Top Safety Pick

2010 Mercedes-Benz C-Class

midsize luxury car / 4-door sedan

2010 Mercedes-Benz C-Class 4-door sedan

Crashworthiness

Rating overview
Small overlap front: driver-side
Moderate overlap front
Side
Roof strength
Head restraints & seats

Other available safety features

  • Standard daytime running lights

Key

  • G
    Good
  • A
    Acceptable
  • M
    Marginal
  • P
    Poor
  • Superior
  • Advanced
  • Basic

Some ratings use a scale of Poor to Good. Others range from Basic to Superior.

Small overlap front: driver-side

Rating applies to 2010-13 models built before January 2013

Tested vehicle: 2012 Mercedes-Benz C 250 4-door

The Mercedes-Benz C-Class was redesigned for the 2008 model year. Beginning with 2010 models, an airbag for the driver's knees was added to improve occupant protection in frontal crashes.

Overall evaluation
Structure and safety cage
Driver injury measures
Head/neck
Chest
Hip/thigh
Lower leg/foot
Driver restraints and dummy kinematics
The dummy’s head remained in contact with the frontal airbag, but its head still moved toward the intruding A-pillar because the seat belt allowed excessive forward excursion of the dummy's head and torso. The side curtain airbag did not deploy, leaving the dummy's head vulnerable to contact with side structure and outside objects.

Action shot taken during the first of two small overlap frontal crash tests.

The dummy's position in relation to the door frame, steering wheel, and instrument panel after the crash test, together with the footwell intrusion, indicates that the driver's survival space wasn't maintained well (first test shown).

In the first test, the seat belt allowed far too much forward movement of the dummy to the extent that its head came close to hitting the intruding A-pillar. The side curtain airbag did not deploy, further adding to injury risk.

In both tests, intrusion into the driver footwell was extensive. The dummy's right foot was trapped by intruding structure and the brake pedal as the left front wheel was forced rearward and inward during the crash. (The tire, painted white for visibility, can be seen just below the dummy's left foot after the first test.)

Technical measurements for this test

Measures of occupant compartment intrusion on driver side

Test ID CEN1211
Lower occupant compartment
Lower hinge pillar max (cm) 9
Footrest (cm) 32
Left toepan (cm) 24
Brake pedal (cm) 21
Parking brake (cm) 14
Rocker panel lateral average (cm) 0
Upper occupant compartment
Steering column 4
Upper hinge pillar max (cm) 9
Upper dash (cm) 11
Lower instrument panel (cm) 11

Driver injury measures

Test ID CEN1211
Head
HIC-15 98
Peak gs at hard contact 17
Neck
Tension (kN) 1.1
Extension bending moment (Nm) 6
Maximum Nij 0.21
Chest maximum compression (mm) 19
Femur (kN)
Left 3.1
Right 2.6
Knee displacement (mm)
Left 3
Right 6
Knee-thigh-hip injury risk (%)
Left 1
Right 0
Maximum tibia index
Left 2.01
Right 1.87
Tibia axial force (kN)
Left 5.2
Right 4.4
Foot acceleration (g)
Left 113
Right 112

How the driver-side small overlap front test is conducted

Moderate overlap front

Rating applies to 2010-14 models

Tested vehicle: 2010 Mercedes-Benz C 300 4-door

The Mercedes-Benz C-Class was redesigned for the 2008 model year. Beginning with 2010 models, an airbag for the driver's knees was added to improve occupant protection in frontal crashes. Moderate overlap frontal ratings are assigned by the Institute based on a test conducted by Mercedes-Benz as part of frontal crash test verification.

