Short version: The new Mercedes-Benz CLS: Third generation of the original

Mar 2, 2018
Stuttgart/Barcelona

Stuttgart/Barcelona. The new CLS pioneers the new design idiom of Mercedes-Benz, which is recognisable by its clear contours and reduced lines. Its character is marked by a grille contour that widens towards the base and a forward-slanting front section. Other features include wide, flat headlamps and two-section tail lights. At the same time the design reflects the timeless aura of the first CLS, which founded a new segment and quickly became a design icon. All CLS models are equipped with new engines: in-line six-cylinder and in-line four-cylinder units as diesel and petrol versions. Like its predecessors, the third CLS generation exudes self-assured sportiness in exemplary style. The Coupé is a highly emotive vehicle offering impressive long-distance and acoustic comfort coupled with thrilling innovations.

In 2003, with the CLS, Mercedes-Benz created a new vehicle segment that for the first time combined the elegance and dynamism of a coupé with the comfort and functionality of a saloon. With the third generation of the CLS, is now building more strongly than ever on the aura and unique character of this trendsetting model: the new model has pure CLS genes with its arching waistline, flat side window lines and low greenhouse. At the same time it is another example of the logical evolution of the Sensual Purity design idiom: sharp edges and lines have been significantly reduced. It blends seamlessly into the current Mercedes-Benz coupé family with numerous design features. Its Cd figure of 0.26 is proof of outstanding aerodynamics.

The range of engines for the CLS is completely new. Three six-cylinder models will be available on market launch:

  • CLS 350 d 4MATIC (210 kW/286 hp, 600 Nm; combined fuel consumption 5.6 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions 148 g/km),
  • CLS 400 d 4MATIC (250 kW/340 hp, 700 Nm; combined fuel consumption 5.6 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions 148 g/km),
  • CLS 450 4MATIC (270 kW+ 16 kW/367 hp + 22 hp; combined fuel consumption 7.8 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions 178 g/km)[1].

In addition to the engines available on market launch, further entry-level petrol and diesel engine variants are planned for the autumn of this year. These engines likewise come from the new Mercedes-Benz engine generation, and impress with their efficiency and driving pleasure.

The CLS is not only decidedly sporty, but also comfortable. The AIR BODY CONTROL suspension, ENERGIZING comfort control and the very latest infotainment generation with In-Car-Office, smartphone connectivity via Mercedes-Benz Link and wireless charging accentuate this. The touchpad with controller in the centre console gives haptic and acoustic feedback when operating the numerous convenience functions and settings.

The standard appointments of the CLS are very extensive: The highlights include LED High-Performance headlamps, 18-inch light-alloy wheels with mixed tyres, Lane Keeping Assist, Speed Limit Assist, a 12.3-inch multimedia system display, ambience lighting including illuminated air vents, a communication module with LTE and Mercedes me connect services.

Exterior: Self-assured sportiness in the style of Mercedes-Benz coupés

"The new CLS is a design icon as the archetype of the four-door coupé. In line with our design philosophy of sensual purity, we have reduced its DNA in an extremely puristic way and at the same time emotionally charged it with elegant beauty", says Gorden Wagener, Chief Design Officer Daimler AG.

Striking front-end features include the diamond grille typical of Mercedes-Benz coupés, with a single louvre. The silhouette of the radiator grille widens towards the base, adopting the contours of the grille on the Mercedes-AMG GT. The bonnet is completely surrounded by body surfaces. The very flat and wide headlamps with inward-slanting flanks dynamically follow the contour of the grille.

The side design is characterised by the high, arching waistline and the sporty, low greenhouse with frameless side windows. The forward-slanting front end is reminiscent of a shark's nose, and appears longer thanks to the fully inset bonnet.

Also typical of the CLS is the muscular rear shoulder line which blends smoothly into the flat rear end. Characteristic Mercedes coupé features include the two-section tail lights, reflectors positioned in the rear bumper, location of the registration plate in the bumper and the Mercedes star on the boot lid. Depending on specification, this houses an extendable reversing camera.

Like the headlamps, the LED tail lights with Edgelight backlighting have a crystalline appearance and create a three-dimensional effect. Their low positioning accentuates the width of the vehicle.

Interior Consistent colour scheme, Widescreen cockpit

The luxurious interior of the CLS Coupé impresses with its clear basic lines, and echoes the sensual, flowing contours of the exterior. The high-grade choice of materials shows a very high level of finish.

