New Mercedes-Benz C300 coupe emulates pricier S-class

Mercedes-Benz released photos and details of its upcoming C-class coupe, a car that benefits from much of the same technology as the much more expensive flagship S-class.

Wayne Cunningham Managing Editor / Roadshow
Wayne Cunningham reviews cars and writes about automotive technology for CNET's Roadshow. Prior to the automotive beat, he covered spyware, Web building technologies, and computer hardware. He began covering technology and the Web in 1994 as an editor of The Net magazine.
Wayne Cunningham
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2017 Mercedes-Benz C-class coupe
Mercedes-Benz previews the coupe version of its latest generation C-class before its unveiling at the Frankfurt auto show. Mercedes-Benz

Mercedes-Benz's latest S-class sets an impressive standard for high-tech comfort, but at around $100,000, sits above the general public's purchasing power. The newly announced C-class coupe offers many of the high-tech features as its bigger brother, but should come in substantially cheaper.

The new C-class coupe, to be sold in the US as the C300 and C300 4Matic, is the coupe version of the current generation C-class sedan . That model fits into the midsize segment in the US. The coupe version makes use of a more raked roofline and two-door cabin access. It sits 0.6 inch lower than the sedan, emphasizing the sport-oriented nature of the car, and can be optioned with Mercedes-Benz's exceptional air suspension, with sport and comfort settings.

Unlike the C-class sedan, Mercedes-Benz will only offer a turbocharged 2-liter four-cylinder engine in the C300, good for 241 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. Although this output puts the C300 behind the power options in BMW's 4-series , Mercedes-Benz will likely come out with a high-powered AMG version of the C-class coupe.

The C300 4Matic coupe adds all-wheel drive to the performance mix.

Mercedes-Benz previews sporty 2017 C-class coupe (pictures)

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Much of Mercedes-Benz's driver assistance features will be available, such as adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist and automated parallel parking. These features represent the most advanced in the industry, and can be seen as stepping stones to fully autonomous driving technologies.

Cabin tech gets upgraded over the previous C-class coupe to Mercedes-Benz's latest infotainment system, combining its traditional jog dial with a touchpad capable of alphanumeric and gesture input. Along with navigation, hands-free phone and digital audio, the system supports a set of third-party apps powered by a dedicated data connection. Mercedes-Benz rounds out the cabin tech with a Burmester audio system.

Mercedes-Benz notes that the new C-class coupe comes in an inch and half longer than the previous-generation coupe. However, reduced weight will improve handling and fuel economy.

The new Mercedes-Benz C-class coupe will be officially unveiled at the Frankfurt auto show in September. It will go on sale next year in the US as a 2017 model year car. Pricing has not yet been announced.