You probably don’t have to be a Mercedes-Benz specialist to predict what changes would be applied to the C-Class Estate in the transformation process to a rugged All-Terrain vehicle. We got our first glimpse at the lifted estate about a year ago and we saw another camouflaged prototype earlier this month. Today, we can share a new batch of spy shots with the C-Class All-Terrain which is still not ready to reveal its final design.

As you can see from the attached gallery below, the lifted estate wears new plastic trim that has to protect the body from rock chips and other debris as the driver is supposed to go off the paved roads with this vehicle. Of course, you can’t see the plastic cladding clearly but its contours are visible even with all the camouflage foil in place. Our spy photographers report a few smaller changes to the bumpers are also hidden under the disguise.

Gallery: Mercedes C-Class All-Terrain new spy photos

Obviously, this won’t be a hardcore off-road beast but rather a practical estate with a little more capability in the trails. We don’t know how much extra ground clearance is planned but the larger E-Class All-Terrain with the now-standard air suspension has 14.7 centimetres (5.8 inches) of extra ground clearance at full load compared to the E-Class Estate. Nothing can be confirmed at this point but we expect a similar number for the rugged C-Class as well.

The powertrain options are also shrouded in mystery, though it’s probably a safe bet to say the All-Terrain version will mirror the engine range of the standard E-Class to a high degree. Depending on the market, you’ll be able to choose from a selection of petrol, diesel, and hybrid engines.

Mercedes unveiled the new C-Class in February this year and we expect the more rugged variant of the premium Mercedes estate to arrive early next year.