The sporty, width-accentuated cockpit and colour combination creates an impression of particularly generous spaciousness. For a flowing overall impression, the wave-like course of the interior design extends from the front to the rear doors, opening up at the B-pillars.

As a new highlight of the ambience lighting, the illuminated air vents are reminiscent of jet aircraft turbines. The sporty impression is also reinforced by the hand-finished appearance of the seats. On request a high-resolution Widescreen cockpit is available, with two 12.3-inch displays arranged beneath a shared, continuous glass cover. The centre console with open-pored or high-gloss wood appears to be free-floating thanks to its surface trim.

In the fully digital cockpit, the driver is able to feely configure the information content according to need and the driving situation. Three different styles can be selected depending on preference, mood or to suit the interior appointments. The Classic and Sport styles have a basic structure with two tubes, while the Progressive style has one central, tubular instrument.

The ambience lighting with 64 colours, ten colour themes and two effects emphasises the modern, lounge-like atmosphere. The temperature settings are visualised with the help of the illuminated air vents.

The seats were designed exclusively for this model series. Depending on the interior, they feature high-quality piping or transverse seams. The outer seats in the rear have the same appearance as the front seats, creating a sporty single-seat impression, although the CLS Coupé is in fact a five-seater for the first time. When required the backrests optionally can be folded down in a 40:20:40 ratio, expanding the 520-litre luggage compartment.

Wellness on long-distance journeys: ENERGIZING comfort control

ENERGIZING comfort control (optional) links various comfort systems in the vehicle. It systematically uses the functions of the climate control system (including fragrancing) and the seats (heater, ventilation, massage), the surface and steering wheel heating as well as lighting and musical atmospheres, and allows a specific wellness set-up according to customer needs. This has positive effects on wellbeing and driver performance.

These six programmes can be selected:

  • Freshness
  • Warmth
  • Vitality
  • Joy
  • Comfort
  • Training (three training modes – muscle relaxation, muscle activation and balance – each with several exercises).

Intelligent Drive: Technology from the S-Class

The new CLS generation takes its lead from the new S‑Class in many respects: The CLS is equipped with the latest generation of driving assistance systems, with route-based driver support provided by the Driving Assistance Package.

The range of driving assistance and safety systems features a modular design and as standard includes Active Brake Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, ATTENTION ASSIST, Speed Limit Assist and the occupant protection system PRE-SAFE®. New and also part of the standard specification is PRE-SAFE® Sound (prepares human hearing for the anticipated accident noise when there is a risk of a collision).

The optional Driving Assistance Package consists of Active Distance Control DISTRONIC, Active Steering Assist, Active Speed Limit Assist, Active Brake Assist with cross-traffic function, Evasive Steering Assist, Active Blind Spot Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist and PRE‑SAFE® PLUS. Active Distance Control DISTRONIC and Active Steering Assist now provide even more comfortable support for the driver to keep a safe distance and steer. The speed is now adjusted automatically ahead of bends, junctions or roundabouts. Active Lane Changing Assist has also been significantly improved (country-specific differences are possible for individual functions). When the driver wishes to change lanes on multi-lane roads (recognised by the navigation system) at speeds from 80 to 180 km/h, it is now sufficient to nudge the indicator stalk. In addition, the Driving Assistance Plus package includes PRE-SAFE® Impulse Side. This system can brace the front occupants for a side impact by nudging them sideways to reduce the risk of injury.

Thanks to improved camera and radar systems, the new CLS also has an even better view of the surrounding traffic. For the first time it also makes use of map and navigation data to calculate vehicle behaviour.

The "Assistance Graphics" menu of the instrument cluster shows the driver at a glance which assistance functions have been selected, and to what situations the systems are currently responding. Unmistakable icons provide the driver with information on-screen as well as partly in the head-up display. All functions are now controlled from the steering wheel.

In stop & go traffic on motorways and similar roads, stops of up to 30 seconds are now possible during which the CLS starts moving again automatically and follows the traffic (in combination with Active Parking Assist).

The ULTRA RANGE high beam of the MULTIBEAM LED headlamps produces the maximum light intensity permitted by law, which results in the brightness of the main beam headlamps remaining above the reference value of 1 lux over a distance of more than 650 metres. Car-to-X communication is a further trailblazing safety feature. Information concerning hazardous situations which a vehicle on the road has detected is made available to all other Car-to-X users to give drivers an early warning.

