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Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate 2008 Review

The C-Class Estate wagon is good for the fuel conscious.
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The new C-Class follows last week’s introduction of the new Estate (wagon) in three variants: C200K, 220CDi and 63AMG.

The compact Benz carry-all arrives just as the C-Class rides high on a number of best car awards and sales head north.

It’s an impressive car in any form.

Even the entry level model looks good, drives well and has the all important three-pointed star on the bonnet.

The fact Mercedes-Benz has been able to keep the price static for a decade would also help move metal.

It’s essentially the same as the sedan underneath and back to the windscreen.

After that the Estate is characteristically a wagon with a one-piece tophinged tailgate and long load space that can be expanded when the rear seats are folded.

Mercedes-Benz doesn’t have a small SUV in this segment so the wagon has to cover quite a few bases and fend off plenty of competition from other all-wheel drive competitors.

Benz has put a more practical focus on this newcomer, creating space in the back to fit in more stuff.

It is available in three grades – classic, elegance and avantgarde with varying levels of standard equipment and exterior appearance.

Like the sedan, the avantgarde version is the best looker thanks to its more aggressive front end styling and sporty body add-ons.

The 200K runs a 135kW/250Nm supercharged four-cylinder petrol engine, the 220CDi is a 125kW/400Nm common rail turbo diesel and the 63AMG is a 6.2-litre, 336kW/600Nm petrol V8.

Performance is not an issue with any of the variants, certainly not the 63AMG.

Drive is to the rear wheels and the two fours have a five-speed auto with sequential change mode, while the AMG has a seven-speed auto, also with sequential mode.

Fuel economy is impressive on the two fours with the 200K good for 8.3 litres/100km and the 220CDi capable of a mere 6.2 litres/100km.

Prices start at $58,990 for the 200K rising to $141,300 for the wicked 63AMG variant which will arrive here in time.

The cars are five-seaters offering plenty of passenger room and a swag of luxury goodies, including leather upholstery, premium audio, climate control and several electronic goodies.

Plenty of options are offered to tailor the vehicles, but even with a standard trim, all variants are well equipped.

We took the C200K estate variant for a drive last week and for all intents and purposes it felt just like the sedan, offering sporty performance and handling and plenty of feel for the driver.

It is compact enough to fit into tight places, but it’s also roomy inside for four adults.

Five would be a squeeze.

The load space is big and there’s a full-size spare under the floor.

A cargo cover is also provided to keep luggage from view.

Bluetooth technology has been installed and there is a handy Speedtronic cruise control system.

The interior on our test car was a little dull in grey on grey tones, but other colours are available.

The dash layout is functional and attractive with a large television monitor in the middle.

It remains hidden when not in use.

All variants are fitted with comprehensive safety equipment including stability control, multiple air bags and hill-start assist, which means you don’t have to keep your foot on the brake while stopped on hills.

We also like the idea of what Benz had called Pre-safe.

It readies systems for maximum protection in an imminent crash.


Pricing guides

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Range and Specs

C230 Evolution 2.5L, ULP, 5 SP AUTO $11,700 – 17,160 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class 2008 C230 Evolution Pricing and Specs
C230 Evolution AMG 2.5L, ULP, 5 SP AUTO $12,700 – 18,370 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class 2008 C230 Evolution AMG Pricing and Specs
C200 Kompressor 1.8L, ULP, 5 SP AUTO $9,600 – 14,520 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class 2008 C200 Kompressor Pricing and Specs
C180 Kompressor Evolution 1.8L, ULP, 5 SP AUTO $9,300 – 13,970 2008 Mercedes-Benz C-Class 2008 C180 Kompressor Evolution Pricing and Specs
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