Ratings: 2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line - How good is it without the badge?

Arif · Feb 17, 2021 08:45 AM

This week we shall have a look at the 2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line (W205). The W205 generation is in its 8th year since its debut in 2014 and an all-new W206 is in the pipeline.

The Mercedes-Bens C200 AMG Line is a compact executive, rivalling the likes of the BMW 3 series and Volvo S60. Most of us adore the Mercedes for its badge and perceived luxury that it offers. Here's how its numbers look in our WapCar Ratings.

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line: Driving Performance - 36/50 pts, Could use more linearity 

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line - Facts and Figures
Engine 2.0-litre 4-cylinder turbo
Transmission 9-speed Automatic (9G-tronic)
Power 204 PS @ 5,800 - 6,100 rpm
Torque 300 Nm @ 1,600 - 4,400 rpm
Weight 1,465 kg
0-100 km/h 7.0 seconds
100-0 km/h 39.2 metres

The 2.0-litre turbo engine in the C200 AMG Line is slightly more pore powerful than the 2.0-litre turbo in the BMW 320i (184PS/300Nm).

Both cars also have a very similar century sprint time with the Mercedes leading by a mere 0.1 seconds in our test runs.

In terms of numbers, the C200 loses out to the 320i in terms of braking distance. An additional 2 meters is required to stop the C200 from a 100km/h travelling speed.

The 9-speed automatic is generally smooth, but does occasionally lurch when it hunts for gears

The steering wheel has an assuring weight to it and steering response is sharp. The C200 does come with variable steering ratio.

Throttle and brake pedal response is not as linear as its rivals (3 series and S60). The brakes catch a little too abruptly during parking manoeuvres, but you'll get used to it over time.

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line  - Driving Performances Breakdown
Engine Acceleration 3.5 / 5
In-gear Acceleration 4 / 5
Throttle Response 3 / 5
Transmission Shift Logic 2 / 3
Smoothness 3.5 / 5
Sport/Manual Mode 2 / 3
Steering Accuracy 2.5 / 3
Response 3 / 3
Weight & Feel 2 / 3
Braking Distance 1.5 / 3
Feel 1.5 / 3
Handling Chassis Balance 2.5 / 3
Grip 2.5 / 3
Load Reaction 2.5 / 3
Total   36 / 50 pts

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line : Ride Comfort - 29.5/50 pts, Poor rebound but good seats

If you've read our review on the C200, you will know that it isn't the most comfortable in its segment.

One factor for its less than average ride quality is the excessive damping on the rebound. Road undulations become obvious at highway speeds and induces fatigue.

Another possible contributing factor for the C200 AMG Line's ride quality are the run-flat tires that it uses.

The C200 AMG Line and C300 AMG Line are fitted with run flat tires
2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line  - Noise Level
60 km/h 60 dB
90 km/h 67 dB
110 km/h 69 dB

The recorded 69 dB cabin noise at 100 km/h is not too far off from the BMW 320i (67 dB) and Volvo S60 T8 (68 dB) - the main source of noise being the wind.

Negative points aside, credit has to be given to the plush and comfortable seats in the C200 AMG Line. While comfort is subjective, they are certainly softer than the seats in the BMW 320i.

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line  - Ride Comfort Breakdown
Sound Proofing 7 / 10
Suspension 4 / 10
Passenger Comfort 5 / 10
Seat Support 3 / 5
Ergonomics 2.5 / 5
Engine Refinement 8 / 10
Total points 29.5 / 50 pts

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line : Quality and Features - 37/50 pts, Good presentation of luxury

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line  - Panel Gaps (mm)
Location Driver Side Passenger Side Difference
Bonnet 2.5 2.5 0
Front Fender 3.5 3.5 0
Front to Rear Door 3.5 3.5 0
Rear Door to quarter panel 2.5 2.5 0
Tailgate 2.5 3 0.5

In terms of basic build quality items like paint thickness and panel gap consistency, the C200 AMG Line is just one point away from a full score. We have no complaints here.

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line  - Paint thickness (µm)
Location Driver Side Passenger Side
Front Bonnet 103
Front Fender 110 108
Front Door 113 113
Rear Door 100 99
Rear Quarter Panel 102 119
Tailgate 99
Roof 139
Average paint thickness: 110 µm ±3

The panel gaps are very consistent between the left and right side and the paint thickness shows minimal deviation across the body panels.

In terms of exterior materials however, some "chrome" pieces have shown sign of age which is quite surprising for a new car. Perhaps it was only our test car with this issue.

