2018 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Review
2018 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Review
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Edmunds' Expert Review
Travis Langness has worked in the automotive industry since 2011. He has written thousands of car-related articles and tested and reviewed hundreds of vehicles over the course of his career.
- Interior is impeccably crafted
- Many available cutting-edge features
- Exterior styling turns heads everywhere
- Multiple high-horsepower powertrains available
- Clumsy touchpad infotainment interface
- Stiff standard suspension
There have been some changes to standard and optional equipment across the C-Class lineup, and Mercedes has simplified some options packages and stand-alone options. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are now available in the C-Class, too. A plug-in hybrid, the C350e, is essentially new, though it technically debuted very late in the 2017 model year. Finally, the base C300 now has a nine-speed automatic transmission instead of last year's seven-speed auto.
There was a time when you could call the Mercedes-Benz C-Class an entry-level luxury vehicle. But to do so for 2018 would be a bit of a disservice. First of all, the CLA-Class is technically Mercedes' entry-level sedan now. But more importantly, the C-Class is more impressive than the words "entry-level" would lead you to believe. It comes with an impeccably built interior, high-quality materials inside and out, upgrading and customizing options galore, and a variety of engine choices.
Calculate my fuel costs
Cost to DriveCost to drive estimates for the 2018 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C 300 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 9A) and comparison vehicles are based on 15,000 miles per year (with a mix of 55% city and 45% highway driving) and energy estimates of $3.92 per gallon for premium unleaded in Virginia.
Monthly estimates based on costs in Virginia
$175/mo for C-Class C 300
C-Class C 300
Avg. Midsize Car
As for those engines, there's a lot to chose from if you want something other than the C300's turbocharged four-cylinder engine. For better fuel economy, check out the C350e. This plug-in hybrid version of the C-Class offers a modicum of all-electric driving range, an increase in power and the best fuel economy of the C-Class range. If autobahn-worthy speeds are more your thing, there's a turbocharged V6 in the AMG C43 and the turbocharged V8 in the AMG C63, both of which are bona fide sport sedans.
Of course, there are other entry-level luxury sedans, coupes and convertibles that may catch your eye. But it would be a glaring omission if the 2018 Mercedes-Benz C-Class didn't end up on your short list.
Notably, we picked the 2018 Mercedes-Benz C-Class AMG C 63 as one of Edmunds' Best Sports Sedans for this year.
Edmunds' Expert Rating
Available as a sedan, a coupe or a convertible, the 2018 Mercedes-Benz C-Class is one of the top models in its class. There are lots of optional extras, high-class interior details and sleek styling sure to catch almost anyone's eye.
Which C-Class does Edmunds recommend?
While we certainly lust after the AMG C63 S with its righteously powerful 4.0-liter turbo V8, it's nearly double the price of the base C-Class. (And, really, how often do you get to use 503 horsepower?) As such, going with a standard C300 is a fine choice. It has decent power, a simple yet elegant interior, and lots of available options via packages or stand-alone items. Not sold? OK, for a good middle ground with more power and equipment, but without the C63's high entry cost, check out the AMG C43.
2018 Mercedes-Benz C-Class models
The 2018 Mercedes-Benz C-Class comes in three body styles: sedan, coupe and convertible (Cabriolet). The C-Class sedan, coupe and convertible are available in five trim levels: base C300, C300 4Matic (all-wheel drive), AMG C43, AMG C63 and AMG C63 S. The sedan also gets a plug-in hybrid variant called the C350e. With the exception of the high-horsepower engines and sport-tuned components in the AMG models, most C-Classes get the same standard equipment and are available with a plethora of packaged and stand-alone options.
The C300 sedan (and C300 4Matic) comes standard with a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine (241 horsepower, 273 pound-feet of torque), a nine-speed automatic transmission, 17-inch wheels, automatic wipers, a rearview camera, a sunroof, dual-zone automatic climate control, a power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, 10-way power front seats (with four-way lumbar adjustment), driver-seat memory settings, simulated leather upholstery (the rather good MB-Tex) and 40/20/40-split folding rear seatbacks.
