Mercedes-Benz is launching into the open-air season with the first cabriolet based on the C-Class, thereby rounding off its range of cabriolets with a classic fabric soft top. The new cabriolet's design interprets modern luxury with a youthful touch. Featuring plenty of high-quality details, its distinctive character is most apparent when the top is down. The cabriolet comes standard with AIRSCARF neck-level heating and optionally available AIRCAP automatic draft stop system for exceptional comfort during open-top driving 365 days a year. Efficient, powerful engines and a suspension designed for dynamics (with optional AIRMATIC air suspension on the C300) ensure sportily agile handling. The new 9G-TRONIC 9-speed automatic transmission is standard for all engine variants. Also on board: proven assistance systems and state-of-the-art infotainment. The new C-Class Cabriolet launches in late summer 2016.
"Our new C-Class Cabriolet is the entry into the world of premium cabriolets from Mercedes-Benz. Sporty and youthful in character and styling, it offers unadulterated open-air driving pleasure all year round," says Prof. Dr. Thomas Weber, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and responsible for Group Research and Mercedes-Benz Cars Development.
As the new entry-level model into the cabriolet world of Mercedes-Benz, the C300 Cabriolet, available in both rear-wheel-drive and 4MATIC drivetrains, is a consistent embodiment of the Mercedes-Benz design philosophy: sensual purity as the definition of contemporary luxury. It exhibits an independence of character with a visibly sporty expression and youthfully fresh appeal.
With its top up, the profile of the new two-door cabriolet resembles that of the C-Class Coupe with virtually identical basic dimensions: with a striking front end featuring a diamond radiator grill, standard LED headlamps, long hood and high beltline. Its tightly stretched soft top with glass window transitions harmoniously into the distinctly styled rear end, which has a highly sporty look with its wide shoulders and flat LED tail lights.
The dimensions at a glance:
At the sides, an elongated dropping line extending over the rear wheel arch lends an emphasis typical of Mercedes-Benz design. Thanks to its 0.6-inch lower suspension as standard compared with the sedan, the vehicle already gives a sporty impression with its standard 18-inch standard tires, underlining the sporty character of the Cabriolet.
The same dropping line is taken up by the new Mercedes-AMG C43 Cabriolet which has an even sportier look with its distinct AMG design and specific light-alloy wheels. It thus underscores the progressive nature and performance of the brand.
With the roof open, the meticulously coordinated harmony between exterior and interior design becomes apparent. High-grade details include chrome trim on the A-pillar and windscreen as well as a beltline molding, which extends as far as the soft-top compartment, which it borders with a broad chrome trim.
The fully automatic multi-layer fabric acoustic soft top comes standard in black and is additionally available in dark brown, dark blue and dark red. The multi-layer acoustic soft top noticeably improves speech intelligibility, including at high speeds, and provides better insulation from disruptive ambient noise. The acoustic soft top thus offers optimal climate comfort and quiet-running characteristics.
Based on the S-Class Cabriolet, the soft top also meets high quality standards in terms of durability and function. It can be opened and closed in less than 20 seconds up to a speed of 31 mph. After opening, it folds down quietly and carefully and is stored in the soft-top compartment in the trunk. In terms of its shape and color, the cover of the soft-top compartment is an integral part of the interior and is made of the same material as the beltline.
The occupants enjoy an ambience that, while based on the interior of the C-Class sedan, offers a fresh interpretation with iconic cabriolet features. Especially high-grade materials and build quality give the interior a modern feel of sportiness. The equipment includes heat-reflecting leather in a total of five color shades (optional) as well as a curved switch in matte silver chrome in the center console for opening and closing the fully automatic cabriolet soft top. Based on the Coupe, the sport seats feature muscular side bolsters and organically integrated head restraints as well as standard AIRSCARF neck-level heating. Automatic belt extenders equipped as standard help the occupants with buckling up.
The individual rear seats offer a through-loading feature and can be split 50:50 for everyday practicality and can be individually folded down.
The interior of the Mercedes-AMG C43 Cabriolet reinforces the consistently dynamic bias of the performance brand with numerous specially designed details. Ideal for a committed driving style, the multifunction sport steering wheel in black leather features a flattened bottom section and red contrasting topstitching.
