2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Cabriolet becomes official

Article by Andrew Christian, on March 3, 2016

Mercedes-Benz unveiled the first of its convertible (cabriolet) models based on the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, which according to Mercedes offers a modern luxurious but youthful ambiance. Optional to this cabriolet is the AIRCAP automatic draught stop system and AIRSCARF neck-level heating, which should afford its driver comfortable driving all-year round.

In addition, powering the new convertible is a variety of engine options between 115 and 270 kW (156 to 367 hp) with a suspension system tuned for a dynamic, sporty and agile handling with and optional AIRMATIC air suspension.

Standard to all engine variants will be the new 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission while a proven assistance system and hi-tech infotainment system make driving the cabriolet very convenient.

Exterior Design

2017 Mercedes C-Class Cabriolet will be the luxury carmaker’s entry level cabriolet offering. As a Mercedes, it has that distinctly Mercedes look that defines the brand’s contemporary luxury. However, the new cabriolet exhibits that fresh youthful character coupled with a sporty stance.

The cabriolet’s profile shows the strong connection to that of the C-Class Coupe, which is basically identical to the cabriolet especially with the top up. It features a stunning front with its diamond radiator grille, LED High Performance headlamps, long bonnet and high beltline.

The cabriolet’s tightly extended roof and glass windows flow seamlessly into the equally stunning rear; a sporty stance enhanced with the wide shoulders and flat LED tail lights. The car offers year round practicality with its spacious boot with a capacity of 285 liters with the roof open and 360 liters with the roof attached.

The sides have that dropping line extending over the rear wheel arch, a distinct Mercedes styling detail. The cabriolet’s sporty character is emphasized by its 15 millimetre lower suspension compared to the standard C-Class and is further accentuated with the 17-inch standard tyres. The car is likewise aerodynamically efficient with a cd value of 0.28.

Interior Design

Although the cabriolet is based from the C-Class Saloon, its interior offers a fresher, youthful ambience. The modern characteristic of the interior that speaks sportiness and lifestyle is achieved by the choice of high-grade quality materials.

The interior has heat reflecting leather with an optional five colour shades available, curved switch in matt silver chrome in the centre console that controls the fully automatic roof.

The seats have muscular side bolsters that is also offered in the Coupe, head restraints and the optional AIRSCARF neck-level heating. The individual rear seats can be completely folded down when not in use and offers additional storage space as well – a handy feature in everyday driving.

Powertrain

Numerous powerful and efficient engine options are available for the cabriolet. They also come with the ECO start/stop function making frequent stop/start driving more manageable. In addition, extensive 4MATIC range ensures year round performance driving possible.

These are all compliant with the Euro 6 emissions standard. A total of six petrol engine options are available for the Cabriolet. Outputs vary from the 1.6 litre four-cylinder unit in the C 180 with 115 kW output (156 hp) to the 3.0 litre six-cylinder engine in the Mercedes-AMG C43 4MATIC Cabriolet (270 kW/367 hp).

The C 200 is available as an option for the 4MATIC all-wheel drive. For the diesel models, a four-cylinder engine with a 125 kW output (170 hp) comes with the C 220d and the 150 kW (204 hp) for the C250d.

Both are equipped with the eco-friendly SCR technology (Selective Catalytic Reduction). MATIC is available for the C 220 d as well. All engines are coupled with the new 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission.

Stylish exterior

Without the roof, the design harmony between interior and exterior becomes apparent and could only come from the meticulous design process the model underwent.

For example, high-grade details like a chrome trim on A-pillar and windshield create some sort of visual border, outlining the car from its roof elegantly.

High quality soft top fabric

The cabriolet fabric soft top is fully automatic and come in black as standard but with an option for a multilayered top that are done in dark blue, dark brown, dark red or black. The top also acts as some form of sound insulator against the wind or driving noise.

This is more evidently observed when one can clearly hear all conversations in the car even at high speeds. The top acts as a cocoon providing climate comfort and quieter ride.

Individual highlights

Although the Cabriolet comes with an impressive equipment specification as standard, further customization is possible. There are 13 upholstery variants, seven trim variants, four soft-top colours and twelve paint finishes.

