Mercedes-Benz C Class Saloon C220d AMG Line 4dr 9G-Tronic

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  • 9 speed Automatic
  • Diesel
  • 61.4 MPG (combined)
  • CO2
    117/km
  • 0 - 62 MPH 7.5 secs
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Included (£0.00 p/m) Standard option
Top speed 146 mph
Power 170 bhp
0 - 62 mph 7.5 seconds
Torque 400 Nm
Gears 9 speeds
MPG 61.4 mpg
CO2 117 g/km
Boot space 480 litres
Seats 5
Fuel type Diesel
Length 4686 mm
Height 1810 mm
Width 1442 mm
Weight 1570 kgs

Whatcar? Review

For

The C-Class has a seriously classy cabin, while low CO2 emissions bring attractive company car tax bills. You get plenty of standard equipment, too.

Against

None of the engines is particularly refined, and you need to add the optional air suspension to make the C-Class ride well at high speeds. It’s not cheap, either.

Summary

The Mercedes C-Class is a good executive saloon, but it can’t quite match the best in the class.

Performance

The diesel C220 Bluetec pulls strongly from low revs, and the swift acceleration continues beyond 4000rpm. The C250 Bluetec has a bit more mid-range oomph, but isn’t really worth the extra money. You have to work the engine in the C200 Bluetec hard to get anywhere in a hurry, and it often feels slow. The C200 petrol is fast enough but requires plenty of revs, whereas the AMG C63 has power to spare, either in standard or even faster ‘S’ form.

Ride & Handling

The optional Airmatic suspension does a really good job of keeping things comfortable on the motorway, although the ride can become a little crashy around town. Put this suspension in ‘Sport’ and things tighten up noticeably; in fact, you can drive the C-Class along a twisty road pretty rapidly. We’d certainly recommend the air suspension, because none of the standard set-ups delivers a settled ride or especially agile handling. The exception is the fast AMG C63 model, which handles superbly.

Refinement

This is one of the few areas where the C-Class disappoints. The diesel engines sound gruff and transmit too much vibration into the cabin, and the C200 petrol is also pretty unrefined by modern standards. There’s plenty of road noise on the motorway, and the C-Class doesn’t shut out wind noise as well as the best executive cars – particularly those C-Classes equipped with the optional panoramic glass roof.

Buying & Owning

The C-Class is priced in line with its closest rival, the BMW 3 Series, which means it’s more expensive than an Audi A3 Saloon or Volvo S60. Go for a manual gearbox and CO2 emissions are remarkably low by class standards, while even the more popular automatic models offer comparatively low company car tax bills. Official fuel economy also impresses, while resale values should be relatively strong.

Quality & Reliability

Interior quality is one of the C-Class’s biggest assets. Every surface looks a grade above what you’ll find in a BMW 3 Series, while most of the buttons and switches feel solid and well damped. AMG Line models are classier still, thanks to dashboards wrapped in imitation leather. This generation of C-Class didn’t feature in our most recent customer satisfaction survey, but the previous model scored above-average marks for reliability.

Safety & Security

All models come with a collision-prevention system that can automatically apply the brakes to stop you running into the vehicle in front. There’s also a tyre-pressure monitoring system to alert you early if you have a slow puncture. If an accident can’t be avoided, seven airbags are on hand to protect you, which helps explain why the C-Class scored impressive marks in its Euro NCAP crash test. A standard alarm and engine immobiliser should help fend off thieves.

Behind The Wheel

Even seriously long-legged drivers will have no problem getting comfortable, thanks to plenty of adjustment to the seat and steering wheel. Visibility is also pretty good by executive car standards. All models come with a seven-inch colour screen that’s controlled using a rotary dial and touchpad positioned between the front seats. Most of the time, though, you’re better off sticking with the rotary dial, which is quicker and easier to use on the move.

Space & Practicality

There’s an enormous amount of front legroom, and plenty of front headroom, too – even in cars equipped with the optional panoramic roof. The glass roof does impinge a little on rear headroom, although six footers will still fit. Boot space is on a par with that in a BMW 3 Series and the load bay is easily wide enough to take a set of golf clubs. Split-folding rear seats are standard on all but the cheapest versions, and the seatbacks lie flush with the boot floor when dropped.

Equipment

Entry-level SE cars come with 16in alloy wheels, man-made leather upholstery, climate and cruise controls, a reversing camera, rain-sensing wipers and a DAB radio. Sport trim is our favourite and gets 17in alloys, flashier interior trim, sat-nav, heated front sports seats, LED headlights, lower suspension, front and rear parking sensors, and split-folding rear seats. AMG Line models come with 18in alloys and an AMG bodykit, while the C63 AMG gets a host of visual upgrades.

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