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Mercedes-Benz C-Class W203

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MERCEDES-BENZ C-CLASS MAKES L.A. AUTO SHOW APPEARANCE
2006 C-Class Line Features New-Generation V6 Power

Los Angeles – The 2006 Mercedes-Benz C-Class sedans on display at the Greater L.A. Auto Show, open to the public January 6-15, 2006, feature new-generation V6 engines for all models except the high-performance V8-powered C55 AMG. The new V6 engines use dual-overhead-cam, four-valve-per-cylinder technology with variable valve timing that produces an impressively broad power band and enviable ultra-low-emissions-vehicle or ULEV status.

The all-sedan 2006 line begins with the C230 sport sedan, fitted this year with a 201-horsepower, 2.5-liter version of the new V6. Next is the C280 luxury sedan, which comes with a 228-hp, 3.0-liter V6, followed by the C350 (available in luxury or sport trim), powered by a 3.5-liter, 268-hp version of the new V6 engine family. At the top of the line is the limited-production C55 AMG, which features the 5.5-liter V8 that’s specially modified by AMG, the high-performance arm of Mercedes-Benz, to produce 362 hp for 0-to-60 mph acceleration of 4.9 seconds.

All V6-powered C-Class models (except those equipped with 4MATIC) come standard with the highly acclaimed Mercedes-Benz seven-speed automatic transmission, while the C230 and C350 Sport sedans come with a slick-shifting six-speed manual transmission. The C280 and C350 luxury models can be ordered with the 4MATIC all-wheel drive / heated seats package, which includes the proven five-speed automatic transmission, and all C55 AMG sedans are fitted with an AMG-modified five-speed automatic.

Active front head restraints make their debut on all 2006 C-Class models. In the event of a rear collision exceeding the system’s deployment threshold, the front head restraints move forward more than 1¾ inches (44 mm) and upward by more than an inch (30 mm), helping to support the head and reduce the likelihood of whiplash injuries.

For the 2005 model year, the C-Class line was upgraded with a new dashboard, a four-gauge instrument cluster, redesigned center console and seats that were re-contoured for additional comfort and support. The enhanced interior included redesigned switchgear and chrome accents, while the sport sedans received a three-spoke steering wheel, aluminum trim throughout the cabin and standard AMG exterior body styling. All C-Class models were fitted with redesigned, clear headlights and revised taillights to complement the updated exterior.

Shifting with Pleasure: The Six-Speed Manual

Bringing a strong sporty component to the C-Class sport sedans, the six-speed manual transmission features short gear throws and a direct shift rod for precise shifting. Mercedes engineers narrowed the gaps between each gear ratio and slightly shortened first gear (as compared to a five-speed manual) for quicker off-the-line acceleration, while maintaining an overdrive sixth gear for quiet and fuel-efficient highway cruising. Shift effort is low, thanks to multiple-cone synchromesh, easing cross-gate shifts from second to third and from fourth to fifth.

The Industry’s Only Seven-Speed Automatic Transmission

Seven gear ratios provide a wider spread of ratios between first gear and top gear and, at the same time, allow the engine to run in its most favorable rev range more often. It also gives the electronic control unit more flexibility in terms of maximizing fuel economy and making the transmission’s reaction time extremely fast. Unlike most automatic transmissions, the new seven-speed transmission will skip up to four gears if necessary, shifting directly from seventh to fifth, for example, or even sixth to second. This helps to choose the perfect gear ratio for quick acceleration and ensure smooth, almost imperceptible shifts in the process.

Grip Aplenty – 4MATIC All-Wheel-Drive

For unparalleled grip in most weather, the C280 and C350 luxury sedans offer the optional Mercedes-Benz 4MATIC all-wheel-drive system, a full-time adaptive all-wheel-drive system that uses a standard 40/60 front/rear torque split and requires no driver intervention.

Advanced four-wheel electronic traction control is used to vary torque distribution to individual wheels under slippery conditions. Even if three wheels lose traction, 4MATIC can direct power to just one wheel – front or back, left or right – to keep the car moving. The system is lightweight and compact, so passenger and cargo space are unaffected.

Lightweight, Energy Absorbing Front Suspension

The C-Class suspension blends several innovations with proven Mercedes-Benz engineering triumphs. At the front, the C-Class combines a coil-spring strut with two separate lower links, twin-tube gas shocks and a stabilizer bar. By using two lower links rather than one large control arm, the car can provide better impact absorption in the case of a frontal impact. In addition, sensitivity to potential wheel imbalance or brake fluctuation is reduced. Rack-and-pinion steering is finely honed to deliver precise, direct feel and response. Like the front suspension, the steering rack provides a safety benefit. Mounted ahead of the front wheels on an aluminum subframe, the rack does not impede absorption of crash energy.

Proven Multi-Link Rear Suspension

At the rear of the C-Class, the proven multi-link independent suspension (pioneered by Mercedes-Benz) is tailored specifically to each C-Class model. Engineers designed the track links, hub carriers and the subframe as well as all the elastokinematics – the engineered wheel deflection under extreme load – to ensure optimum predictability while driven hard.

For the luxury sedans, 7 x 16-inch alloy wheels wear 205/55 R 16 tires, while the sport sedans feature staggered-width 7.5 x 17 front and 8.5 x 17-inch rear alloy wheels with 225/45 ZR17 and 245/40 ZR17 high-performance tires. The C55 AMG rides on staggered 7.5 x 18 front and 8.5 x 18 rear alloy wheels with 225/40 ZR18 front and 245/35 ZR18 rear high-performance tires.

Extra Braking Power in Reserve

Consistent with Mercedes-Benz passenger vehicles, the C-Class features four-wheel disc brakes with a standard four-channel ABS anti-lock braking system and Brake Assist – both Mercedes-Benz innovations. The C55 AMG comes with giant 13.6-inch vented discs in front and 11.8-inch vented rear discs.

Electronic Stability Program (ESP)

Mercedes-Benz was first to introduce a true automatic stability system in 1996 with ESP stability control, and every 2006 Mercedes-Benz automobile comes with ESP. Tailored to each specific model, the safety system helps drivers maintain directional stability – especially on slippery or gravel-covered roads – by preventing oversteer (rear-end “fishtailing”) or understeer (front-end “plowing”). ESP can sense impending loss of control – at the front or rear end – and momentarily apply the brake on only one wheel to restore stability, something that even a skilled driver cannot do.

Source - Mercedes-Benz