In addition, the roof liner of the soft top can be customized and includes black, porcelain and crystal grey as the possible choices. Trim elements are done in sporty aluminium, carbon fibre or glass fibre with open-pore wood available in black or brown.

As an alternative to the regular Mercedes C-Class cabriolet, the AMG variant differs in its exterior features that include special bumpers and sills, AMG bodystyling, diamond radiator grille with pins in chrome as well as the highly-visible 18-inch AMG light-alloy wheels.

Inside, the AMG variant features the multifunction steering wheel with flattened bottom section and AMG sports pedals. During the market launch, an Edition 1 is set to be available for a limited time.

Enjoyable Summer Driving

The main reasons customers opt for a cabriolet is the ability to drive around with the top down in absolute freedom. For this reason, Mercedes Benz decided to offer as an option for the C-Class cabriolet the AIRCAP and AIRSCARF to make open air driving more comfortable even at low temperatures.

These features are likewise available in the higher end models: the E and S-class Cabriolets. The electric AIRCAP draught stop system is integrated into the roof frame inconspicuously and is paired with an electric draught stop behind the rear seats as well.

This reduces air turbulence at the touch of a button which forms a bubble of relative quiet inside the car, making normal conversation possible. Partnering it is the AIRSCARF a neck level heating for the front seats.

These two systems form the Cabriolet Comfort package, making it more comfortable to travel with an open top year round. In lieu of this, there is another option of retrofitted manual folding draught stop behind the front seats but is seen as effective in the fronts seats only.

AMG version - Mercedes-AMG C43 4Matic Cabriolet

The new Mercedes –AMG C43 4MATIC Cabriolet has the same dropping line seen in the basic model. However, its distinct AMG design and specifid light-alloy wheels highlight its sportier look and performance.

For the Mercedes-AMG C 43 4MATIC Cabriolet, additional details in the interior set it apart that are consistent with the performance character it was designed for. For example, a multifunction sports steering wheel in black leather that features a flattened bottom section with red stitching is featured for the AMG cabriolet variant.

Press Release

The new C-Class Cabriolet: Unlimited opening times

Mercedes-Benz is launching into the open-air season with the first cabriolet based on the C-Class, thereby rounding off its range of cabriolets with a classic fabric soft top. The new cabriolet's design interprets modern luxury with a youthful touch. Featuring plenty of high-quality details, its distinctive character is most apparent when the top is down. The cabriolet is optionally available with the AIRCAP automatic draught stop system and AIRSCARF neck-level heating – for exceptional comfort during open-top driving 365 days a year. Efficient, powerful engines delivering between 115 and 270 kW (156 to 367 hp) and a suspension designed for dynamics (with optional AIRMATIC air suspension) ensure sportily agile handling. The new 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission is available for all engine variants. Also on board: proven assistance systems and state-of-the-art infotainment. The new C-Class Cabriolet launches in summer 2016.

"Our new C-Class Cabriolet is the entry into the world of premium cabriolets from Mercedes-Benz. Sporty and youthful in character and styling, it offers unadulterated open-air driving pleasure all year round," says Prof. Dr Thomas Weber, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and responsible for Group Research and Mercedes-Benz Cars Development.

Sporty and youthful
As the new entry-level model into the cabriolet world of Mercedes-Benz, the C‑Class Cabriolet is also a consistent embodiment of the Mercedes-Benz design philosophy: sensual purity as the definition of contemporary luxury. It exhibits an independence of character with a visibly sporty expression and youthfully fresh appeal.

With its top up, the profile of the new two-door cabriolet resembles that of the C‑Class Coupé with virtually identical basic dimensions: with a striking front end featuring a diamond radiator grille, LED High Performance headlamps, long bonnet and high beltline. Its tightly stretched soft top with glass window transitions harmoniously into the distinctly styled rear end, which has a highly sporty look with its wide shoulders and flat LED tail lights. With a capacity of 360 litres (285 litres with the roof open), the boot is capable of holding an exceptional amount of luggage for a cabriolet, thus offering high everyday practicality.

