Steve sets to find out whether the current C Class Coupe can live up to its sporting credentials.
The current C Class range was launched at the 2014 Detroit Motor Show and released onto UK roads in March of the same year. As per its predecessor the new C Class was available in saloon, estate, convertible and coupe form, the latter is the model I will focus on for this review and was designated by Mercedes as the C205.
It cannot be denied that the looks of the C Class Coupe are elegantly proportioned thanks to a it’s smooth flowing roof line and curves in all the right places. This has allowed for a long sloping bonnet, which all in all gives the car real road presence and should please even the most picky image conscious buyer. The exterior design is also helped by the bodykit which is fitted as standard as well as LED rear lights and Xenon headlights. I particularly liked the design of the exterior door mirrors which feature built in indicators and have the power folding function.
Just like the exterior the cabin is well appointed, with nice flowing lines along with an uncluttered dash gives the Coupe a smart appearance. The minimalist layout does not detract from the C Class Coupes features as most of the controls are managed through the infotainment system. As you’d expect from a car in this class a digital radio, Bluetooth, cruise control, rain sensing wipers, automatic headlights, heated mirrors, lumbar support, multi-function steering wheel, automatic climate control and parking sensors are standard. There’s certainly plenty of space for front seat passengers but it might prove a struggle for rear passengers on longer journeys. But I must admit that the space as improved over the previous C Class Coupe.
The C Class Coupe is available with four petrol engines which include an entry level 1.6 litre C180 with 156bhp, 1.5 litre C200 and 2.0 litre C300 all of which are four cylinders. Furthermore there’s a C43 V6 and the stonking C63 twin turbo V8 available in either 469bhp for the standard version of 503bhp for the S version. As a sign of the times only two four cylinder diesel engines are offered which are the C220 which is a 2.0 turbo which produces 191bhp, or the C300 2.1 litre turbo which produces a very respectable 242bhp and a claimed 57mpg. Two gearboxes are offered, either a 6 speed manual or the more popular and thus more desirable 9 speed automatic. In addition the C Class coupe is set up as rear wheel drive as standard and is more than adequate for what day to day driving will throw at it, but Mercedes 4matic four wheel drive system is available on most models but I feel is only really only necessary in very rural locations.
As you’d expect Mercedes haven’t compromised the C Class Coupe when it comes to safety and as such it is fitted with Antilock Braking System, all round airbags, Electronic Stability Program, Parktronic with reversing camera, child seat recognition sensor, fatigue alert for long journeys, collision prevention assist and brake assist for emergency braking combined with hold function as standard. As I’m sure you’ll agree the amount of safety features is second to none.
Driving the C Class Coupe
The car I have on test is a 2018 C200 AMG Line Premium which is fitted with the 1.5 litre twin-scroll turbo petrol engine, which produces 181bhp combined with 280Nm of torque and mated to the 9 speed G-Tronic automatic gearbox. This particular car is fitted with the premium package which includes heated front seats, ambient lighting, a 12.3” display, panoramic sunroof, wireless charging, command online and an uprated sound system. The Premium Plus package costs a whopping £4,995 (2019 figure) onto of the basic vehicle price of £37,025 which includes VAT, and has the multi spoke wheels which are also a £595 extra.
Unlike other reviews on the C200 petrol engine within the motoring press, I found the 2.0 petrol punchy as well as having more than enough power/torque for good acceleration and momentum in all driving environments which is supported by a 0-62mph time of 7.7 seconds. This will be partly helped by the automatic gearbox which had both smooth and quick gear changes, combined with a good kick down. However I did find the engine less refined than some of the C Class Coupe’s revivals as well as being slightly noisy when revved hard. I will admit that this will be partly affected by the sound proofing and in normal conditions especially when cruising, the engine noise intrusion into the cabin is limited. I can’t see it being a big issue for buyers as overall the C200 is a very reasonable all round engine and can achieve MPG figures of 46.3.
Out on the open road the ride is firm but the suspension still irons out the bumps well, thus enabling it to be both comfortable and composed. Furthermore the steering is nicely weighted, allowing it to be light but precise. This is thanks to Mercedes Direct steer system which is also speed sensitive. To round off the handling are perforated front brake discs which stop the CLK Coupe on a dime. Another nice touch is that the driver has the choice of selecting different driving modes which include; eco, comfort, sport, sport+ and individual which offers a driving mode for all driver preferences and road conditions. I also found the leather seats very supportive, with very good side bolsters as well as being electrically controlled and fitted with lumbar support.
The Motorists Guide View
When road testing any vehicle I try not to have any preconceptions about its build quality, how it will drive or even how it will make me feel. However as one would expect from a Mercedes the cabin has a quality feel and the handling is surefooted. Not only that, I feel the exterior design is a lot more refined to that of the previous C Class Coupe. My only real concern before I tested this car was the 1.5 litre engine, as I was concerned that it would underperform and ultimately mean the car could have under delivered. But I can safely say that my doubts were quashed instantly, as I found the C200 engine more than capable in all road conditions with plenty of power and torque. The only drawback I found with the engine was that it is a little unrefined, but I feel this is a small price to pay when you consider the all-round package the C Class Coupe has to offer.
Width including mirrors: 2,016mm