What are they like inside?
Much of a coupe’s charm comes from the sense of occasion you feel when sliding behind the wheel, and in this regard the Mercedes C-Class Coupe has the edge. Its interior features an eclectic mix of black ash wood and brushed aluminium trim, while our car was made even swankier by the optional (£400) leather-effect dashboard finish. Mind you, the C-Class Coupe is let down slightly by flimsy-feeling air vents and a centre console that emits unseemly squeaks when you prod it. The interior of the BMW 4 Series might look a little ordinary by comparison, but it feels more sturdily assembled.
The 4 Series also has the better infotainment system, aside from its slightly smaller screen. It’s much easier to use than the Mercedes’ system, which can sometimes be so unfathomable that you need to resort to the owner’s manual. This is true no matter whether you stick with the standard Garmin-based system or pay an extra £2995 for the more sophisticated Comand system featured on our test car.
Despite having pedals that are offset slightly too far to the right, both cars have excellent driving positions, with low-slung sports seats that hug you tightly at the sides. However, it’s certainly easier to get comfortable in the C-Class Coupe, thanks to its standard electric seats with adjustable lumbar support. If you want fully electric seat adjustment on the 4 Series you’ll need to find an extra £945, although it does come with adjustable side bolsters as standard, as well as a seatbelt extender that hands you your belt when you get in the car.
Up front, both cars have plenty of space for taller adults, although if you’re much more than six feet tall you’ll want to avoid the C-Class Coupe's head room-robbing optional (£900) panoramic roof.
Both cars have two seats in the back, but the 4 Series' will accommodate a couple of adults in reasonable comfort. By contrast, the C-Class Coupe’s tighter rear head room means adults won’t be as comfortable on long journeys. The 4 Series has a slightly bigger and better-shaped boot, too. However, the C-Class Coupe comes with split-folding rear seats and a ski hatch, which, again, cost extra on the BMW.
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