Leica C announced

Leica starts a new line of compacts with the Audi-designed Leica C

Leica C side
Leica C side Leica C top Leica C side Leica C slant view Leica C front Leica C front Leica C rear

Leica Camera AG has announced the Leica C, the first in what is promised to be a new line of digital compact cameras.

With dimensions of 103x63x28mm, the Leica C is the definition of pocket-sized. Its slim form is in part thanks to Audi Design, who was commissioned to develop the look and build of the camera body, as well as a range of accessories.

The Audi-designed accessories for the Leica C include a range of bags, pouches and straps, available in the same light gold or dark red colour finishes as the camera itself.

Image: Audi's accessories for the Leica C are available to purchase seperately, at a range of prices

The Leica C features a generously sized sensor for a camera of its class, with 12.1 megapixels of resolution.

It also comes equipped with a Leica DC Vario-Summicron 6-42.8mm f/2-5.9 ASPH 7x zoom lens, equivalent to 28-200mm in 35mm format.

In continuous shooting mode, the camera is capable of shooting up to ten frames per second. It also comes with an integrated LCD viewfinder and a 3in rear screen, and can capture full-HD video.

Image: The Leica C rear screen makes for a good monitor for shooting movies

The Leica C is the first Leica camera to feature integrated Wi-Fi and NFC for transfer of images to smartphones and tablets. Downloading the Leica C Image Shuttle app and installing it on iOS or Android allows the user to transfer images quickly between devices.

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is included as an optional download with the Leica C package, which goes some way towards explaining the surprisingly hefty £550 price tag.

Image: Adobe Lightroom 5 has been bundled with Leica cameras before

This does seem rather steep, though it's an improvement over the whopping £2250 for the Leica X Vario, announced back in June.

Owners of the new camera are also invited to attend weekly table talks at the Leica Cafe Optik in Mayfair to have a team member answer technical questions.

Leica says the Leica C will be available from authorised Leica dealers mid-September 2013, so presumably it's hitting the shelves more or less imminently. It's available in light gold or dark red at a suggested retail price of £550.

Individual accessories are priced as follows:

C-Twist: £70
C-Snap: £60
C-Clutch: £110
C-Case: £80
C-Pouch: £60
C-Wrist Strap: £30