It’s been a long time coming since the all-new 2014 Mercedes-Benz C-Class was first revealed to the world in pictures, and now, Malaysia can finally get its hands on the W205 C-Class. But, before we get into the details, here are the prices (without insurance):
- 2014 Mercedes-Benz C 200 AVANTGARDE (CBU): RM285,888
- 2014 Mercedes-Benz C 250 EXCLUSIVE (CBU): RM314,888
CBU now, CKD later:
As you may have noticed from the above, the two variants of the all-new W205 C-Class here are imported units, as expected.Mercedes-Benz Malaysia tell us that preparations for local assembly of the car is well underway at its plant in Pekan, Pahang, and that official sale for the CKD units will only begin sometime next year.
When the Merc CKD variants do arrive, you can expect them to be a lot more affordable than the prices you see here, which aren’t all that bad themselves. Against its direct rival – the BMW 328i Luxury (CKD) which costs RM293,800 – the range-topping C 250 Executive (CBU) is just RM21k more, and is miles ahead in design, luxury, comfort and technology. The Bavarian alternative may still pack the harder punch for performance – but that’s a showdown we’ve yet to try.
What’s different between the C 200 and C 250?
Apart from the expected changes in power, very little differs from the Malaysian-spec C 200 to the C 250 C-Class. So, outside of this specific section, it would be fair to assume that both variants of the C-Class are identical (though there may be minor differences).
C 200: The base C-Class gets an AVANTGARDE line, which has a twin-chrome bar front grille with an integrated three-point star in the middle. Inside, more aluminium trim designs are utilised – another identifiable trait of the W205 C 200. Wheels are 17-inch five twin-spoke light alloy.
C 250: The more premium C 250 is dressed up with an EXCLUSIVE line, with its Mercedes star ornament sitting on the hood, a bold multi-bar radiator grille at the front, 17-inch multi-spoke light alloy wheels, and a sunroof.
The C 250’s standard front grille is of a bit of technology called AIRPANEL. It remains shut to maintain minimal aerodynamic resistance, but when cooling is needed, the shutters open to function as any radiator grille would.
Inside, the aluminium designs you saw on the C 200 are replaced with a very pretty assortment of wood grain all around. And we wouldn’t blame you for seeing the resemblance between the C 250’s interior and that of the current S-Class. It even makes the previous S-Class look shabby.
Performance and Economy:
The previous range of 1.8-litre engines we knew in the W204 C-Class have been ousted by two new powerplants off the M270 series (M274). You may recognise the new 2.0-litre direct-injection turbocharged pair from the current range offacelifted E-Class, sharing equal power outputs as well.
POWER: The base C-Class C 200 makes do with 184hp and 300Nm of torque, while the C 250 pushes some 211hp and 350Nms. Both cars come equipped with 7G-TRONIC PLUS seven-speed torque converter automatic transmissions, but you’ll note that their E, S, M modes have been displaced – more on this later, but don’t worry, you can still have your transmission is sports mode when the mood strikes.
ECONOMY: Big on fuel efficiency, the new engines in the C-Class are said to reduce consumption by up to 20% against their predecessors. 5.3-litres/100km is claimed for both tunes of the 2.0-litre pot (you may also want to thank the W205’s immense diet for this), with CO2 emissions also matched for 123g/km.
Exterior Styling & Dimensions:
Now that we’ve sorted out the differences, let’s take you through the standard inclusions of both C-Class variants – starting with what’s outside:
First up, just like the all-new S-Class, not a single light bulb is found throughout the car, inside and out – yes, it’s a strictly LED affair here.
Against the previous C-Class, the new W205 has grown in size, gaining a 95mm increase in length, and a 40mm increase in width. The wheelbase is 80mm longer, and interestingly, there’s a 15mm front overhang increase added to better pedestrian protection and reduce repair costs. Yet, through all this increase in size, the C-Class today manages to be 100kg lighter at the kerb than before.
