The 2019 Mercedes-Benz C300 Coupe Is Quicker, Still Looks Great

Choose nearly some of today's entry-luxury vehicles and you're set for a four-cylinder engine. Sure, most players with this space provide a better six-cylinder option, but BMW's 3-series, Audi's A4, and Mercedes-Benz's C-class all come standard having a turbocharged inline-four. Many of these "base" powerplants deliver surprisingly hot performance, although that wasn't quite the situation using the Benz-at least it wasn't until this season.

For 2019, Mercedes has replaced its laggard-for-the-class engine within the entry-level C300 sedan, convertible, and coupe having an all-new 2.0-liter turbo four. Horsepower is up 14 ponies, to 255, while peak torque remains in a stout 273 lb-ft. This change, plus a swap from the seven-speed automatic transmission to Benz's latest nine-speed unit, which happened for that 2018 model year, will be the primary contributors to the most recent C300's improved performance.

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Austin IrwinCar and Driver

A HIGHLY EFFECTIVE Upgrade
With this vehicle class, such base-model four-cylinder engines exist at the very least partly to supply buyers (and automakers wanting to please regulators) a far more fuel-efficient option, and the brand new engine has massively upped the C300 coupe's fuel-economy game. Inside our 75-mph highway fuel-economy test, the rear-wheel-drive C300 delivered an astonishing 37 mpg-6 mpg much better than the EPA's highway estimate. If you'd like maximum efficiency within your compact Mercedes, miss the available 4Matic all-wheel-drive system. The only real 2017 C300 coupe we tested was included with that feature, and between it as well as the older engine, that model scored a so-so 29 mpg on our highway test loop. A rear-drive 2017 C300 convertible returned 32 mpg in exactly the same test, and an all-wheel-drive 2019 C300 sedan with the brand new engine that people tested separately notched a good 33-mpg score.

Performance also gets a welcome bump, with the new turbo engine helping the 2019 C300 to create a zero-to-60-mph time of 5.6 seconds, 0.6 second quicker than before. The quarter-mile time is similarly improved by half of a second. Those times still trail those of the Benz's key competitors, the Audi A5 2.0T as well as the BMW 430i, however the gaps have narrowed. The A5, for instance, remains a hot rod among four-cylinder entry-luxury coupes, reaching 60 mph in 5.0 seconds flat.

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Austin IrwinCar and Driver

Subjective scrutiny of the brand new engine is really a mixed bag. The four-cylinder feels more wanting to rev than before, also it suffers less turbo lag (wherein the driver presses the gas pedal however the turbocharger hasn't yet spun up and begun helping the engine produce extra power, which registers as flaccid initial response). Mercedes's nine-speed automatic transmission also lends the engine a perkier character, because of the additional selection of ratios and shorter gearing in first through seventh gears in accordance with the old seven-speed unit. Sadly, the brand new engine still belts out a set, blender-like sound when being worked hard.

Still Sexy
Our favorite area of the C300 coupe, its looks, are unaffected for 2019. Freshened headlights and taillights will be the only external changes because of this fetching two-door, that includes a pert appearance and elegant lines. Every Mercedes-Benz coupe looks basically the same regardless of its size, excepting only the AMG GT sports vehicle, meaning the C-class has quite similar visual punch because the larger and far pricier E- and S-class coupes.

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Austin IrwinCar and Driver

Mercedes also offers retuned the C300's over-the-road behavior to become nearer to those larger coupes' comfortable, luxurious comportments. Where in fact the previous C coupe's ride quality was firm bordering on harsh, particularly at the trunk end, there now could be a larger sense of cushioned refinement. Wheel impacts over road imperfections are quieter, and jolts to your body are softer.

None of the changes appear to experienced any influence on the C300's agility or sense of control. Our summer-tire-equipped test car recorded exactly the same 0.91 g round the skidpad like a 2017 model we tested. (The 19-inch high-performance tires certainly are a no-cost option, however the AMG-style wheels they're installed on cost $500.) The 2019 coupe's braking distance from 70 mph is really a minor six feet longer compared to the 2017's, though it stopped inside a still-good 163 feet.

Similarly, all of those other C-class's classy package remains exactly the same. The glamorous interior will wow friends and family, particularly if you option up your C300 with $16,415 in extras like those on our test car. Of this sum, $2250 was due to the enhanced-for-2019 Driver Assistance package. An upgraded electronics architecture helps the C-class support improved active-safety features, including a computerized lane-change feature along with a smarter radar-based cruise control system. An electronic gauge cluster (a $750 option) is new. And talking about prices, the 2019 C300 coupe starts at $44,795-only $600 a lot more than the 2018 version. For the brand new engine's extra pep and efficiency, that's as eye-popping because the C-class coupe's design.

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Austin IrwinCar and Driver

Specifications
Specifications

2019 Mercedes-Benz C300 Coupe

VEHICLE TYPE
front-engine, rear-wheel-drive, 4-passenger, 2-door coupe

PRICE AS TESTED
$61,210 (base price: $44,795)

ENGINE TYPE
turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve inline-4, aluminum block and head, direct fuel injection

Displacement
122 cu in, 1991 cc
Power
255 hp @ 5800 rpm
Torque
273 lb-ft @ 1800 rpm

TRANSMISSION
9-speed automatic with manual shifting mode

CHASSIS
Suspension (F/R): multilink/multilink
Brakes (F/R): 13.0-in vented disc/11.8-in vented disc
Tires: Continental ContiSportContact 5P SSR, F: 225/40R-19 93Y MOE R: 255/35R-19 96Y MOE

DIMENSIONS
Wheelbase: 111.8 in
Length: 184.5 in
Width: 71.3 in
Height: 55.3 in
Passenger volume: 80 cu ft
Trunk volume: 11 cu ft
Curb weight: 3648 lb

C/D
TEST RESULTS
Zero to 60 mph: 5.6 sec
Zero to 100 mph: 14.5 sec
Zero to 130 mph: 27.5 sec
Rolling start, 5-60 mph: 6.4 sec
Top gear, 30-50 mph: 3.4 sec
Top gear, 50-70 mph: 4.8 sec
Standing ¼-mile: 14.2 sec @ 99 mph
Top speed (governor limited): 132 mph
Braking, 70-0 mph: 163 ft
Roadholding, 300-ft-dia skidpad*: 0.91 g
*stability-control-inhibited

C/D
FUEL ECONOMY
Observed: 22 mpg
75-mph highway driving: 37 mpg
Highway range: 640 miles

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