Road & Track
“Close your eyes and picture the most expensive luxury car you’ve ever been in.” You may have to shrink the image slightly, but Mercedes-Benz’s redesigned C400 should otherwise fit your daydream to a T. The German automaker’s new compact sedan is a “spectacular” machine all round, and the confidence it inspires begins when you step inside. “Every element of its cabin is a piece of modern art.”
“The new C is being called ‘the baby S-Class’ for obvious reasons.” Though still a compact, it has been lengthened four inches and now has the stretched-out, contoured flanks and “long, laid-back greenhouse” of its executive-class sibling. Built atop a new aluminum-hybrid body shell and available with air suspension, it has a hushed, stately feel on the road but can be “an exceptionally sporty luxury sedan” when pushed.
“It left us wondering who will bother to upgrade to the midsize E-Class.” The all-wheel drive C is only a touch smaller, and it offers a far nicer cabin as well as the very latest in stability, traction, and collision-avoidance systems. But maybe the company’s rivals should worry more—“because this Benz is a huge step forward in the history of the C-Class, one that might finally put it in a position to dominate.”