STUTTGART, Germany - Mercedes-Benz’s C-Class range - due for launch in South Africa next week - is growing with the addition of an Estate version joining the line-up in September 2014. Mercedes-Benz South Africa says it will arrive here during the first quarter of 2015 with three derivatives - C 180, C220 BlueTEC and C 250.IMAGE GALLERY: 2014 Mercedes-Benz C-Class EstateVIDEO: 2014 Mercedes-Benz C-Class EstateThe German automaker says the Estate shines with a clear and emotional-sporty design, innovative technology, variability and bigger boot space. "Its sophisticated interior makes modern luxury tangible with design highlight and reinforces its reputation as a multifaceted lifestyle vehicle with outstanding properties for everyday use."BEST BY FARThe Estate model also debuts Mercedes’ Connect Me service, which makes it possible for owners to connect to the vehicle from anywhere at any time, to do things such as retrieve the car’s fuel tank level and operate the aircon.So who will buy an Estate? Mercedes says active, modern people on shopping sprees, holiday-makers and those who play sports. “The Estate continues the tradition which combines demands on lifestyle, sportiness and practicality in an estate car, in the fourth generation on a new level.”Mercedes-Benz’s group research and cars development boss Thomas Weber said: "The new Estate is not only extremely practical thanks to its large, variable load compartment. With its state-of-the-art technical features it also strikes out in new directions in its segment with regard to safety, efficiency and comfort. Men and women equally enjoy noticeably more driving pleasure".LIVELY ENGINESThe powerful and efficient petrol and diesel engines with eco stop/start function comply with Euro VI emissions standards and consume 20% less fuel.The BlueTec diesel four-cylinder units are equipped with selective catalytic reduction technology. They cover an output range from 85kW to 150kW.Three BlueDirect four-cylinder petrol engines and one six-cylinder petrol engine with power outputs ranging from 115 to 245kW will initially be available. The four-cylinder C 350 Hybrid with plug-in technology with 155 + 50kW will follow.Owners can choose a driving programme at the push of a button: Comfort, Eco, Sport or Sport+. The additional "Individual" option enables drivers to configure their vehicle to suit their own preferences. The car is also equipped with an electric parking brake and 4Matic all-wheel drive.BIGGER AND BETTERThe new Estate is a lot bigger than the previous model: 80mm increase in the wheelbase (2.84cm), 96mm longer (4.70cm) and 40mm wider (1.81cm). All this means increased rear legroom of 45mm. There is also more shoulder room, elbow room and headroom than in the previous model.Boot space is up by 10 litres, Taking the maximum load capacity to 1510 litres and the space behind the rear seats has increased by five litres to 490 litres.The rear seats, says Merc, now have a 40:20:40 split instead of the usual 60:40 which means a wide range of seating possibilities as a five-seater, four-seater, three-seater or two-seater. There’s an optional easy pack power tailgate and a hands-free access system. It allows opening and closing the boot without touching it by a motion of the foot in the area of the rear bumper.HEY, GOOD LOOKINGCustomers can choose from two fronts – the sports grille or, reserved for the Exclusive Line, the luxury grille with a Mercedes star on the bonnet.The interior has sporty, flowing lines and high-grade materials. In addition to the base model, there are three distinct design and equipment lines each for the exterior and interior.The new touchpad marks an evolutionary step, says Mercedes, as all the head-unit functions can be operated using finger gestures – just like on a smartphone. The 65x45mm control surface is built into the handrest on the central control panel.A head-up display is also new. The automaker says, just like in a jet fighter, it projects important information directly into the driver's field of vision - vehicle speed, posted speed limits, navigation instructions and Distronic messages.The Estate adopts almost all new assistance systems from the S and E-class, which have been enhanced with significant functions. A number of assistance systems claim to increase comfort and safety. Mercedes says the Estate is the only vehicle in its segment to offer tunnel detection via satellite navigation. It uses the map data from the navigation system and the GPS location data to close the air recirculation flap automatically when the vehicle enters a tunnel, re-opening it when the car emerges from the tunnel.There’s a new multimedia generation with intuitive operation, featuring elaborate animations and visual effects and a front bass system. A Burmester surround sound system is optional.