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line  - Exterior Material Use
Bonnet Soundproofing Material Thick
Struts Gas
Front Fenders Soundproofing Material Yes
Doors Front Windows Single Glazed
Rear Windows Single Glazed
Construction One Piece
Tailgate/Boot Opening Manual

The Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line nails it when comes to perceived luxury in the cabin. The cabin materials may not differ in costs so much from its rivals (3 series, S60), but the C200 offers the most flamboyant presentation of luxury in its segment.

The open-pore oak wood trims, all-around soft plastics, and ambient lighting are sure impress to those who have a thing for luxury bits. The only "luxury" bit lacking here is a panoramic sunroof (available in C300 AMG Line). Build quality of the cabin is good.

What the Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line lacks is a full suite of ADAS. The C300 AMG Line, a step above the C200 AMG Line, adds on Active Lane Keep Assist and Active Brake Assist.

As for the infotainment system, it is not very intuitive. The user interface, despite its decent graphics, could use some improvements.

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line  - Cabin Material Use
Seat Seat Cover Leather
Armrest Armrest Cover Leather
Dashboard Upper Section Soft Plastic
  Lower Section Soft Plastic
Front Doors Upper Section Soft Plastic
  Middle Section Leather
  Lower Section Soft Plastic

In terms of convenience, the C200 AMG Line lacks 360° cameras and bootlid convenience closing (offered in C300 AMG Line). However, it does come with Android Auto/Apple Carplay, Mercedes Parking Assist (Parktronic), TPMS, and run flat tires.

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line - Quality & Feature Breakdown
Exterior Paint Finish 3 / 4
Panel Gaps 4 / 4
Assembly Quality 2 / 2
Interior Build Quality 4 / 5
Materials Used 4 / 5
Features Safety 9 / 10
ADAS 2 / 5
Luxury 4 / 5
Convenience 2 / 5
Infotainment 3 / 5
Total   37 / 50 pts

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line: Space and Practicality - 32/50 pts, Beats its rival by an inch

Compared to its segment rivals, passenger space is very comparable. Its wins are in certain aspects like the first-row headroom. The C-Class offers 1,010 mm of headroom compared to the BMW 3 series' 920 mm.

Second row headroom and legroom

The same goes for the back seat legroom. The C-Class just offers a tad more of room. The fraction of a difference really only matters if you are a tall person.

Boot space is rated at 480 litres, exactly the same as the BMW 3 series. The rear seats fold flat, offering 1,620 mm of a flatbed for loading long items.

1,620 mm of a flatbed for long items with the rear seats down
2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line  - Interior Space Breakdown
Front Row 8 / 10
Middle/Back Row 8 / 10
Third Row 0 / 5
Boot Space 3 / 5
Practicality 4 / 5
Storage Space 4 / 5
Visibility 3 / 5
Storage Flexibility 2 / 5
Total 32 / 50 pts

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line : Fuel Consumption – 15/20 pts, Average

After driving for 106.7 km (50% highway and 50% city), the C200 used up 9.141 litres of fuel. Our calculated fuel consumption is 8.6 l/100 km, which is an acceptable value for the C-Class.

The C200 AMG line is only slightly thirstier than the BMW 320i (8 l/100km).

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line - Fuel Consumption Test Breakdown
Fuel Consumption 11 / 15
Eco Mode 2 / 2
Indicator Accuracy 2 / 3
Total points 15 / 20 pts

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line : Purchase and Cost – 17/30, You pay for the badge

Without SST, the Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line would cost you RM 251,587, which is about RM10,000 more than the BMW 320i. And if you're looking for ROI in terms of driving experience, the Bavarian machine is a more attractive option.

Instead of the usual 5-year warranty, the C-Class only comes with a 4-year warranty (unlimited mileage). The C200 also does not offer any form of free maintenance like the BMW 3 series used to (BMW vehicles registered from 1st June 2015 until 31st December 2020).

Penny savings aside, the C200 offers an excellent presentation of luxury. Sometimes you just buy something because you like it.

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line - Purchase & Cost
Purchase Car Price 9 / 15
Warranty 2 / 5
Cost Maintenance 3 / 5
Fuel Cost 3 / 5
Total   17 / 30 pts

2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line: Conclusion - 166.5/250 pts overall

Considering all the factors like cost, quality, comfort, and driving performance, we end up with a total score of 166.5/250 points for the 2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class C200 AMG Line.

Its weak points are ride comfort and price. The ride comfort could use some improvements. Besides that, the warranty and maintenance package are not very attractive when you consider what its rivals offer.

Its strongest suite is its packaging and presentation of luxury. Even if we took out the Mercedes badge, the presentation is still top notch.

Driving performance of the C200 isn't the best in its class, but this only becomes an issue to those with an absolute passion for driving.

If you really want one, you should be able to look past its flaws.