What is it
A sleeker, three-door version of the recently revamped C-Class saloon. This is Mercedes’ answer to the Audi and BMW 3 Series Coupe.
What’s it like to drive?
In all, for a car that starts at more than £30,000, rather disappointing. All C-Class Coupes come in AMG Sport Edition 125 trim, with suspension that’s stiffened and lowered compared with an equivalent SE or Elegance saloon. It treads a fine line between comfort and sportiness, and not always successfully.
Body control is strong. This, and plentiful grip, mean the C-Class Coupe handles well. The ride is fidgety, though. Curiously, it’s more of an issue at motorway speed, where it never really settles. Unlike most Mercedes’, the C-Class Coupe isn’t a particularly relaxed cruiser.
The steering isn’t entirely satisfying, either. It reacts quickly enough and demands little effort, but it has a light, insubstantial feel that’s at odds with the car’ sporty character and trim.
We drove a 350 CGI Blue Efficiency, which has a 302bhp, 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine. There’s plenty of pace, but you need to be prepared to work it fairly hard, because peak power and torque don’t arrive until 6500rpm and 3500rpm respectively. The standard seven-speed automatic gearbox can be reticent at times, too, but you can overcome this by using the manual shift paddles behind the steering wheel.
Refinement is generally good. It’s a shame the engine doesn’t sound more characterful sound, though, and that the stop-start system sometimes makes an unseemly noise as it kicks the engine back into life when you pull away.
What’s it like inside?
Much like a C-Class saloon, which is both a good and a bad thing. The updated C-Class’s cabin is much better than the previous car’; it’s solidly built and mostly classy. Bar bespoke seats and upgraded trim, though, there’s little to distinguish the Coupe’s cabin from that of an entry-level C-Class saloon. It’s good enough, but doesn’t feel particularly special.
Up front, there’s lots of head- and legroom. The rear seats are usable, if not massively comfortable for adults, and headroom is rather tight. The boot is large and well shaped.
Should I buy one?
Prices are around £1600 higher than for the equivalent saloon, but AMG Sport Edition 125 trim includes sat-nav. The C180 Blue Efficiency version kicks things off at £30,720, while the £38,140 C350 Blue Efficiency sits at the top end of the range. Our test car included around £11,000 of options, taking it to nearly £50,000. For that kind of money, the C-Class Coupe just doesn’t feel special enough. Cheaper models make more sense, but we can’t help thinking you’d be better off with either a BMW 3 Series Coupe or Mercedes’ own E-Class Coupe, which is larger, arguably more desirable and, model-for-model, costs only around £2000 more.
BMW 3 Series Coupe
Our reviews are based on hard data and thorough testing in the real world.
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