Mercedes-Benz, a familiar name when it comes to luxury cars, was the first to launch locally produced hybrid cars in Malaysia with the S 400 in 2014, and they did not stop there. Today, they have just launched another locally assembled hybrid model - the C 350 e, a luxury hybrid model part of Mercedez-Benz C series.
The C 350 e is Mercedes-Benz Malaysia's first model to feature plug-in hybrid technology, which combines a combustion engine with an electric drive and yet can be recharged using an external electric power source. Its electrical energy storage unit is a high-voltage lithium-ion battery with a total capacity of 6.2kWh, can be water-cooled and mounted on a sheet steel housing underneath the rear axle in order to maximise crash safety, driving dynamics and boot space.
The battery can also be recharged in around 1 hour 45 minutes on a 230V, 16A, 3.7kW single phase wallbox, thanks to the C 350 e intelligent on-board charging system. Alternatively, the battery can also be charged using a standard domestic socket that might take approximately 2 hours.
Another unique feature of the Mercedes-Benz C 350 e is in its hybrid drive concept. For the first time, a hybrid is made with an efficient four-cylinder petrol engine. At just under 2 litres, this car produces 211 hp with a maximum torque of 350 Nm. On top of that, the electric motor of the vehicle has an output of up to 60kW and delivers torque of 340Nm, hence together with the petrol engine, the C 350 e has the ability to output a total of 279hp with a torque of 600Nm.
Do not be fooled into thinking that the Mercedes-Benz C 350 e is like any normal hybrid. This 7-speed vehicle has the dynamic performance of a nimble sports car that combines ride comfort of a premium saloon with fuel consuption and environmental compatibility of a small hybrid car.
The C 350 e offers all the characteristics of a state-of-the-art hybrid vehicle. It features a silent start that runs in electric mode, a boost output from the electric motor for rapid acceleration, and energy recuperation during braking and cruising. However, this car has a new feature which is the haptic accelerator pedal, which helps to reduce fuel consumption and exhaust emissions by letting you know when you've reached a point of resistance where the maximum electric performance is being delivered, and have begun to use the combustion engine.
Other than selecting a transmission program, there are also four other operating modes of the C 350 e: a hybrid mode, an all-electric mode, an e-save mode which allows electric driving and boost function to a limited extent, and a charge mode that allows the battery to be recharged while driving using the combustion engine.
The Mercedes-Benz C 350 e will be available for the price of RM 289,888 OTR.