Mercedes C-Class hybrid saloon practicality & boot space
They're less practical than a non-hybrid C-Class, but the C 300 hybrid models are just as comfortable and more refined
A saloon isn't the most practical bodystyle you can buy – families may be better served by an equivalent SUV or estate car – but for business or private-hire use, they offer a refined, comfortable experience that makes a lot of sense on long motorway trips or early-morning airport transfers. The plug-in hybrid C-Class models are perfect for these tasks – with the diesel version more suited to longer trips
The C-Class has always been a comfortable and spacious proposition and that's largely the case here, although the common boot-space tradeoff that comes with a plug-in hybrid based on an otherwise internal-combustion car is present and correct too. A BMW 330e saloon will be a little more versatile with its bigger boot, but the Mercedes gets motorway comfort just right.
Mercedes C-Class hybrid saloon interior space, storage & comfort
The compact executive class is all about spacious, well appointed interiors and the C-Class doesn't disappoint in this department. The car's interior isn't quite as fashion-forward as some of the brand's more modern designs, but it's well built, finished with good-quality materials and features comfortable seats with plenty of adjustment.
There's enough space in the back for two adults to get comfortable; Mercedes has made sure to offer comparable space to rivals from BMW and Audi. The middle seat isn't the roomiest due to the presence of the car's transmission tunnel, but should be fine for shorter trips.
Both the C 300 de and C 300 e have a 300-litre boot – down by a significant margin on standard model's 455 litres due to the hybrid system's batteries taking up space under the boot floor, and much less than the 375 litres you get in a BMW 330e. The seats don't fold down, as this is a traditional three-box saloon; those looking for more versatility and load space will be better served by the C-Class estate.
In This Review
- 1VerdictThe Mercedes C 300 hybrid is the only model in its sector with the option of diesel-electric power – and it's a great combination
- 2Range, MPG, CO2 & chargingThe C 300 hybrids' strong range and economy impress, while the diesel-electric version is still fairly frugal when the battery goes flat
- 3Running costsThe C 300 hybrid models make most sense for company-car users; a diesel fallback is a welcome option
- 4Engines, drive & performanceNeither C 300 hybrid is a slouch and both handle well; the diesel-electric version in particular has buckets of torque
- 5Interior & comfortWell built and with good infotainment, the C 300 hybrids have a pleasant cabin; some rivals are more modern-feeling, however
- 6Practicality & boot space - currently readingThey're less practical than a non-hybrid C-Class, but the C 300 hybrid models are just as comfortable and more refined
- 7Reliability & safetyThe C 300 hybrid Mercedes are safe cars, but you have to pay extra to get the best assistance technology