Dimensions in millimetres

At the sides, an elongated dropping line extending over the rear wheel arch lends an emphasis typical of Mercedes-Benz design. Thanks to its 15 millimetre lower suspension as standard compared with the Saloon, the vehicle already gives a sporty impression with its 17-inch standard tyres, underlining the sporty character of the Cabriolet, which excels aerodynamically with a cd value of 0.28.
AMG version with distinct looks

The same dropping line is taken up by the new Mercedes-AMG C 43 4MATIC Cabriolet which, however, has an even sportier look with its distinct AMG design and specific light-alloy wheels. It thus underscores the progressive nature and performance of the brand.

Exterior and interior from the same mould

With the roof open, the meticulously coordinated harmony between exterior and interior design becomes apparent. High-grade details include chrome trim on A‑pillar and windscreen as well as a beltline moulding, which extends as far as the soft-top compartment, which it borders with a broad chrome trim.

Premium-class fabric soft top

The fully automatic classic cabriolet fabric soft top comes in black in the basic variant or is optionally available with a multi-layer acoustic soft top in dark brown, dark blue, dark red or black. It significantly reduces the wind/driving noise. This is made noticeable in the form of improved speech intelligibility, including at high speeds, and better insulation from disruptive ambient noise. The acoustic soft top thus offers optimal climate comfort and quiet-running characteristics.

Based on the S-Class Cabriolet, the soft top also meets high quality standards in terms of durability and function. It can be opened and closed in less than 20 seconds up to a speed of 50 km/h. After opening, it folds down quietly and carefully and is stored in the soft-top compartment in the boot. In terms of its shape and colour, the cover of the soft-top compartment is an integral part of the interior and is made of the same material as the beltline.

Interior – modernity and lifestyle

The occupants enjoy an ambience that, while based on the interior of the C-Class Saloon, offers a fresh interpretation with typical cabriolet features. Especially high-grade materials and build quality give the interior a modern feel of sportiness and lifestyle. The equipment includes heat-reflecting leather in a total of five colour shades (optional) as well as a curved switch in matt silver chrome in the centre console for opening and closing the fully automatic cabriolet soft top. Based on the Coupé, the sport seats feature an integral look with muscular side bolsters and organically integrated head restraints as well as optional AIRSCARF neck-level heating. Automatic belt extenders as standard help the occupants with buckling up.

The rear seats are in the form of individual seats. Their backrests offer a through-loading feature, can be split 50:50 for high everyday practicality and can be completely folded down.

AMG with special details

The interior of the Mercedes-AMG C 43 4MATIC Cabriolet reinforces the consistently dynamic bias of the performance brand with numerous specially designed details. Ideal for a committed driving style, the multifunction sports steering wheel in black leather features a flattened bottom section and red contrasting topstitching, and sits perfectly in the hand.

Individual highlights

The Cabriolet already comes as standard with a high equipment specification, which is augmented by a wide range of individualisation options (some examples: 13 upholstery variants, such as designo Bengal red / black, seven trim variants, four soft-top colours, twelve paint finishes – including a matt finish, leather-covered instrument panel). The roof liner of the soft top is available in black, porcelain and crystal grey. Numerous trim elements in sporty aluminium, carbon fibre or glass fibre are complemented by authentic open-pore wood species in shades of brown and black.
The AMG Line is available as an alternative to underline the dynamism of the Cabriolet. It differs by virtue of exterior features such as special bumpers and sills with AMG bodystyling, a diamond radiator grille with pins in chrome and 18-inch AMG light-alloy wheels. In the interior, the AMG Line comes with sporty, exclusive highlights, including a multifunction sports steering wheel with flattened bottom section as well as AMG sports pedals.

At the market launch an Edition 1 will be available for a limited time. With a host of perfectly coordinated equipment lines, it combines sportiness with lifestyle, thus perfectly fitting with the sporty-modern look of the new cabriolet.

Summer is included

Customers opting for a cabriolet like to drive as often as possible with the top down. The fact that, also in the C-Class Cabriolet – as in the E- and S-Class Cabriolets – the occupants can enjoy maximum open-air comfort is made possible by AIRCAP and AIRSCARF, which make the joys of fresh air pleasant even at low temperatures.

