Mercedes C-Class Estate is a classy drive

Hugh Maguire: finds the C-Class very rewarding

Mercedes C-Class Estate is a classy drive

The new C-Class range boasts an excellent line up of new petrol and diesel power plants and there are three trim/spec levels, Avantgarde, Exclusive and AMG Line.

The model on test this week is the new C200d auto, AMG Line Estate.

Estate car sales have suffered somewhat against the ever increasing popularity of SUV’s, however a week living with the C-Class estate reminded me of the virtues of a car over an SUV.

So has it got street cred?

In AMG body style it looks elegant and has a real presence on the road.

The sweeping curves and distinctive lines make it a most distinguished looking car. Finished in Iridium silver metallic with two tone black and polished alloy AMG wheels it really looked super. One of the most attractive estate cars available!

What's it like inside?

The cabin of the C-Class AMG is simply beautiful and has a superb air of class and quality that is unrivalled in this class.

I like the centrally mounted information screen and rotary control for audio and climate, sat-nav and phone functions without making it over complex and fussy. I love the tactile chrome switches for the climate control in the centre console, so much better and much safer than having to try to use a touchscreen when driving!

The build quality is simply excellent and the level of standard equipment in the AMG model on test is luxurious. I particularly like the beautiful black Artico upholstery and aluminium trim.

Standard kit on the AMG includes, AMG body styling, a host of safety features, excellent audio system, Bluetooth, cruise control, 2 zone Thermatic climate control, multifunction steering wheel, sports suspension with sports direct steer system, Interior light package, keyless go, heated front seats, and much more. Features worth special mention include the Collision Prevention Assist, Attention Assist, Reversing Camera, Eco Start/Start, A host of options are also available, including Mercedes Connect Me, and various Apps, Advantage Pack and more.

What is under the bonnet?

The C200d is powered by a 4-cylinder 1598cc turbo diesel. Max power is 160bhp and this is mated in this test car to an 9-speed auto box with paddle shift levers which is superb.

Performance is good indeed reaching 100 km/h from a standstill in just 8.2 seconds and cruising onto a top speed of 220 km/h. In reality this translates to a very useable spread of power with good reserves for safe and swift overtaking.

On the economy front it is mighty impressive burning just 5.2 litres per 100km, over my road test giving the C200d a range close to 1000km between refuels! Road tax is just €270.00

Will I enjoy driving it?

The new C-Class AMG feels very solid and refinement levels are high with wind, road and engine noise all well suppressed.

The ride is a perfect blend between comfort and agility, even with the slightly firmerAMG sports suspension. The car remains composed on even the most challenging roads. The handling is more dynamic too making this new C-Class AMG a joy to hustle along. Grip is tenacious, the C-Class AMG is actually good fun to drive.

what is the final verdict?

The more I drove the car the more I liked it. You begin to appreciate its hidden engineering virtues, and these become even more apparent with every kilometre behind the wheel.

The new C-Class AMG is a beautifully engineered car and is much more rewarding to drive than an SUV while offering similar levels of practicality. Price for the C-Class 200d AMG Line is €45,200.