The Cabriolet already comes as standard with a high equipment specification, which is augmented by a wide range of individualization options (some examples: 13 upholstery variants, seven trim variants, four soft-top colors, twelve paint finishes – including a matte finish, leather-covered instrument panel). The roof liner of the soft top is available in black, porcelain and crystal grey. Numerous trim elements in sporty aluminum, carbon fiber or silver fiber glass are complemented by authentic open-pore wood in shades of brown and black.
The AMG-inspired “Sport Package” is available as an alternative to underline the dynamism of the Cabriolet. It differs by virtue of exterior features such as special bumpers and sills with AMG bodystyling, a diamond radiator grille with pins in chrome and 18-inch AMG light-alloy wheels. In the interior, the Sport Package comes with sporty, exclusive highlights, including a multifunction sports steering wheel with flattened bottom section as well as AMG sports pedals. Mechanically, the Sport Package gains a sport suspension and larger machined front brakes with Mercedes-Benz branded calipers.
At the market launch an Edition 1 C-Class Cabriolet will be available in limited supply on rear-wheel-drive and 4MATIC versions of the C300. With a host of perfectly coordinated equipment lines, it combines sportiness with lifestyle, thus perfectly fitting with the sporty-modern look of the new cabriolet.
Customers opting for a cabriolet like to drive with the top down as often as possible. As in the E- and S-Class Cabriolets, all occupants can enjoy maximum open-air comfort thanks to AIRCAP and AIRSCARF, which make the joys of open air driving pleasant even at low temperatures.
Inconspicuously integrated into the roof frame, the optional electric AIRCAP system was specially developed for Mercedes-Benz cabriolets and is coupled to an electric wind blocker behind the rear seats, which reduces the interior turbulence for the rear passengers at the press of a button. AIRCAP is part of the Premium Package. In combination with standard AIRSCARF, these systems extend the open-top driving season to the entire year.
Alternatively, there is also a standard manual folding wind blocker behind the front seats.
The suspension offers a high level of comfort with low road roar and tire vibration characteristics while ensuring agile driving dynamics – the basis for driving enjoyment. The suspension on the Cabriolet, which is 0.6-inches lower in comparison with the sedan, comes as standard with steel springs with a selective damping system. The sport suspension, included with the Sport Package on the C300 RWD and 4MATIC, has firmer springing and damping, including the Sport Direct-Steer system, making for even more agile handling.
Equipped as standard with the AMG RIDE CONTROL sport suspension with adaptive three-stage adjustable damping, the Mercedes-AMG C43 Cabriolet has all the right ingredients to deliver outstanding driving dynamics and exceptionally high comfort on long journeys. The front axle has been provided with stiffer steering knuckles, improved elastokinematics and increased negative camber. In combination with the likewise newly developed wishbone guide bearings, this design results in significantly more agile cornering plus more precise and direct suspension feedback from the road. The driver can select the automatic adjustable damping system's three suspension modes "Comfort," "Sport" and Sport Plus" using a button on the center console to fully customize the driving impression.
The C300 Cabriolet is optionally available with AIRMATIC air suspension, which is unique in the C-Class segment. Its electronically controlled, continuously adjustable damping on the front and rear axles ensures low road roar and tire vibration characteristics in every situation.
DYNAMIC SELECT – standard on all C-Class Cabrios – allows the driver to choose their desired setting: sporty, comfortable or fuel-efficient. To this end, the driver can select one of five transmission modes using the DYNAMIC SELECT switch: "ECO," "Comfort," "Sport," "Sport Plus" and "Individual." Selecting "Individual" allows the driver to customize the vehicle settings to suit their personal preferences.
Powerful and efficient gasoline engines with ECO start/stop function and an extensive 4MATIC range make for sporty performance and driving pleasure all year round.
The new 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission is standard on all engine variants.
The model line-up at a glance:
|Cylinders/ arrangement||Displacement (cc)||Output (hp)||Torque (lb-ft.)||0-60 mph (s)||Top Speed (mph) (electronically limited)|
|C300 RWD and 4MATIC||4/in-line||1991||241||273||6.3||130|
All data provisional; *combined
In a cabriolet, the lack of a roof often results in reduced body stiffness. This fact was taken into consideration by the designers in developing the C-Class sedan. This allowed them to adapt the bodyshell at the front end and on the floor to meet the particular needs of the Cabriolet. Consequently this model features an exemplary stiff design of the kind required for high driving dynamics.
