KBB Editors' Overview
By KBB.com Editors - Updated Date: 8/20/2013
While the favorite ride of the rich and famous is undoubtedly a well-appointed S-Class, Mercedes-Benz builds a smaller luxury ride that is well within reach of most upper-middle-class Americans. Offered in coupe and sedan form, the 2014 Mercedes-Benz C-Class is more than just an entry ticket into an exclusive car club, it is a safe, reliable and luxurious mode of transportation respected for excellence. Be it the classy coupe, the sub-$40,000 4-cylinder turbo C250 or the pricey yet thrilling V8 powered C63 AMG, there is a C-Class to fit most tastes and budgets. While not as performance tuned as rivals from Cadillac and BMW, the C-Class offers a more compliant ride preferred by many luxury buyers.
You'll Like This Car If...
If you think the price of German engineering is out of reach, think again. The 2014 Mercedes-Benz C-Class costs about the same a nicely equipped Chrysler 300 or Nissan Maxima, plus when it comes time to move up the M-B ladder, the C-Class' strong resale will help with the down payment.
You May Not Like This Car If...
If rear seat accommodations are an important part of your buying decision, the C-Class can't match the legroom found in the Hyundai Genesis or Buick LaCrosse. Cost of ownership post-warranty is likely to be much pricier than with a simple family sedan such as the Honda Accord.
What's New for 2014
Changes for the 2014 Mercedes-Benz C-Class include the addition of 18-inch wheels to the C350 and a standard split-folding rear seat on all models. The sport-oriented C63 AMG receives a new Edition 507 package that bumps output to 507 horsepower and 450 lb-ft of torque.
During our test drive of the 2014 C250, it quickly became apparent that Mercedes-Benz puts as much care into assembling the C-Class as it does it most expense luxury sedan. Beyond its smooth and solid driving characteristics, the C-Class is loaded with features, including a stylish and modern interior long missing from past C-Class cars. Our C250 provided plenty of power provided we left the adjustable automatic transmission in Sport mode, and its handling, while not BMW 3 Series-like, was nevertheless controlled and responsive. The 7-speed automatic performed flawlessly, and while we love the touch-shift manual mode, we still wish a manual transmission were available on the coupes. In the automatic's Comfort setting, the C250's power is only acceptable for a car of this cost and caliber. Models with the 3.5-liter V6 are plenty potent even in Comfort mode. The exception to the smooth-riding C-Class is the C63 AMG, which is all about blistering acceleration and razor sharp cornering.
Standard on every 2014 Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Attention Assist can detect when a driver is drowsy and alerts him or her via visual and audible warnings. How does it do that? The car uses sensors that "observe driver behavior," based primarily on steering wheel movements.
A true leap forward in telematics, Mbrace2 is a Cloud-based subscription service that uses your smartphone to connect to the internet, allowing apps like Facebook, Google and Yelp to be online and at work whenever the car's in motion. Mbrace2 can even download system and map updates.
For vehicle details and pricing notes…