DaimlerChrysler introduced a new generation of the C-Class on January 18, 2007 and displayed it in the 2007 Geneva Auto Show. Sales started on March 31, 2007 in almost all European countries. The new vehicle has an extended wheelbase and tracks, a stiffer bodyshell and a design inspired by the most recent S-Class and some hints from the CLS-Class. The model has three levels of equipment – Classic, Elegance and Avantgarde. A high performance AMG version with a 6.2 L engine followed in September 2007, labelled C 63 AMG with 457 PS (335 kW)to rival the Audi RS4 and BMW M3. The Classic and Elegance lines retain the traditional Mercedes-Benz radiator grille, with a three-point star bonnet emblem. The Avantgarde line has a grille similar to that on Mercedes’ sport coupe models, with two horizontal bars and a large centre-mounted star. In the UK the Classic line is known as the SE and the Avantgarde line is known as the C-Class Sport , and comes with an AMG bodykit, and AMG alloy wheels as standard. The North American version is slightly different, as the Classic model is dropped. The Elegance is known as the C-Class Luxury and the Avantgarde wearing the AMG sports package is known as the C-Class sport. Both lines have an additional amber light in front of the front wheel well. New saloon and estate versions were announced in 2007, while the CLC-Class Sportcoupé will remain based on the W203 chassis. There will be an increase of component-sharing with other Mercedes’ models, namely the redesigned E- and S-Class, as well as the upcoming GLK-Class compact SUV. Versions of the car are available with a choice of rear- and all-wheel drive (in the latter case an improved version of the 4MATIC system, not available in right-hand drive format), along with a variety of four and six-cylinder engines (and a 6.2 litre V8 in the C 63 AMG). Engines are the straight-4 M271 and V6 M272 petrol engines, straight-4 OM611 + OM651, and V6 OM642 Diesel engines. Six-speed manual transmissions are standard on all models (except the C 350), with the 7G-Tronic seven-gear automatic transmission available for six-cylinder engines (7G-Tronic is available for C 230K, C 280, C 300, C 320 CDI and standard for C 350) and a five speed automatic transmission available for the four cylinder models. In the United States, the C 300 Luxury and C 350 Sport are only available with the 7G-Tronic transmission, and the C 300 Sport comes with a six-speed manual transmission, and the 7G-Tronic automatic transmission as an option. The development of the W204 C-Class involved the use of a “digital prototype”, which put a 2.1 terabyte digital replica of the car through a 15 million mile road course. This is an industry first which allowed for crash testing and more, before a physical prototype was actually constructed. The C 63 AMG is reportedly the first AMG Mercedes designed from the ground up for performance, as compared to previous AMG cars which were more or less focused on the engine. The C 63 has a revised front end architecture that is taken from the CLK 63 AMG Black series. The revised 7-speed automatic transmission now has three shift modes – Comfort, Sport and Manual – with the last one running with the converter locked allowing the driver to hold the engine at the rev limit. The ESP can now be completely turned off, interfering only under heavy braking. The car also has the quickest, most responsive steering of any Mercedes to date. Car and Driver recently tested the car and got a 0-60 mph time of 3.9 seconds; a 0-100 mph time of 9.2 seconds and a quarter-mile time of 12.3 seconds at 116 mph (187 km/h). The top speed is electronically limited to 151 mph (243 km/h). This makes the C 63 the fastest production 4-door sedan in the world in terms of acceleration.
Posted on January 28, 2008 by mercedesamgcars