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Mercedes unveils new C-Class Estate

The second model to join the latest C-Class line-up after the saloon, the fourth-generation estate is being billed as a ‘multifaceted lifestyle vehicle – outstanding for everyday use’.

With similar striking looks to the saloon, the estate offers increased dimensions, particularly compared to the last model. The wheelbase is 80mm longer compared with the previous estate at 2,840mm and 40mm wider (1,810mm), with the extra space primarily given to the rear seat passengers.

Boot space is up by 5 litres to 490 litres whilst the maximum load capacity rises 10 litres to 1,510 litres. There’s also now a 40:20:40 split instead of the 60:40 split in the predecessor, enabling the car to be used as a five-seater, four-seater, three-seater or two-seater.

And the rear-seat backrests can now be unlocked and folded electrically at the push of a button to create an enlarged and level load compartment. To aid practicality, there’s an optional Easy Pack power liftgate and Hands-Free Access system.

Inside, there’s a new, more luxurious interior. Technology highlights include the new touchpad, which uses finger gesture operation for all the head-unit functions, and a head-up display with information on vehicle speed, signed speed limits, navigation instructions and Distronic messages.

The C-Class Estate also see Mercedes’ introduction of a new package of services in Europe under the name "Mercedes connect me". This features its own SIM card integrated into the vehicle and offers services including accident, maintenance and breakdown management. Customers can also connect to their vehicle from anywhere and at any time via "Mercedes connect me“ and, among other things, find out how much fuel they’ve got or programme the heating system.

Using the same chassis as the saloon, the estate weighs up to 65kg less. There’s a choice of two versions of the standard-specification steel suspension, which includes a sporty set-up. Mercedes is now also offering air suspension, marking a first in this segment. The AirMATIC air suspension features all-round self-levelling for optimum ride comfort even with the vehicle loaded.

Depending on the equipment level, drivers can also choose from various preconfigured drive programmes – "Comfort", "ECO", "Sport" and "Sport+" – along with an "Individual" option that enables the vehicle to be configured to suit their own preferences.

Exact details of the engine line-up haven’t been announced but there will be a range of four-cylinder diesels covering 113bhp to 201bhp.

In addition, there will be a diesel hybrid in the form of the C 300 BlueTEC Hybrid with a 201bhp diesel engine with a 27bhp electric motor and delivering 74mpg in NEDC combined mode. The four-cylinder C 350 Hybrid with plug-in technology using a 205bhp petrol engine + 66hp electric motor will follow in due course.

Three BlueDirect four-cylinder petrol engines and one BlueDirect six‑cylinder petrol engine with power outputs ranging from 154bhp to 328bhp will initially be available for the new C-Class. 

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day.