with a wraparound head restraint.
Standard features such as the flashing brake lights, Brake Assist and Electronic Stability Program make vital contributions to accident prevention. The ESP® system now incorporates additional functions: not only does it monitor the tyre pressure, it also helps to enhance safety when towing a trailer with an automatic trailer stabilisation function.
The anticipatory occupant protection system PRE-SAFE® gives the new estate the edge over other models in this segment. This optional system makes use of the time before an imminent accident to prepare the vehicle and its occupants for a collision. The result is a considerable reduction in the loads exerted on the passengers upon impact. The Intelligent Light System is another technical innovation borrowed from the luxury models in the Mercedes range and is the only system of its kind in this market segment at the current time. The system's five different lighting functions are each suited to various typical driving and weather conditions.
Excellent comfort on long journeys: newly developed seats and air conditioning system
Inside, the attractively styled dashboard, the high-class materials and appealing colour schemes create a homely atmosphere. For the first time, the colour concept has been extended to the load compartment too. On CLASSIC and ELEGANCE models, the customer's selected appointments colour is used for both the carpeting and the side trim. On the AVANTGARDE line, the rear compartment is carpeted in black too. Newly developed seats, which can be specified with a multicontour function as an option, as well as a powerful air conditioning system add to the estate's excellent comfort on long journeys.
The new Estate from Mercedes-Benz is the first model in this class to offer the option of individually adjustable three-zone climate control. And the expansive panoramic sliding sunroof can be found on the list of optional extras for an estate car for the first time too.
The colour display in the centre of the dashboard is linked up to the controller on the tunnel console. This is where the driver can operate the audio and navigation systems or the telephone. A clear menu control structure makes it simple to access all of these functions and more besides. Alternatively, there are the direct selection keys in the centre console: the car radio, CD/ DVD player, navigation system or telephone can be switched on at the push of a button. Subsequent operating steps are performed using the controller in unison with the colour display in the dashboard.
State-of-the-art technology: voice-controlled infotainment devices
Mercedes-Benz developed three new infotainment units for the C-Class: Audio 20, Audio 50 APS and COMAND APS. They all feature a keypad for entering telephone numbers and radio frequencies, as well as a Bluetooth interface which allows mobile phones to be connected wirelessly to the hands-free system. The Audio 50 APS system also comprises pan-European DVD navigation using arrow symbols for route guidance. With the COMAND APS multimedia system, the navigation data is stored on a hard disk. A high-resolution map which can be viewed from different perspectives appears on the tilting colour display. The COMAND APS also comprises a DVD player, along with a music server for storing up to 1000 tracks.
The LINGUATRONIC voice control system is automatically included on C-Class Estate models equipped with the Audio 50 APS plus the six-disc DVD changer or with the COMAND APS system. For the first time, the new improved system is now able to recognise whole-word commands when entering a destination, selecting a radio station or calling up a name from the telephone directory. The driver no longer needs to spell out the names of countries, towns or roads, for example, but is able to speak them as whole words instead.
Following its public premiere at the International Motor Show in Frankfurt/Main, motorists have been able to place their orders for the new C-Class Estate with Mercedes-Benz sales and service outlets and dealerships since September 2007.
Appointments and technical highlights of the new C-Class Estate*
Cornering light function: This function of the bi-xenon headlamps and Intelligent Light System provides heightened safety at junctions and when driving slowly in tight bends.
Optional in conjunction with bi-xenon headlamps or Intelligent Light System
ADAPTIVE BRAKE: This newly developed braking system includes assistance functions for even more safety and comfort.
Adaptive brake lights: Flashing brake lights warn vehicles behind in an emergency braking situation.
Adaptive front airbags: The front airbags deploy in two stages, depending on accident severity.
AGILITY CONTROL package: A selective damping system adapts the shock absorber responses to the driving situation. The AGILITY CONTROL package also includes more direct steering and a short-throw gearshift.
Active light system: The Intelligent Light System's bi-xenon headlamps follow the driver's steering movements.
Optional in conjunction with Intelligent Light System
Motorway mode: From 90 km/h the entire width of the carriageway is illuminated, improving the driver’s range of vision by around 50 metres.
Optional in conjunction with Intelligent Light System
Bi-xenon headlamps: Gas-discharge lamps for low and high beam improve safety at night.
Bluetooth interface: The mobile phone is wirelessly linked to the hands-free system.
Standard in conjunction with Audio 20, Audio 50 APS or COMAND APS
COMAND APS: The navigation system's data is stored on a hard disk for even faster route calculation and improved graphical depiction of the route on the display. A music server for up to 1000 tracks is also integrated.
EASY-PACK load-securing kit: Four freely adjustable load-securing rings, a telescopic bar and a retractable belt can be attached to two aluminium rails in the load-compartment floor.
