The German carmaker is ready to introduce two plug-in hybrids to its facelifted C-class line-up as part of plans for an extended range of EQ-Power-badged models. The new EQ-Power system increases the output of the electric motor by 40hp over that used by the existing four-year-old 300h to 122hp.
The two new hybrids’ electric range will extend to more than 30.6km, thanks to the lithium-ion battery capacity rising from 6.4kWh to 13.8kWh. The electrified drivetrains are based around a new hybrid system. It operates in tandem with a four-cylinder petrol engine in the new C300e and a four-cylinder diesel engine in the C 300de. Mercedes has remained tight-lipped about the combined system outputs for the new C 300e and C300de. However, the C 330e’s turbo 2.0-litre engine is claimed to deliver 211hp and the C300de’s turbo 2.0-litre engine 194hp.
The revisions include a number of subtle styling upgrades including re-profiled bumpers with added chrome highlights, new headlights and a new diamond-pattern grille insert for AMG Line models. Inside, the facelifted C-class retains the basic dashboard design of the outgoing model and gets updated analogue instruments and a 7.0-inch infotainment display.
Optional equipment includes a new 12.3-inch high-definition digital instrument display offering three themes (Classic, Sport and Progressive), a revised multi-function steering wheel with touch-control pads, a 10.25-inch free-standing infotainment display and a touchpad controller within a reworked centre console. The C-class’ Comand infotainment system has been upgraded to the same standard as that used by the facelifted S-class. However, it forgoes the touchscreen control and connectivity functions of the more advanced system present in the new A-class.
The C-class also gets optional smartphone integration supporting Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink. It is also outfitted with a wireless charging pad. The line-up will be offered with new remote parking pilot and driving assistance package plus systems.
The new line-up will have three diesel models: the 150hp C 200d, 195hp C 220d and 244hp C 300d. Each runs Mercedes’ latest 2.0-litre, four-cylinder diesel engine. Three petrol models feature in the line-up: the C 180, C 200 and C 300. The C 180 uses a 1.6-litre turbo engine that produces 156hp in the SLC 180. The C 200 and C 300 both have Mercedes’ new four-cylinder petrol engine.
In the C 200 – a mild hybrid with EQ-Boost badging – the engine delivers a nominal 191hp, with an added 17hp available on kickdown when the alternator acts as an electric motor to boost performance. The C 300 gets a higher state of tune at 244hp, but no electric assistance.
The facelifted C-class line-up will make its public debut in sedan and estate body styles at the Geneva motor show in March. They will be sold in three trim levels – SE, Sport and AMG Line – and Mercedes says the new entry-level SE spec will be higher than today’s.
Mercedes currently sells the previous C-class in India with prices ranging between Rs 41.94 lakh to Rs 46.40 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi). There is no word on when this facelift will arrive in India and if the hybrid tech will come along with it.