2011 NAIAS: 2012 Mercedes-Benz C-Class

Auto Shows | January 11th, 2011 by 10

Detroit – Mercedes-Benz unveiled the 2012 C-Class at this year’s North American International Auto Show. A face-lift of the existing C-Class, it carries the bulk …

Detroit – Mercedes-Benz unveiled the 2012 C-Class at this year’s North American International Auto Show. A face-lift of the existing C-Class, it carries the bulk of the body panels over to the new model year’s cars. There is speculation that a coupe version is to be unveiled at Geneva in March.

Being a direct competitor to the BMW 3, the C-Class has three engine offerings for the North American market. A four cylinder turbo-charged direct injected gasoline engine will power the C250. There will be C300
powered by a 3.0L V6 and available as a Luxury or Sport model or with 4Matic (Mercedes-Benz’s all wheel drive). The C300 models will compete against the 328i equivalents and the new C350 direct injected V6 will be
roughly equivalent to the 335i. An AMG tweaked C-Class to go head-to-head against the M3, possibly wearing the Black Series label (not to be confused with Black Label which comes from a Scottish firm).

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The return a four cylinder model to the C-Class lineup may entice younger buyers into the three-pointed star fold. The turbo’d DI four is good for 229 lb-ft of torque which is decent grunt for around town. The peak HP number is 201 and while the C250 won’t win a lot of stoplight races it will be an attractive alternative to the non-premium four cylinder mid-sized sedans from Honda and Toyota. One wonders when a four cylinder BMW 3 series will make its way to the NA market.

Mercedes-Benz also has shown an SLS AMG roadster. Complementing the SLS AMG Coupe in the same manner as the 200SL roadster and coupe of the 1950s, Mercedes-Benz completes its offering of high end sports cars.

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Of further note, the S350 BlueTEC 4Matic was shown. This reintroduces diesel power to the S Class, a much revered segment of the Mercedes-Benz lineup. BMW’s 7 series, in this market, lacks a diesel offering. It will be interesting to see if the S350 BlueTEC rekindles enthusiasts passion for large, high-mileage, highway cruisers.

10 responses to “2011 NAIAS: 2012 Mercedes-Benz C-Class”

  1. Doug says:

    That C class is a really good design – i wish they wouldn’t bling it up so much.

  2. Hugo Becker says:

    Well, they didn’t show the roadster. Rather the SLS AMG E-CELL – a garish dayglo yellow (electric yellow?) coupe. The real treat at the Mercedes-Benz display was the 300 SL Coupe from the 1950s. Drop dead gorgeous car.

    I was a bit puzzled over the styling of the rear flanks of the E-class and at the back of the MB display was the F500 Mind concept shown at Tokyo in 2003. Hmmmm . . .

  3. vsonix says:

    Actually not a bad looker at all considering how horribly ugly most current Mercs are…

  4. T says:

    I should be impressed that you know or dont know your Mercedes-Benz’es. ;)

    The car on show is the pre-facelift C-Klasse , Although unveiled last night in a press conference I believe.
    The car will not be publically displayed until Geneva in March.

  5. Laszlo says:

    very attractive. a few weeks ago I stopped and looked at a C350 on the road. Dark gray metallic with black/silver wheels, it looked awesome.
    At the same time I don’t ever remember stopping to see a 328 or 330… hardly ever anything but the M models. its a shame. BMW’s are better driving cars but ugly. MB wins the style race lately. Well, always since Bungle created cars with BMW.
    The new 6 and Grand Tourismo is definitely a good direction, those will be hard to beat by MB or Audi.

  6. adnan says:

    screw the c-class, i want to see more of that cls amg!

  7. Otto says:

    The C Class shown in those photos is the previous model. The 2011 model has different head lamps and dashboard.

  8. tweer says:

    Aww bless, good on you mercedes, don’t go giving up just yet.

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