Overall evaluation
Structure and safety cage
Driver injury measures
Head/neck
Chest
Leg/foot, left
Leg/foot, right
Driver restraints and dummy kinematics
Technical measurements for this test

Measures of occupant compartment intrusion on driver side

Test ID VTF0905
Footwell intrusion
Footrest (cm) 1
Left (cm) 1
Center (cm) 2
Right (cm) 1
Brake pedal (cm) 3
Instrument panel rearward movement
Left (cm) 1
Right (cm) 3
Steering column movement
Upward (cm) -4
Rearward (cm) -6
A-pillar rearward movement (cm) 1

Driver injury measures

Test ID VTF0905
Head
HIC-15 173
Peak gs at hard contact 23
Neck
Tension (kN) 1.3
Extension bending moment (Nm) 8
Maximum Nij 0.30
Chest maximum compression (mm) 32
Legs
Femur force - left (kN) 1.6
Femur force - right (kN) 2.3
Knee displacement - left (mm) 2
Knee displacement - right (mm) 2
Maximum tibia index - left 0.36
Maximum tibia index - right 0.50
Tibia axial force - left (kN) 3.1
Tibia axial force - right (kN) 3.6
Foot acceleration (g)
Left 57
Right 75

How the moderate overlap front test is conducted

Side

Rating applies to 2009-14 models

Tested vehicle: 2009 Mercedes-Benz C 300 4-door with standard front and rear head curtain airbags and standard front seat-mounted torso/pelvis airbags

The Mercedes-Benz C-Class was redesigned for the 2008 model year. Beginning with 2009 models, the front-seat mounted side torso airbags were modified to include an additional chamber to protect the pelvis in side-impact crashes.

Overall evaluation
Structure and safety cage
Driver injury measures
Head/neck
Torso
Pelvis/leg
Driver head protection
Rear passenger injury measures
Head/neck
Torso
Pelvis/leg
Rear passenger head protection

View of the vehicle and barrier just after the crash test.

View of the vehicle after the crash with doors removed, showing the side airbags and damage to the occupant compartment.

Smeared greasepaint shows where the driver dummy's head was protected from being hit by hard structures by the side airbags.

Smeared greasepaint shows where the rear passenger dummy’s head was protected by the side airbag.

Technical measurements for this test

Measures of occupant compartment intrusion on driver side

Test ID CES0842
B-pillar to longitudinal centerline of driver's seat (cm) -20.5
Negative numbers indicate the amount by which the crush stopped short of the seat centerline.

Driver injury measures

Test ID CES0842
Head HIC-15 165
Neck
Tension (kN) 0.8
Compression (kN) 0.4
Shoulder
Lateral deflection (mm) 44
Lateral force (kN) 1.6
Torso
Maximum deflection (mm) 35
Average deflection (mm) 30
Maximum deflection rate (m/s) 2.97
Maximum viscous criterion (m/s) 0.45
Pelvis
Iliac force (kN) 2.0
Acetabulum force (kN) 2.2
Combined force (kN) 3.8
Left femur
L-M force (kN) 0.1
L-M moment (Nm) 74
A-P moment (Nm) 40

Passenger injury measures

Test ID CES0842
Head HIC-15 155
Neck
Tension (kN) 0.5
Compression (kN) 0.5
Shoulder
Lateral deflection (mm) 15
Lateral force (kN) 0.9
Torso
Maximum deflection (mm) 17
Average deflection (mm) 13
Maximum deflection rate (m/s) 2.17
Maximum viscous criterion (m/s) 0.19
Pelvis
Iliac force (kN) 1.6
Acetabulum force (kN) 1.0
Combined force (kN) 2.6
Left femur
L-M force (kN) 0.6
L-M moment (Nm) 89
A-P moment (Nm) -48

How the side crash test is conducted

Roof strength

Rating applies to 2008-14 models

Tested vehicle: 2010 Mercedes-Benz C 300 4-door

Overall evaluation
Curb weight 3,510 lbs
Peak force 18,826 lbs
Strength-to-weight ratio 5.36

How the roof strength test is conducted

Head restraints & seats

Rating applies to 2008-14 models

Seat type: Power leather seats AHR

Overall evaluation
Dynamic rating
Seat/head restraint geometry
Technical measurements for this test
Seat type Power leather seats AHR
Geometry
Backset (mm) 40
Distance below top of head (mm) 36
Seat design parameters
Pass/fail Pass
Max T1 acceleration (g) 11.7
Head contact time (ms) 52
Force rating 1
Neck forces
Max neck shear force (N) 34
Max neck tension (N) 453

How the head restraint & seat test is conducted