The all-new Mercedes C-class has 'broken the mould' by moving dramatically away from the traditional recipe for the company’s smallest rear-drive model, according to company bosses.
It’s also claimed that the new aluminium-steel hybrid architecture also sets new standards in global crash tests – some of which are more onerous than those used by Euro NCAP.
The new model – which arrives in the UK next Spring – gets an all-new aluminium and steel platform, all-new suspension – with a new four-link, double-wishbone system upfront and a much more 'dramatic and expressive' interior design.
The W205-series C-class will also offer executive car options including air suspension (unique in this segment, Mercedes claims), 360deg radar sensors, front and rear stereo cameras, a climate control system offering filtered and ionised air, and a head-up display.
Inside, the C-class's interior is much more dramatically styled, leaving behind all the influences of the classic W124 model. The interior quality is also claimed to have been improved markedly over the current car.
All versions of the C-class (even the five per cent of sales that are expected to leave the factory with a manual transmission) get the new-generation central controller, which combines a smartphone-style touchpad with a control wheel. The touchpad can also be used a rest for the driver’s wrist without being activated.
This week in Munich, Mercedes engineers revealed some of the key structures in the new C-class platform, including the front and rear cast aluminium suspension mounts and the new cast aluminium rear axle mount. The latter component replaces the current C-class's sub-assembly, which is made up of 13 different steel pressings as well as being nearly 40 per cent lighter.