Standard tech includes the COMAND infotainment system (with a 7-inch central display screen and a console-mounted dial controller), Bluetooth and an audio system with a CD player, dual USB ports, an SD card reader and HD radio.
For the most part, the C300 coupe gets the same equipment plus 18-inch wheels. The C300 convertible gets a power-folding fabric top, Mercedes' Airscarf system — which delivers warmed air to the neck and shoulders of front passengers — and a removable wind blocker.
On top of the 18-inch wheels, the C350e (sedan only) gets a turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine paired with an electric motor (275 hp combined), a seven-speed automatic transmission, an air-spring suspension with multiple tuning modes, and LED headlights.
Primary options packages for all C300s are essentially the same. The Premium package adds an electronic trunk closer, blind-spot monitoring, keyless entry and push-button start, and satellite radio. In the coupe and convertible, the Premium package also includes an upgraded Burmester sound system.
Several other options packages are available for the C300 and C350e as well as stand-alone options. We'll dispense with the packages first.
Options packages include the Multimedia package (an upgraded 8.4-inch screen with navigation, voice controls, touchpad infotainment controller); Advanced Lighting package (adaptive high-beam headlights, cornering headlamps, LED headlights, ambient interior lighting); Smartphone Integration package (Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility); Parking Assist package (front and rear parking sensors, top-down parking camera system); the AMG Line package (upgraded brakes, sport suspension, a rear spoiler, unique bodywork); and the Driver Assistance package (forward collision mitigation, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, rear cross-traffic alert).
Stand-alone options for the C300/350e include a panoramic sunroof, a head-up display, heated and ventilated seats, leather upholstery, a cabin air purification and fragrance system, a heated steering wheel, and a number of interior and exterior trim pieces.
For the most part, AMG C43 models get the Premium package equipment along with a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 (362 hp, 384 lb-ft), all-wheel drive, a nine-speed automatic transmission, a sport tuned suspension, adaptive suspension dampers, heated front seats and unique interior trim.
The AMG C63 and C63 S are widely similar with the exception of the turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 (469 hp, 479 lb-ft with the C63; 503 hp, 516 lb-ft with the C63 S) and a multiclutch, high-performance seven-speed automatic transmission. Options for the AMG models include carbon-ceramic brakes, exhaust and upgraded wheels and tires sport seats, carbon-fiber interior and exterior trim, and a special AMG head-up display.
4.1 out of 5 stars
Most helpful consumer reviews
5 out of 5 stars
Loaded C300: My 5th New Mercedes (Long Review)
Quai Noi, 02/26/2018
2018 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C 300 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 9A)
This is my 5th new Mercedes Benz that I have purchased and the second C300. I also drive the heck out of my cars. I maintain them well, but I drive them hard. I go through at least 2 sets of top quality all season sets of tires per car per year. I buy the C300's as cheap commuters and live on Highway 9 and commute into Silicon Valley daily for work. I typically buy more fully loaded GL … and E Class's for my wife. This car replaced my 2015 C300 which was the 1st year for the new body style and it was as great car. This car is a significant improvement in every way. My first C300 (2015) had a number of upgrades and was a great car. However, I didn't get too many upgrades. I had command, LED's, Burmeister (if you get the standard stereo you will regret it as it is terrible), Keyless Go & upgraded wheels. My 2018 C300 is completely loaded. Leather, Command, premium, parking pilot with 360 cameras, LED lights, upgraded wheels, Burmeister Stereo, heated and cooled front seats, wood inlay wheel, active lane keeping assist, active cruise control (semi-autonomous), Keyless Go, electric trunk assist, even the silly cabin fragrances. The first thing I noticed is that this C300 was the first one I have EVER driven that FELT like a Mercedes. For example, when I get in my wife's E-Class, it FEELS and drives like a Mercedes. Meaning that its doors close like a bank vault and there is little to no external sound except on the roughest roads. My wife's car feels heavier too but not in a bad way, more like a powerful and sleek way. My old 2015 C300 was a fun little car but it felt very light and I never felt as comfortable throwing it around on mountain roads like I used to do with the 3 series BMW that it replaced. It was quiet inside but not