After crash-testing the 2013 Mercedes-Benz ML-Class and C-Class, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has given each a five-star overall rating. Compared to the 2011-model-year Mercedes-Benz C-Class sedan, the 2013 model has improved enough to now earn a five-star rating as well.
The 2013 C-Class coupe has yet to be NHTSA-tested, but the C-Class has been rated by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Although the C-Class is a Top Safety Pick (scoring Good in side impact, roof strength, and moderate overlap front tests), the car was given a rating of Poor in the organization’s newer small overlap front test. In NHTSA ratings, the C-Class scored four stars in the frontal crash and rollover tests, and five stars in the side crash test. For comparison, the BMW 3 Series is also a Top Safety Pick but scored Marginal in the small overlap front test. Like the 2013 C-Class, the 2013 BMW 328i has a five-star overall rating from the NHTSA.
As for the 2013 Mercedes-Benz ML-Class, the SUV scored five stars in the frontal and side crash tests, and four stars in the rollover test, for an overall five-star NHTSA rating. In IIHS tests, the ML has a Good rating in moderate overlap front, roof strength, and side impact tests. The BMW X5 hasn’t recently been NHTSA-tested, but the ML rival also has a Good IIHS rating in moderate overlap front and side impact tests.
While the ML-Class was new for the 2012 model year, the C-Class is nearing the end of its production lifecycle. We expect the next-generation model to be a bit bigger to give more room to the new entry-level 2014 CLA-Class sedan.
Source: NHTSA, IIHS