By Lou Ann Hammond, Mon, 12 Jul 2004 08:00:00 PDT
Mercedes-Benz has made revisions to their 2005 least-expensive model, the C-Calss. The C-Class offers seven models under $40,000 in three body styles: sedan, wagon, and a 2 door hatchback coupe. Mercedes has a two-pronged porduct differentiation, breaking the C-Class into Sport and Luxury versions. The 2005 luxury vehicles come in sedans and wagons and embody the traditional luxury, elegant styling, comfort/convenience and safety that is legendary Mercedes. The 2005 sport vehicles are taking on the competition in a sedan and coupe by providing performance, aggressive styling and technology.
The 2005 C230s have a 189hp supercharged 1.8 liter 4-cyl engine in sport coupe and sport sedan trim. The 2005 C240s have a 168hp V6 2.6 liter and come as luxury sedans and wagons. The 2005 C320s have a 3.2 liter 215-hp V6; they come as a Sport coupe and sedan, and as a Luxury sedan and wagon. The new 2005 high-performance ultra luxury C55 AMG sedan has a 5.5 liter 362-hp V8. It is distinguished by the distinct front-end styling from the other C-Class models. Rear-wheel drive is standard. The C240 sedan and wagon and C320 sedan are available with Mercedes 4Matic all-wheel drive.
For 2005, Luxury sedans and wagons get the 7-spoke 16" wheels, neutral tinted glass on the windshield, a new radiator grill and door handles that match the body color. The interior boasts new wood trim, seats with a new stitch pattern and additional padding and a 5-speed driver adaptive touch shift automatic.
The 2005 C55 AMG and sports coupes and sedans come with lowered, sport-tuned suspension and 17-inch alloy wheels. Every C-Class has ABS, antiskid/traction control, front/rear side airbags, and head-protecting curtain side airbags. Options include a navigation system and bi-xenon headlamps. Coupes are available with Mercedes' large Panorama sunroof that teams with a fixed-glass panel over the rear seat; each has a power sunshade.
Soon, according to Mercedes-Benz, the C-Class won't be Mercedes' smallest U.S. car, as two subcompacts are reportedly on the way. One is the redesigned version of the Euro-market A-Class hatchback, likely for 2006 or '07. The other is a Smart minivan-ish type vehicle.
The 2005 Mercedes-Benz C-Class line-up