EASY-PACK tailgate: An electromechanical drive opens and closes the tailgate automatically.
Enhanced foglamps: This function of the Intelligent Light System pivots the offside headlamp outwards to illuminate the road verge more effectively.
Optional, standard in conjunction with Intelligent Light System
ESP®: This safety system is able to reduce the risk of skidding in bends, and warns of pressure loss in the tyres.
Dynamic handling package: Shock absorber and transmission settings can be modified at the touch of a button - either for extra comfort or sporty agility. The steering is more direct, and in Sport mode the accelerator characteristics are adapted. If an automatic transmission is specified, the shift characteristics are modified too.
Headlamp Assist: A sensor on the windscreen automatically switches the headlamps on when darkness falls.
Trailer stabilisation: This supplementary ESP® function detects when the trailer is weaving dangerously and stabilises the car/trailer combination by means of brake pulses at the estate's front wheels.
Standard for vehicles equipped with a trailer tow hitch
Belt force limiters: This technology reduces the force exerted by the belt strap on the seat occupant during a crash.
Standard for the front and outer rear seats
Belt tensioners: Any slack in the seat belt strap is instantly taken up during a crash to reduce the forward movement of the occupants caused by the impact.
Standard for the front and outer rear seats
Integrated child seats: the child seats fold out of the rear bench seat at the push of a button. Wraparound head restraints may also be attached.
Intelligent Light System: This innovative headlamp technology provides five lighting functions which are activated depending on the driving and weather conditions (also see Cornering light function, Country mode, Motorway mode, Active light system and Enhanced foglamps).
KEYLESS-GO: The doors and boot lid can be opened without a key. The engine is started at the touch of a button.
Child seat recognition: A transponder system automatically recognises whether a rear-facing child seat is installed, and deactivates the front passenger airbag if this is the case.
Kneebag: In the event of a crash, an additional airbag reduces the forward movement of the driver caused by the impact.
THERMATIC automatic climate control: This improved system controls two temperature zones and offers numerous adjustments for individual passenger comfort.
THERMOTRONIC luxury automatic climate control: This system provides three-zone climate control, and includes further functions such as diffused, draught-free ventilation, an air quality sensor and residual engine heat utilisation.
Luxury multifunction steering wheel: The radio, telephone, navigation system, display and other devices can be operated from the steering wheel.
Standard on the ELEGANCE and AVANTGARDE lines
Country mode: This function of the Intelligent Light System replaces the previous low-beam headlamps and provides broader and brighter illumination of the opposite road verge.
Optional in conjunction with Intelligent Light System
LINGUATRONIC: The voice control system operates the radio, CD/DVD player, CD/DVD changer, navigation system and telephone - now by whole-word commands, including navigation destinations or telephone directory entries.
Optional; standard in conjunction with Audio 50 APS including six-disc DVD changer and with COMAND APS
Memory function: Three memory settings are stored for both the driver's and the front passenger seat. The settings for the steering wheel and exterior mirrors are also stored.
Optional in conjunction with electrically adjustable front seats
NECK-PRO head restraints: Crash-responsive head restraints support the heads of the driver and front passenger at an early stage during a rear-end collision, reducing the risk of a whiplash injury.
Self-levelling suspension: The system keeps the vehicle's ride height constant regardless of the load it is carrying. All components are integrated directly into the rear shock absorbers.
Panoramic sliding sunroof: A large glass surface extending from the front windscreen to the load compartment. The front section slides to the rear at the touch of a button.
PARKTRONIC: Ultrasonic sensors assist the driver when parking.
PRE-SAFE®: Anticipatory safety measures are taken to protect the occupants before an impending collision.
Sidebags: These airbags reduce the risk of injury in a collision from the side.
Standard for driver and front passenger; optional for the rear
7G-TRONIC seven-speed automatic transmission: The world's only automatic car transmission with seven ratios is optionally available with the V6 engines.
Optional in conjunction with V6 engine; standard in C 350
Roller sunblind: Both doors in the rear can be fitted with roller sunblinds for the windows.
Sound system: A multi-channel system with innovative digital technology allows all passengers to enjoy surround sound. A unique Dolby 5.1 sound can be experienced in combination with the DVD player.
Windowbags: This large airbag extends from the A to the C‑pillar like a curtain in a crash from the side.
*selection; **in Europe
Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate, C 200 CDI, CLASSIC
Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate, C 200 CDI, CLASSIC
Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate, C 320 CDI, ELEGANCE
Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate, C 320 CDI, ELEGANCE
Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate, C 320 CDI, ELEGANCE
Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate, C 350, AVANTGARDE
Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate, C 350, AVANTGARDE
Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate, C 350, AVANTGARDE