The Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe is carmaker's attempt to appeal to younger buyers and hopefully take out the BMW 1-Series. The discontinued but very popular CLK had a C-Class chassis for an E-Class price. But this time, Mercedes will do something very different. It will have a dedicated E-Class Coupe (and E-Class convertible) and for the first time, it will have a dedicated C-Class Coupe, which is believed to be a 2011 model.
The goal is to compete directly with the BMW 1-Series, which has been successful at attracting the younger buyers that have yet to make their first million. Of course, the high-volume and iconic 3-Series is being targeted but clearly, this car is a direct reaction to the 1-Series.
The 1-Series had been instrumental in proving the presence of a market for an affordable premium rear-wheel-drive coupe in the US. It can be recalled that both companies have attempted to enter this market but were only met with failure.
These were the 318ti hatchback from the mid-1990s and the C230 Kompressor hatchback of the early 2000s. Since the CL-Class and E-Class Coupes are hardtops (no window frames or fixed side glass), it's expected that Mercedes will continue the body style with the C-Class Coupe.
There are speculations that Mercedes will not be able to manage this with a lower price point and that the C-Class coupe will have fixed rear side glass like the 1 Series, 3 Series and Infiniti G37.
It is also believed that a new family of direct-injected DOHC V6s, including a 3.5-liter naturally aspirated version and a smaller unit with twin turbochargers designed to take on the turbocharged BMW 135i, will be used. The turbo engine is expected to generate more than 300hp.
There have been reports about a hybrid version of the C-Class Coupe, which would use a smaller naturally aspirated version of the V6. With regards to the AMG version, we heard that the naturally aspirated 6.2-liter V8 that powers the AMG fleet will be replaced in 2011 with a 5.5-liter twin-turbo V8. That switch includes the C63, which means the twin-turbo V8 will fit in the new C-Class Coupe.