Inconspicuously integrated into the roof frame, the electric AIRCAP draught stop system was specially developed for Mercedes-Benz cabriolets and is coupled to an electric draught stop behind the rear seats, which reduces the interior turbulence also for the rear passengers at the press of a button. AIRCAP is part of the Cabriolet Comfort package, which also includes AIRSCARF neck-level heating for the driver and front passenger. The combination of these two systems extends the open-top season to the entire year.

Alternatively, there is also the option of a retrofitted manual folding draught stop behind the front seats. This noticeably stops draughts in the front seats.

Suspension: sportily agile and comfortable

The suspension offers a high level of comfort with low road roar and tyre vibration characteristics while ensuring agile driving dynamics – the basis for driving enjoyment. The suspension on the Cabriolet, which is 15 millimetres lower in comparison with the Saloon, comes as standard with steel springs with a selective damping system. An optional sports suspension with firmer springing and damping, including the Sports Direct-Steer system, makes for even more agile handling.

Riding on air

The Cabriolet is optionally available with AIRMATIC air suspension. Its electronically controlled, continuously adjustable damping on the front and rear axles ensures low road roar and tyre vibration characteristics in every situation.

DYNAMIC SELECT – standard with AIRMATIC and optionally available with a steel suspension – allows the driver to choose their desired setting: sporty, comfortable or fuel-efficient. To this end, the driver can select one of five transmission modes using the DYNAMIC SELECT switch: "ECO", "Comfort", "Sport", "Sport Plus" and "Individual". Selecting "Individual" allows the driver to customise the vehicle settings to suit their personal preferences.

Dynamic: 4 and 6-cylinder engines and, for the first time, 4MATIC

Powerful and efficient petrol and diesel engines with ECO start/stop function and an extensive 4MATIC range make for sporty performance and driving pleasure all year round. All are compliant with the Euro 6 emissions standard.

Six petrol engines are available for the Cabriolet. The range of outputs extends from the 1.6-litre four-cylinder unit in the C 180 rated at 115 kW (156 hp) to the 3.0-litre six-cylinder engine in the Mercedes-AMG C 43 4MATIC Cabriolet (270 kW/367 hp). The C 200 is optionally available with 4MATIC all-wheel drive.

The diesel models are powered by a four-cylinder engine delivering 125 kW (170 hp) in the C 220 d or 150 kW (204 hp) in the C 250 d and are equipped with eco-friendly SCR technology (Selective Catalytic Reduction) for exhaust aftertreatment. 4MATIC is available for the C 220 d.

The new 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission can be ordered for all engine variants.

Light and safe bodyshell

In a cabriolet, the lack of a roof often results in reduced body stiffness. This fact was taken into consideration by the designers in developing the C-Class Saloon. This allowed them to adapt the bodyshell at the front end and on the floor to meet the particular needs of the Cabriolet. Consequently, this model, too, features an exemplary stiff design of the kind required for high driving dynamics.
The Coupé's intelligent lightweight construction with a high proportion of aluminium was retained - among others, the wings, bonnet and boot lid are made of light alloy. The Cabriolet not only meets all current national and international laws, but also all rating requirements as well as the more stringent internal Mercedes-Benz safety requirements, which are based on what actually happens in a real-world accident.

Safe semi-autonomous driving to reduce stress

There are many safety and assistance systems based on the Mercedes-Benz Intelligent Drive concept to choose from. ATTENTION ASSIST with adjustable sensitivity, which can warn the driver of inattentiveness and drowsiness, is included as standard. Further standard equipment includes COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST PLUS. In addition to a visual proximity warning and an additional audible collision warning, it includes Adaptive Brake Assist, which can help prevent collisions by boosting the brake pressure to suit the situation. When a danger of collision persists and the driver fails to respond, the system is able to carry out autonomous braking at speeds of up to 200 km/h, thereby reducing the severity of collisions with slower or stationary vehicles or, in the best-case scenario, even avoiding a collision altogether. At speeds of up to 50 km/h, the system also brakes in response to stationary vehicles and is thus able to help prevent rear-end collisions at up to 40 km/h.

