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Due mainly to Mercedes' change of naming strategy, which sees the CLK evaporate, this is the first C-class Cabriolet. A direct rival for the BMW 4-series Convertible and Audi A5 Cabriolet, the new Mercedes comes with six engine options, two of which are diesel, and two trim levels of Sport and AMG Line.
An insulated fabric roof means that, roof up, the refinement isn't far off the levels of regular models, although there is still wind noise where windows meet a roof that drops in 20 seconds and at speeds of up to an impressive 30mph.
Access to the pair of rear seats that fold individually to increase luggage space is decent thanks to the sliding electric front seats, and predictably easier with the roof down, while the boot goes from 285 litres with the roof down to a maximum of 360 litres without the top folded neatly into the boot.
The top-down experience is impressively low of draft, especially with the electric draught stop extended between the rear seat headrests, and Mercedes' clever airscarf neck-level heating system combines well with the climate control system that adapts for whether the roof is up or down, to make topless motoring an option whatever the temperature.
Where Mercedes doesn't always stack up is on whole-life costs. However, the C-class Cabriolet has the measure of its Audi and BMW rival in this case, thanks to emissions and residual values neither premium competitor car approach. The Mercedes, in this 170hp 2.1-litre form, is 20hp down on the others, but the 121g/km of emissions compares with 124g/km for the BMW and 134g/km for the Audi.
The C-class, with its bluff front and bold grille, may not quite win the style points, against the elegant Audi in particular, but it's a sensible and clever all-round package that is comparatively cost-efficient to run.
Mercedes-Benz C220d Cabriolet Sport
Model price range £36,015-£64,980
Residual value 40.2%
Service, maintenance and repair £2973
Vehicle Excise Duty £220
National Insurance £4308
Cost per mile 78.0p
Fuel consumption 61.4mpg
CO2 (BIK band) 121g/km (24%)
BIK 20/40% per month £160/£320
Warranty 3yrs/unlimited miles
Boot space (min/max) 285/360 litres
Engine size/power 2143cc/170hp
Drop-top style meets - at this level - sensible running costs