The 2018 C-Class is offered in several trims: C300, C300d diesel, C350e plug-in hybrid, C450 AMG Sport, AMG C63 and AMG C63 S. Rear-wheel drive is standard, while Mercedes-Benz' 4MATIC all-wheel-drive system is available on the C300, C300d and C450 AMG Sport. The C-Class coupe comes in C300 and C300 4MATIC trims only.
The C300 is powered by a turbocharged 4-cylinder engine displacing 2.0 liters and making a stout 241 horsepower. The C300d is powered by a 2.1L biturbo 4-cylinder diesel that makes 195 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque. Next is the C350e plug-in hybrid, with power derived from the 2.0L four in addition to a 6.2 kWh lithium-ion battery. The combination is good for 275 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. In the C450, there's a 3.0L twin-turbocharged V6 that produces 362 horsepower and 383 pound-feet of torque. Finally, the AMG C63 tops them all with its 4.0L twin-turbocharged V8, rated at 469 horsepower and 503 pound-feet of torque. A 7-speed automatic transmission is standard across the range; in the AMG models it is a heavy-duty AMG Speedshift unit. Fuel economy in the C300 is rated at 25 on the highway and 34 in the city.
Like most European luxury cars, the C-Class can be optioned up with a huge variety of convenience and luxury features. However, the C300, C350d and C350e come with quite a few amenities on their own. Standard features include a 14-way power adjustable driver's seat, dual-zone climate control, two high-resolution screens with a touchpad interface, USB connectivity, Bluetooth audio streaming and LED daytime running lamps.
The C450 AMG includes everything on the C300, plus a Burmester premium sound system, heated front seats, sport tuned suspension, larger brakes to go beneath the 18-inch wheels, and of course, a bigger, more-powerful engine.
In addition to the V8, the AMG C63 features wider 18-inch wheels and a mechanical limited-slip differential, while the AMG C63 S ups the ante with 19-inch wheels, larger brakes with red calipers, an electronic limited-slip differential and more.
An optional Interior Package adds leather seating, perforated and ventilated front seats, a powered front passenger seat and some additional interior lighting. An Air-Balance Package further spruces up the interior environment with an air purifier and a cabin fragrance system that will perfume the air in the C-Class.
A Multimedia Package includes a navigation system, as well as a rear view camera and SiriusXM satellite radio.
An adjustable air suspension system that can be set for sport or for comfort is available on the C-Class, as is a Driver's Assistance Package, which includes safety features such as blind spot assist and Mercedes-Benz' PRE-SAFE system, which can actually activate the brakes on its own, should it detect an impending accident.
Standard safety equipment on C-Class models includes nine airbags as well as adaptive braking technology, attention assist and of course all-wheel drive is available.
The C in the Mercedes-Benz C-Class may as well stand for consistency.
The compact C-Class sedan's competency stands alongside death and taxes on the list of life's guarantees, and a midcycle refresh for the 2019 model year solidifies its spot on that list. There's more power and more tech to keep up with a segment that shows no signs of slowing amid a shift to SUVs, and while it errs toward luxury, it's not afraid to have a bit of fun.
As we noted in our first drive, Mercedes chose not to radically restyle the C-Class for 2019 because its buyers continue to heap praise on the sedan's visuals. Sure, there are niceties like standard LED headlights tucked away in the update to this four-year-old body, but by and large, buyers will be hard-pressed to point out all the changes made for this year.
The Good The C300's revised powertrain feels great and it has more tech than ever.
The Bad The rear seat can get tight, and like every other Benz, it gets pricey in a hurry.
The Bottom Line The C300 offers 70 percent of the S-Class experience for 50 percent of the price.
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