Mercedes is putting on quite a show at Auto Shanghai in China where aside from bringing the EQS and EQB electric duo and the CLS facelift, it's also unveiling the long-wheelbase C-Class. Suitably carrying the "L" suffix, the luxury saloon goes up against the locally-produced BMW 3 Series and Audi A4, which both have also been stretched out for additional rear legroom.
The elongated wheelbase and bigger rear doors are not the only signs we're dealing with the China-only C-Class L as you'll also notice the classic front grille design. Not only that, but Mercedes is keeping the long-standing bonnet ornament tradition alive, and dare we say it looks quite elegant. A different car was brought onto the stage in Shanghai featuring a more modern look in the same vein as the global standard-wheelbase C-Class.
Gallery: 2021 Mercedes C-Class Long Wheelbase (CN)
Mercedes doesn’t go into details about the car's size, but local reports are saying the wheelbase measures a generous 2,954 millimetres (116.3 inches), thus making it 89 mm (3.5 in) longer than that of the international C-Class W206. Overall length has blossomed to 4,882 mm (192.2 inches), representing an increase of 131 mm (5.1 in) over the standard sedan. The stylised "L" logo on the rear pillar further denotes it's the model exclusive to the People's Republic.
The interior has been essentially carried over from the global C-Class, the high-end version to be exact. As you know, Mercedes will also sell the latest C in some parts of the world in a lesser specification without the S-Class-esque XXL touchscreen. That one will eschew the 11.9-inch display for a more compact 9.5-inch setup joined by separate capacitive-touch climate controls.
There are some changes in the back beyond the extra legroom as Mercedes has installed fancier seats in the C-Class L, separated by a wider central armrest with built-in cupholders and USB ports. Interestingly, the Chinese variant has more sound-deadening material to enable a quieter cabin, also helped by a more comfortable suspension setup.
The C-Class L joins its saloon brothers in China where Mercedes also sells an A-Class L (with an available AMG A35 hot version) and an E-Class L along with a stretched GLC crossover.