The 2022 model-year will bring a new generation of C-Class at Mercedes-Benz, and for the occasion, we're going to see a major change in philosophy. Indeed, we will only find 4-cylinder engines under the hood. No more V6 or V8 symphonies.
Currently, the C-Class is offered with a 4-cylinder turbocharged engine as standard, but 3.0L V6 and 4-litre V8 engines, also benefiting from a turbocharger, are also available. In the latter case, this guttural-sounding powerplant presently propels the family's ultimate sporty variant, the C 63 S AMG.
If that model is on your shopping list, better make haste, because it's about to become a rare commodity on the market.
Car and Driver magazine spoke with Christian Früh, Chief Engineer of the 2022 C-Class, to find out how the company plans to develop the new version of its popular sedan. While the platform will remain rear-wheel-drive based, the V6 and V8 powertrains of the AMG variants will be abandoned in favor of 4-cylinder hybrid systems. According to the publication, the new C 63, despite the loss of half of its cylinders, will still offer more than 500 hp.
The power will be there, but we'll clearly miss the sound and unique thrust supplied by the V8 engine. I was at the launch of the model in 2015 and we were given the opportunity to test drive it on the Algarve circuit in Portugal. Let's just say that the experience was memorable.
Mercedes-Benz will also abandon the manual transmission that was always offered with some variants in Europe. That's significant, considering that this type of transmission is still quite popular on the Old Continent. It doesn't change anything here, as all models get the company's 9-speed automatic transmission, currently and in 2022.
The car will also be equipped with a huge touchpad on the centre console and all the latest technologies that the automaker has to offer, much as we saw with the recently introduced S-Class.
The new C-Class is expected to hit the market in the first quarter of this year, with sales expected to begin in late 2021.