We think that whomever coined the phrase "when you buy a BMW you do it for the way its engine sounds and a Mercedes-Benz for the way its door sounds upon closing it" was a pretty cool dude. That's because he was pretty much dead on with this saying.
The second we closed the doors for the first time in our test car, the most-memorable "Mercedes-thunk" told us we were in a safe car. We're not exaggerating, you can actually feel the safety through the car's pores, or it this case, by the sound its doors make when you close them. The same can be said about the interior design, since it closely follows the lines of the exterior.
Sure, some critics might say that there's an oddly large amount of grey plastic in there, which for a Mercedes is saying something, but every material inside is soft and/or very touch friendly. The overall look doesn't do it justice since the ambiance inside is that of a truly premium car, no matter how few premium gadgets or toys you can find inside.
The attention to detail can be most seen/felt in the overall ergonomics and the quality of the most touched bits in the car. The iDrive-like Comand control-knob is surprisingly easy to use and it's made of aluminium, while the door-levers both inside and out feel like they could provide the same feel after a million uses. The overall feel of the (slightly too-large) steering wheel filled with helpful buttons is also top notch, while the gear shift knob is one of the most ergonomic in this class, as usual.
Even though it wasn't equipped with the optional navigation and audio system, our C-Klasse was fitted with a color LCD display, hidden in the upper side of the center console and controlled by the Comand controller. Since we can't go ahead and only discuss the best bits about our test car's interior, we should also specify its downsides. Completely opposite to the general trend in the last couple of decades, Mercedes hasn't increased the size of its C and E-Klasse that much over the years. For some, that's a good thing, but for people with long legs, it isn't.
To put it short, we don't think it's the same situation with the E, but the C-Klasse is pretty cramped for a Mercedes. You won't get sore knees from seating in the rear for longer periods, but you won't be able to fit five fully-grown men in the car without sacrificing some comfort either. After also testing the 3-Series and the A4, we'd say that the C-Klasse suffers the most at the interior space chapter.
On the good side, the luggage compartment is more than adequately-sized, with a volume of no less than 475 liters (16.8 cubic feet) at your disposal. Plus, the opening is very good and you can also increase its volume by folding the rear seat flat, in a 60:40 percentage. Sadly, the rear-folding seat is optional (!?!) and our car wasn't fitted with it, so no points for that.Continue reading