The optionally available Driving Assistance package includes additional assistance systems that have been significantly extended in terms of their functions. As part of the Intelligent Drive concept, these merge data from various sensor technologies, such as radar sensors and stereo camera, and thus make for significantly enhanced safety and comfort. These functions include for example DISTRONIC PLUS with Steering Assist and Stop&Go Pilot or the PRE-SAFE® Brake with pedestrian detection plus the Brake Assist BAS PLUS, which also offers situation-adaptive brake boosting if there is a risk of collision from crossing traffic. A further function of the Driving Assistance package is Active Lane Keeping Assist, which is capable of preventing unintentional lane departure by means of one-sided, lane-correcting application of the brakes. The system intervenes if the driver crosses a solid lane marking and can assist even in the case of discontinuous lane markings if there is a risk of collision with a vehicle in the adjacent lane.

The multiplicity of assistance systems also includes a Parking Assist for semi-automated parking; a 360° camera for assistance during parking and manoeuvring; a camera and navigation-based Traffic Sign Assist with wrong-way warning function as well as Adaptive Highbeam Assist Plus, which allows continuous high beam by selectively blanking out other vehicles from the high-beam light cone.

Safe protection

In an accident, optimal protection is afforded by the high structural safety of the body as well as by the restraint systems, especially the comprehensive complement of airbags.

These include:

  • adaptive front airbags for driver and front passenger
  • a kneebag on the driver's side
  • thorax/pelvis bags for driver and front passenger
  • windowbags integrated in the top edges of the front door panels

The roll-over protection system is specific to the Cabriolet. It consists of two cartridges that are fully retracted behind the rear seats and therefore invisible. If a roll-over is imminent, these cartridges are pyrotechnically fired, whereupon they shoot out to provide a survival space together with the A-pillar.

Sensitive climate control for open-air driving

Specially developed for cabriolets, the climate control system responds to whether the vehicle is being driven with the roof up or down. With the roof closed, the system performs in the same way as in the Coupé. With the soft top down, the climate control system adapts by, for example, blowing warmer air onto the driver's hands on the steering wheel and deactivating the air recirculation function. The special adjustments for open-top driving make allowance for whether cooling or heating is required and respond sensitively to the transition zones in between.

Vibrant infotainment experience

Intuitive operation with animations and visual effects is offered by the infotainment system. Frontbass ensures a listening experience almost on a par with a concert hall – especially if the optionally available Burmester® sound system has been specified. The Frontbass system uses the space within the cross-member and side member in the body structure as a resonance chamber for the bass speakers.

The navigation system, which supplies the driver with precise traffic information in real time (Live Traffic Information), processes its contents interactively. Its features include an animated compass and a "Drive Show" with information for passengers similar to the on-screen presentations on an airliner.

Extensive networking even in the basic version

A Bluetooth®-compatible mobile phone with data option is all it takes to give the Audio 20 system internet capability. This allows internet surfing without restriction when the vehicle is stationary. Mercedes-Benz apps can be used while driving. Audio and video playback is possible from various sources.

The alternatively available COMAND Online system provides not only a larger display with a resolution of 960 x 540 pixels, but it also optionally allows digital TV/radio reception, for example, while offering fast hard-drive navigation, integral WiFi hotspot functionality and LINGUATRONIC voice control as well as many other features.

The basic Audio 20 system as well as Audio 20 CD and COMAND Online all offer basic telephony as standard, which links up a mobile phone to the vehicle via a standardised Bluetooth® interface.

Mercedes me connect: connected with the car

Like other models, the new C-Class Cabriolet comes with an extensive range of free Standard Services and Remote Online Services as part of the "Mercedes me connect" package. Standard Services include automatic emergency call, Accident Recovery as well as breakdown assistance and after-sales service. The Remote Online services make it possible at any time and from anywhere to access vehicle information such as the status of windows and doors, mileage, tyre pressures and other diagnostic data. There is also a Vehicle Tracker function as well as remote door locking and unlocking.

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