nearly as nice as my wife's E-Classes have always been. Now this new 2018 feels like a completely different car than the 2015. For starters it has a 9-speed transmission vs. the 7-speed in the 2015. The 7-speed was quite capable, but it felt less refined (by a lot) and held gears so long in sport + mode that the engine noise was shriller than thrilling. chunky is the best way to describe it's shifting. The 2018 9 speed transmission reminds me of the Old Thai Airline's motto "Smooth as Silk". The new transmission means that the cars now drives more like a lighter faster version of the normally aspirated E350 V6. I own both, so I can tell you that it is a very nice feeling. Gone too is the HORRIFIC Turbo Lag of the 2015 4-banger in the old C300. I was nearly T-Boned in Tahoe last year pulling out of a gas station as my 2015 more than once in Tahoe just basically STOPPED responding to the gas pedal when pulling out into traffic at the Lake (not at high altitude) when the temperatures were under 45 degrees F. Also, the old 2015 I felt was unsafe to drive in the green lit "eco mode", it was like driving an early 1980's vintage dodge 4 cylinder when you put it into "eco mode". Now the 2018 doesn't do that, it is extremely smooth, powerful and a joy to drive. I loved my old 2015, but I had to adjust myself to its quirks. In my new 2018 C300 I feel like I do when I get into a much more expensive Mercedes. It handles and accelerates like a dream. On the interstate the engine, cabin and especially the seats allow you to take even long trips with ease and arrive refreshed. Like the 2015 the styling is superb, and the car is a head turner. Also in defense of my 2015 C300, I had zero problems with it in the 3 years I owned it. The C-Class is EXTREMELY reliable. I have owned quite a few Mercedes and BMW's over the years. However, on my commuter vehicles I usually feel like I have to make a lot of compromises. However, I have to say that I do not feel like I had to make any compromises with the new 2018 C300. The car is a blast to drive and delivers on the promise of the Mercedes Benz brand.
4 out of 5 stars
Great-not perfect-but great
Jim Atlanta , 10/03/2020
2018 Mercedes-Benz C-Class AMG C 43 2dr Coupe AWD (3.0L 6cyl Turbo 9A)
I’ve now owned my C43 AMG 4Matic for a year. Overall, I’m happy; yet, it’s not been a perfect experience by any means. I’ll start with the “bad.” It spent nearly three weeks at the dealership to fix a severe oil leak at 2k miles (Leaks =?more appropriate) The oil pan wasn’t properly sealed at the factory, and in two places the line to the turbo leaked. That was frustrating, if not … unsettling. Despite being dangerously low on oil, the notification msg only came on late into the problem. I’ve also had to have the passenger wiper motor replaced. Cosmetically, the panel between the moonroof and the windshield has a paint defect of some kind that makes it look like it’s been parked in the sun for a few decades. No amount of polishing/buffing has helped. It’s just the one panel though, and while I’ve not pushed the issue, technically MBUSA’s warranty coverage excludes this item. The infofrustration system is just stupid as hell. I don’t even attempt to enter GPS destinations anymore—luckily the Mercedes Me app is simple, fast, intuitive, and can send your destination info to your car with zero fuss. MB uses a subscription model for a lot of its connectivity functions, and the price is way too high for what you get. (Dear Mercedes—I just paid $67k for your vehicle. Can ya toss me a bone and just comp the subscription for more than a few months initial trial period? No? Okay.) The ride is Jeep Wrangler bad. I’ll never get over this one- I realize it’s a sports-ish car. But c’mon, there’s a reason ppl buy Mercedes vehicles, and it’s not to be jolted to the point presenting symptoms of shaken baby syndrome. Also, the steering-while predictable and adequate—provides a numb and non-communicative driving experience Other gripes: silly shifter, tiny trunk, backup camera distortion, useless infotainment interface. Abysmal dealer experience. Did I mention the ride? PROS: And there are a lot— BEAUTY Aesthetically, the design inside and out of this car is magnificent. It’s breathtaking at times, even. It’s faster than a lie from the president’s mouth—but only in the AMG version. The sport exhaust option is a superfluous and completely unnecessary, expensive option that defies logic, but I’d never want to drive one without it. When you get pst the turbo lag initially and start going at jail-worthy velocity —tap the upshift paddle and instantly it shoots the car forward and with a “POP!” You’ll swear a bullet fired right out of the tailpipe, grinning ear to ear the entire few seconds you have until you either run over the car ahead of you or Mr. PoPo hears what he swears is a shootout and pulls ya over. Would I buy the same car again? Absolutely.
