I wouldn't consider a C class "cheap little car". A Toyota Corolla is a "cheap little car", C class is an expensive little car. Its a small version of a S class. Whenever I spoken to a Mercedes salesperson, they've all said the same thing, its a Mercedes. Doesn't matter size or price, its a Mercedes.A strange test, the equivalent of running a small slice of the car against a cleaver. When two cars meet in an extremely offset head on, which is what the test is supposed to simulate, one does not have a shearing wedge buttressed by an immobile block of steel.
In reality, neither car has much in the way of structure or mass in the space between the engine and the fender well, so in an offset head on, each gives a little and the energy is dissipated more or less equally between them.
I'm not surprised the C got creamed... it's a cheap little car but that's a weird test.
I think that the rating of the C-Class is correct, look at the footwell, the front wheel is coming thru, not good, but agree that the A pillar looks in better shape than others.Looking at the video I don't see how the Mercedes performed poorly. The Structure looks fine, the A-pillar barely bent at all, and the driver didn't come near to hitting the steering wheel. Actually, structurally the C250 looks like one of the best tested. The only thing I can think of is that the driver's head hit the A-pillar because it missed the airbag. It looks like Mercedes could leave the structure of the car the same and install a wider airbag, or trigger the side curtain airbags in a head on collision, and get a much better result.
As far as the test I'm all for it. You can't say "gah that test isn't fair!" just because it was a Mercedes that did badly. Safety will only improve if manufacturers have to meet higher standards.
Just to make everybody feel better, here's how the POS Audi did:
2012 Audi A4 small overlap test - YouTube