The current W204 C-Class was launched in 2007 and relaunched last year with a facelift. The update enhanced the saloon’s handsome appearance with a more contoured silhouette and AMG C63-inspired exterior lights, while also refining the dashboard design, instrument cluster and steering wheel.
More features were added, too, such as extra cupholders, more storage compartments and a convenient Hold function for the brakes. At the same time, a significant improvement in cabin insulation makes for a quieter and more comfortable ride.
But the 1.6-litre C180 continued to use the supercharged Kompressor engine and 5-speed automatic while its other siblings were given energetic CGI turbocharged engines with smooth 7G-Tronic transmissions. Now, finally, even the “smallest” C-Class comes equipped with these goodies.
The acceleration of the new 1.6 CGI C180 is so much more earnest and effortless than before, making it a real pleasure to drive. It is not only quicker than the superseded 1.6 Kompressor, but also faster than the 1.8 turbo C180. Gone is the slightly strangulated whine, which has been replaced by a boomier and more confident exhaust note.
With the introduction of this “long time coming” newcomer, the supercharged 1.6-litre model will no longer be offered, and neither will the turbocharged 156bhp 1.8. This means that we no longer have to decipher the specs of all the “C180” variants you see on the roads sporting different badging.
Now, there is just one Merc C180 – the perfect one, in my opinion.
This story was first published in the November 2012 issue of Torque.
2012 Mercedes-Benz C180 1.6 (A)
ENGINE 1595cc, 16-valves, inline-4, turbocharged
MAX POWER 156bhp at 5300rpm
MAX TORQUE 250Nm at 1250-4000rpm
GEARBOX 7-speed dual-clutch with manual select
0-100KM/H 8.4 seconds
TOP SPEED 220km/h
CONSUMPTION 15.9km/L (combined)