The Coupe's intelligent lightweight construction with a high proportion of aluminum was retained, including the fenders, hood and trunk lid.
There are many safety and assistance systems based on the Mercedes-Benz Intelligent Drive concept to choose from. ATTENTION ASSIST with adjustable sensitivity, which can warn the driver of inattentiveness and drowsiness, is included as standard. Further standard equipment includes COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST PLUS. In addition to a visual proximity warning and an additional audible collision warning, it includes Adaptive Brake Assist, which can help prevent collisions by boosting the brake pressure to suit the situation. When a danger of collision persists and the driver fails to respond, the system is able to carry out autonomous braking at speeds of up to 122 mph, thereby reducing the severity of collisions with slower or stationary vehicles or, in the best-case scenario, even avoiding a collision altogether. At speeds of up to 31 mph, the system also brakes in response to stationary vehicles and is thus able to help prevent rear-end collisions at up to 25 mph.
The optionally available Driving Assistance package includes additional assistance systems that have been significantly extended in terms of their functions. As part of the Intelligent Drive concept, these merge data from various sensor technologies, such as radar sensors and stereo camera and thus make for significantly enhanced safety and comfort. These functions include DISTRONIC PLUS with Steering Assist, PRE-SAFE® Brake with pedestrian detection plus the Brake Assist BAS PLUS, which also offers situation-adaptive brake boosting if there is a risk of collision from crossing traffic. A further function of the Driving Assistance package is Active Lane Keeping Assist, which is capable of preventing unintentional lane departure by means of one-sided, lane-correcting application of the brakes. The system intervenes if the driver crosses a solid lane marking and can assist even in the case of discontinuous lane markings if there is a risk of collision with a vehicle in the adjacent lane.
The multiplicity of assistance systems also includes a Parking Assist for semi-automated parking; a 360° camera for assistance during parking and maneuvering and Adaptive Highbeam Assist Plus, which allows continuous high beam by selectively blanking out other vehicles from the high-beam light cone.
In an accident, optimal protection is afforded by the high structural safety of the body as well as by the restraint systems, especially the comprehensive complement of airbags. These include:
A roll-over protection system has been specifically designed for the Cabriolet. It consists of two cartridges that are fully retracted behind the rear seats and therefore invisible. If a roll-over is imminent, these cartridges are pyrotechnically fired out to provide a survival space together with the A-pillar.
Specially developed for cabriolets, the climate control system responds to whether the vehicle is being driven with the roof up or down. With the roof closed, the system performs in the same way as in the Coupe. With the soft top down, the climate control system adapts by blowing warmer air onto the driver's hands on the steering wheel and deactivating the air recirculation function. The special adjustments for open-top driving make allowance for whether cooling or heating is required and respond sensitively to the transition zones in between.
Intuitive operation with animations and visual effects is offered by the infotainment system. Frontbass ensures a listening experience almost on a par with a concert hall – especially if equipped with the optional Burmester® sound system. The Frontbass system uses the space within the cross-member and side member in the body structure as a resonance chamber for the bass speakers.
The navigation system, which supplies the driver with precise traffic information in real time, processes its contents interactively.
The optionally available COMAND Online system provides not only a larger display of 8.4” and a resolution of 960 x 540 pixels, but offers hard-drive navigation, integral WiFi hotspot functionality and LINGUATRONIC voice control as well as many other features.
Like other models, the new C-Class Cabriolet comes with an extensive range of free Standard Services and Remote Online Services as part of the mbrace connect. Standard Services include automatic emergency call, Accident Recovery as well as breakdown assistance and after-sales service. The Remote Online services make it possible at any time and from anywhere to access vehicle information such as the status of windows and doors, mileage, tire pressures and other diagnostic data.
The 2017 Mercedes-Benz C300 Cabriolet launches in late summer in both rear-wheel-drive and 4MATIC configurations. The 2017 Mercedes-AMG C43 Cabriolet launches in the fall.