2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Cabrio Is Elegance Writ Small

The S-Class convertible for people with tiny parking spaces.

byWill Sabel Courtney|
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Don't think of the 2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Cabrio as a cheap way to pick up a convertible with the pointed star on its nose. Much like the C-Class coupe, the 2017 C-Class Cabrio is like a powerful distillate of the luxury sedan's comfort and style

Other than the fact that the droptop is 0.2 inches taller its dimensions are identical to the coupe. And the Cabrio offers the same choice of powertrains: There’s a C300 model powered by a 241-horsepower, 273 lb.–ft. 2.0-liter turbo four, and an AMG-lite C43 with a 362 hp, 384 lb-ft. twin-turbo V6. The C300 comes in rear-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive, while the C43 only comes with AWD—just like the hardtop versions. And like the coupes, both come exclusively with a nine-speed automatic.

The biggest difference between the coupe and cabrio is the obvious one: the Cabrio’s top can be removed far more easily (without power tools, even!) and much less permanently. The multi-layer, acoustically-dampened soft top takes 20 seconds to go from its day job to its cozy home in the trunk, and just as long to get back to work if the weather turns foul. And like many convertibles these days, it’ll happily open and close at speeds up to 31 miles an hour.

But short of a downpour there’s not much reason to put the top up. Mercedes-Benz’s handy-dandy AIRSCARF, which blows warm air onto the necks of the driver and front passenger alike, is standard equipment. Its newer brother AIRCAP, which creates a force field of moving air at speed above the cabin, reducing buffeting inside, is optional. The C-Class Cabrio’s climate control is also designed to shunt warm air over the driver’s hands when the top is down and the heat is on. Reynaud's Disease sufferers, your convertible has arrived.

And since people tend to choose four-seat 'verts for style more than sportiness, the C300 Cabrio comes with a litany of color and trim options: 13 upholstery choices, 12 paint colors, seven interior trims, and four soft top colors. For those who plan on doing a bit of zipping through corners, Mercedes offers a Sport Package for the C300; this adds a sportier suspension, bigger brakes, and a few other AMG-inspired accoutrements. (They also offer, y’know, the C43. Just saying.)

The C300 hits the streets in late summer while the AMG C43 shows up in the autumn. Sure, that might seem like a poor time to introduce a couple of convertibles tailor-made for summertime cruising. But throw some snow tires on the AWD models and crank up the AIRSCARF, and those Cabrios will be ready to motor with the top down all winter long.

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