5 out of 5 stars
Love my Benz "I used 2 ❤ my benz till engine blew
2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C 300 4MATIC 2dr Coupe AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 7A)
Quick, Sleek, Sporty, Fast and Fun Piston cracked, Broke down, smoke coming from everywhere 47,000 miles
5 out of 5 stars
Absolute pleasure to drive
2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C 300 4MATIC 4dr Sedan AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 7A)
Traded in my 2014 C250 coupe. This is my second C300 sedan. Wow! This car is so nice to drive. Quiet, composed, sporty when you want it to be. I've gotten so many compliments on how beautiful the car is. I didn't get the larger wheels because I wanted the ride to be as soft as possible. Added the $5000 package and it has all the luxury i need. Seats are extremely comfortable, … Steering is concise and light. Gear shifts using the paddles are immediate. Fuel economy is pretty good. Averaging 27 mpg combined. If I had one complaint it would be the back seats. They are a bit uncomfortable. Sit a an odd angle and I didn't really feel comfortable in them. Not that I care, really. It's all about the driver seat and that is superb!
We have a limited number of reviews for the 2018 Mercedes-Benz C-Class, so we've included reviews for other years of the C-Class since its last redesign.
2018 C-Class Highlights
|Combined MPG||27 MPG|
|Cost to Drive||$175/month|
|Cargo Capacity |
All Seats In Place
|Drivetrain||rear wheel drive|
|Warranty||4 years / 50,000 miles|
Our experts like the C-Class models:
- Collision Prevention Assist
- Warns the driver audibly and will apply the brakes if it senses a forward collision.
- Surround-View System
- Gives a 360-degree view of the car for tight parking spaces and lots to avoid striking objects or pedestrians.
- Active Blind-Spot Assist
- Senses when a vehicle enters one of your blind spots. Can warn the driver and even help steer the C-Class back.
NHTSA Overall Rating5 out of 5 stars
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
- Frontal Barrier Crash RatingOverall4 / 5Driver5 / 5Passenger4 / 5
- Side Crash RatingOverall5 / 5
- Side Barrier RatingOverall5 / 5Driver5 / 5Passenger5 / 5
- Combined Side Barrier & Pole RatingsFront Seat5 / 5Back Seat5 / 5
- RolloverRollover4 / 5Dynamic Test ResultNo TipRisk Of Rollover11%
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
- Small Overlap Front Driver-Side TestGood
- Small Overlap Front Passenger-Side TestNot Tested
- Moderate Overlap Front Test – OriginalGood
- Moderate Overlap Front Test – UpdatedNot Tested
- Side Impact Test – OriginalGood
- Side Impact Test – UpdatedNot Tested
- Roof Strength TestGood
- Rear Crash Protection / Head RestraintGood