Mercedes C200 Estate

Marriage counselling by Mercedes-Benz

FELIPE UBILLA

DURING the Christmas period, you often have to endure many unfortunate experiences.

Christmas shopping, annoying relatives, school kids on break, and those bastard hot days that you just canít escape.

Luckily, I was stuck with a Mercedes-Benz C200 wagon.

Actually, I should say gifted.

Since the C-Class debuted last August, Iíve had the chance to drive most of the range, but this was my first extended period of time spent with any model. Base variants tend to remind you that youíre missing out on something, but in the feature-packed C200, I never felt left out. Every time you sit in its classy interior, the C200 blows you away with its opulence.

The Estate has much more cargo space than the sedan, and is larger than many of the top-selling SUVs on the market, which the C200 wagon inevitably competes against. The rear seats also gain extra headroom. Plenty of space, then, to put to good use when holidaying with wifey and toddler.

In all directions, room is never cargo an issue for a compact family like ours. And the huge bootís flat, lovingly trimmed floor makes it easy to slide stuff in and out.

Driving is an unexpected joy with the low seating position connecting you to the road like an SUV never will. Comfort mode is great for keeping the family quiet, but flick the Agility Select up two notches to Sports Plus and the hard-working 135kW donk can be a surprising amount of fun.

In fact, thereís very little I dislike about the W205 C-Class.

This COTY finalist excelled at every task thrown at it. And while it may have fallen short of claiming the main prize, it sits right at the top of my ĎNext Carí list. Plus, the missus loves it!