The car itself is a lot more sculpted overall, dismissing the cut lines of the W204, which gains it a drag coefficient value of 0.24 that matches the super aerodynamic CLA 200 we have here, and beats out the F30 BMW 3 Series’ 0.26. The low aero drag is most noticeable at highway speeds, where we’ve experienced the CLA Class have nearly zero wind noises.
Interior Design & Tech:
The increase in overall size has given way to more interior spaciousness, and more room for you to appreciate the beautifully-crafted designs around you – and yes, we rarely use such descriptions, but it must be said that the C-Class’s refinement is of another level with sensual and smooth flowing lines throughout. Three themes are selectable for the car’s ambient LED lighting: solar (amber), polar (blue) and neutral (white).
INFOTAINMENT: The free-standing central display screen is a seven-inch one, and feature Mercedes-Benz’s latest Audio 20 CD interface: Bluetooth, USB (2), etc. is a given, while bonuses include internet capabilities and a host of new social and navigational apps.
The Garmin-sourced navigation can also identify upcoming tunnels and actively closes switches on the car’s air recirculation.
Both C-Class variants are also equipped with Mercedes-Benz’s Frontbass system, which uses the car’s body structure as a resonance chamber for the bass speakers – this is something you’ve just got to try to believe.
TOUCHPAD: Controlling the C-Class’s interface functions is done by utilising the car’s all-new touchpad system and control dial beneath it. The upper section which looks like a hand rest functions as such with your entire palm over it, but lifting your hand turns it into a functional touchpad which accepts letters, numbers and special characters – zoom, drag, rotate functions are also possible. There’s also haptic feedback for you to feel command acceptances.
AIR-BALANCE: As it is with the flagship S-Class, the local C-Class is also spec-ed with an AIR-BALANCE package – limited to the C 250 Exclusive. The active perfuming feature is also equipped with air ionisation and better filtration.
On top of the regular list of safety features (seven airbags, 3-point safety belts, belt tensioning and force limitation), the new C-Class also has child-seat recognition which uses a weight mat to detect if or not a child seat is present. The feature automatically switches off the front passenger airbags when you have your child in place, and reactivates them when the seat is removed.
Then you have a few other Intelligent Drive features that look like this:
- ATTENTION ASSIST: Monitors steering input and recognises signs of driver drowsiness, issuing awakening signals
- COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST PLUS: Monitors traffic ahead and automatically slows the car if drivers fail to react
- Electronic Stability Program
- Pedestrian Protection with active bonnet: Automatically lifts the bonnet in the event of an accident
- ABS, Adaptive Brake, Brake Drying, Hill-Start Assist
- Crash-responsive pedal unit: Automatically stamps on the brake continuously in the event of a crash
Making its debut on the all-new C-Class is Mercedes-Benz’s AGILITY SELECT system, which displaces the previous E, S, M button for the transmission mode, and any sport switches for active dampers and what not.
AGILITY SELECT is a one-button-fits-all type arrangement, which manipulates the DIRECT STEER steering weightiness, transmission shift points, and throttle response. Five modes are available: Comfort, ECO, Sport, Sport+ and Individual. The fifth mode lets you customise each setting to match your given style.
Before you hurry over to a dealership, you may want to hold out a little bit longer for a locally-assembled C-Class (due before Q2 next year). The CKD units will have much more attractive prices, and likely be as equipped as the cars you see today.
Bear in mind also that just because the C 200 and C 250 are all that’s here, other C-Class variants like the base C 180 to any C-Class Estate are also available via something MBM calls an “indent order”. In short, MBM’s Vice President, Kai Schlickum, tells us that, “If you want, we’ll get it for you.”
Mercedes-Benz Malaysia will do you its standard four-year, unlimited mileage warranty service – as is applicable for all official passenger vehicles of the brand. On top of this, potential customers may look into financing their cars with the company’s various Hire Purchase financing methods, such as Agility, which guarantees the future value of your car.