The latest Mercedes-Benz C-class sedan is very similar to the miniature S-class. It looks similar inside and out to the brand’s flagship sedan and offers many of the same technological features, only in a smaller package that is sportier to drive. The plush interior impresses with plush materials and a modern display screen, but has too many touch-sensitive controls for our liking. A smooth turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four is standard in the C300 model, and there are more powerful AMG C43 and C63 variants (reviewed separately) if you want your C-class with a big helping of grunt. The standard C-class offered strong performance but lacked chassis refinement, as the ride could be uncomfortable on rough roads and the steering lacked feedback. Although it doesn’t drive as well as rivals including the BMW 3 series and Audi A4, the C class is still a strong contender in the compact luxury sedan segment.
What’s New for 2023?
The sedan was redesigned for 2022, and Mercedes hasn’t made any changes for 2023 yet. For now, versions of the previous-generation C-class coupe and convertible are carried over to 2023, but we expect it to eventually be replaced by the new one. models called CLE classes.
Price and Which One to Buy
We will choose the C300 sedan because it is the latest generation of the C-class. The sedan now offers three trim levels—Premium, Exclusive, and Pinnacle—which bring together popular options. We think the Exclusive trim is the best value. There are still plenty of a-la-carte options, including the sporty-looking AMG Line package, panoramic sunroof and navigation. Adding the 4Matic all-wheel drive costs an additional $2000.
Engine, Transmission and Performance
All of the 2023 C-class sedans are powered by the same 255-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder and wear the C300 name badge on the sleek trunk lid. The turbo four is enhanced by a 48-volt hybrid system that can temporarily provide up to 20 extra horsepower. All-wheel drive remains an option with rear-wheel drive as standard; a nine-speed automatic is the only gearbox on offer. In our tests, the all-wheel drive C300 4Matic hit 60 mph in 5.3 seconds, beating previous generation C class of 0.1 second. Handling is nimble, as one would expect from a compact sports sedan, but we were disappointed by its lack of sharp steering feel and ride quality. Braking performance was good and the C300 stopped from 70 mph at just 154 feet, but we appreciated the firmer pedal feel. The C300 coupe and convertible, both running until 2023 on the previous-generation C-class platform, are powered by a turbocharged four-cylinder that also makes 255 horsepower but doesn’t use the same 48-volt hybrid system as the sedan. .
Real World Fuel and MPG Savings
The EPA estimates that a Class C rear-wheel drive example should produce up to 25 mpg city and 36 mpg highway; adding all-wheel drive brings those numbers down by 2 mpg respectively to 24 mpg city and 33 mpg highway. In our 75 mph highway fuel economy testThe C300 4Matic’s all-wheel drive, all-wheel drive beat road ratings with 35 mpg. For more information on class C fuel economy, visit EPA website.
Interior, Comfort and Cargo
The C-class comes with a high-tech cabin that mirrors the larger S-class flagship. All models are equipped with a digital gauge display, touch-sensitive controls and a number of amenities. The new model uses a similar steering wheel to the S-class, and Mercedes offers many of the standard luxury features such as heated front seats with memory settings, a sunroof, open-pore wood trim and aluminum accents. Overall, the C-class is about 2.5 inches longer than the previous model and its wheelbase has been stretched an inch. Mercedes-Benz says that results in more legroom in the rear seats, but in reality the difference is negligible.
Infotainment and Connectivity
A large, vertically oriented 12.3-inch infotainment display sweeps away from the center console and toward the three circular air vents on the upper dash. The touchscreen is tilted slightly towards the driver for easier use while driving and it runs Mercedes’ latest version of the MBUX infotainment system— complete with voice-activated digital assistant, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and online access via Wi-Fi Hotspot. All models also come with an 11.9-inch digital gauge display and a fingerprint sensor to authenticate the driver’s unique profile for memory settings. A head-up display, wireless smartphone charging pad, ambient lighting system and Burmester surround sound stereo system are optional extras.
Safety and Driver Assistance Features
Mercedes equips the C-class with a number of standards driver assistance features but sadly the coolest car technology, which includes an adaptive cruise control system that leverages navigation data to adjust vehicle speed for upcoming turns and roundabouts, is still optional. For more information on class-C crash test results, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) website. Key safety features include:
- Standard automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection
- Lane departure warnings are available with lane maintenance assistance
- There is adaptive cruise control with lane centering features
Warranty and Maintenance Coverage
Although such rivals BMW, Originand volvo offering free maintenance for three years, Mercedes-Benz removes the benefit of its standard warranty offer. Otherwise, all new Benzes come with an industry-standard plan that covers most things up to four years or 50,000 miles.
- The limited warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles
- The powertrain warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles
- No free scheduled maintenance
2022 Mercedes-Benz C300 4Matic
Vehicle Type: front engine, all-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door sedan
Basic/As Tested: $46,600/$63,590
Options: Peak trim package (Burmester surround sound, surround-view system, navigation with added video, head-up view), $3950; AMG line (sport suspension and steering, flat-bottom steering wheel, cross-bore brake rotors, AMG body kit), $3400; nappa leather, $2590; driver assistance package (adaptive cruise control with steering assist, active brake assist), $1700; LED headlamp, $1100; sunroofs, $1000; Selenite gray paint, $750; 19-inch wheels, $600; ventilated front seats, $450; SiriusXM Radio, $350; additional 12V and USB port, $300; heated steering wheel, $250; dash cam, $200; wood trim, $200; acoustic glass, $150
turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve inline-4, aluminum block and head, direct fuel injection
Displacement: 122 inches31991 cm3
Power: 255 hp @ 5800 rpm
Torque: 295 lb-ft @ 2000 rpm
Suspension, F/R: multilink/multilink
Brakes, F/R: 13.5-in vented, cross-drilled disc/13.0-in vented disc
Tires: Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 5
F: 225/40R-19 93Y MO
R: 255/35R-19 96Y MO
Wheelbase: 112.8 inches
Length: 187.0 inches
Width: 71.7 inches
Height: 56.6 inches
Passenger Volume: 94 ft3
Trunk Volume: 13 ft3
Restraint Weight: 4044 lb
CD TEST RESULTS
60 mph: 5.3 seconds
1/4-Mile: 14.0 s @ 98 mph
100 mph: 14.7 seconds
The above result removes 1 foot launch from 0.3 seconds.
Rolling Start, 5–60 mph: 6.4 seconds
Top Gear, 30–50 mph: 3.3 sec
Top Gear, 50–70 mph: 4.2 sec
Top Speed (gov ltd): 129 mph
Braking, 70–0 mph: 154 ft
Braking, 100–0 mph: 314 ft
Road hold, 300 ft Skidpad: 0.91 g
CD FUEL ECONOMY
Observed: 25 mpg
Driving on the Highway 75 mph: 35 mpg
75 mph Highway Range: 600 miles
EPA FUEL ECONOMY
Combined/City/Highway: 27/23/33 mpg
CD TESTING EXPLAINED
More Features and Specifications