Suspension: There is a choice of three variants.

The new CLS has a four-link front suspension and a five-link rear suspension. A dynamically set-up steel comfort suspension is standard equipment. The optionally available DYNAMIC BODY CONTROL suspension has a sporty basic setup and includes continuously adjustable damping at the front and rear axle. The selectable driving modes are Comfort, Sport and Sport +. Also available on request is the AIR BODY CONTROL air suspension with an improved, adjustable and adaptive damping system. The driver is able to choose vehicle characteristics from comfortable to sporty using the driving mode switch.

New range of engines: With EQ Boost and 48 volt on-board electrical system

The third generation of the Mercedes-Benz CLS is powered by completely new engines, initially in-line six-cylinder diesel and petrol units. Also characteristic of the four-door coupé is the extensive range of 4MATIC models.

The output of the diesel unit ranges from 210 kW/286 hp and 600 Nm of torque (CLS 350 d 4MATIC) through to 250 kW/340 hp and 700 Nm (CLS 400 d 4MATIC). The special features of the top-of-the-line engine in the premium diesel family include the stepped-bowl combustion process, two-stage turbocharging and, for the first time, use of CAMTRONIC variable valve-lift control. Its design features a combination of an aluminium engine block and steel pistons as well as further improved NANOSLIDE® coating of the cylinder walls. All components relevant to efficient emissions reduction have been installed directly on the engine.

The most powerful engine is the six-cylinder petrol unit. The new, systematically electrified in-line six-cylinder with EQ Boost (integrated starter/generator) and a 48 V on-board electrical system powers the CLS 450 4MATIC. Its performance data: 270 kW/367 hp and 500 Nm plus a further 250 Nm of torque and 16 kW/22 hp available via EQ Boost over short periods. The integrated electric motor known as EQ Boost assists the combustion engine e.g. when accelerating, makes driving without the combustion engine possible ("gliding") and supplies the battery with power by means of high-efficiency recuperation. By doing so, it makes fuel savings possible that were previously the exclusive domain of high-voltage hybrid technology. All in all, the new in-line six-cylinder engine delivers the performance of an eight-cylinder engine with significantly lower consumption. The CLS 450 4MATIC is equipped with a particulate filter as standard.

Performance and efficiency: Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 4MATIC+

The new Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 4MATIC+ (combined fuel consumption 8.7 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions 200 g/km) combines sporty design with powerful performance and high efficiency. Its centrepiece is a new, electrified 3.0-litre engine featuring twin-turbocharging and an electric auxiliary compressor. The 6-cylinder in-line engine generates 320 kW (435 hp) and delivers maximum torque of 520 Nm. Its EQ Boost starter-alternator temporarily provides an additional 16 kW (22 hp) of output plus 250 Nm of torque, and also feeds the 48 V on-board electrical system. Other technical highlights include the AMG SPEEDSHIFT TCT 9G transmission and the fully variable all-wheel drive system AMG Performance 4MATIC+.

The new CLS models:

 

CLS 350 d 4MATIC

CLS 400 d 4MATIC

CLS 450 4MATIC

Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 4MATIC+

Number of cylinders/ arrangement

6/in-line

6/in-line

6/in-line

6/in-line

Displacement (cc)

2925

2925

2999

2999

Rated output (kW/hp)

210/286

250/340

270/367

320/435

Extra output from EQ Boost (kW/hp)

-

-

16/22

16/22

Rated torque (Nm)

600

700

500

520

Combined fuel consumption (l/100 km)[2]

5.6

5.6

7.8

8.7

Combined CO2 emissions (g/km)2

148

148

178

200

Acceleration 0-100 km/h (s)

5.7

5.0

4.8

4.5

Prices starting at (euros)[3]

68,127.50

72,506.70

70,906.15

n.n.

In-Car Office: The office goes mobile

With the Mercedes me connect service "In-Car Office", CLS drivers can use office functions directly in the vehicle and access important data as if they were in their office. For example, "In-Car Office" uses the locations of calendar entries and automatically transfers these to the car's navigation system. The user can also dial into a telephone conference on the basis of a calendar entry. The system can also automatically detect the required PIN access code and simultaneously dial it.

Edition 1: Particularly exclusive launch model

The exclusivity of the CLS can be heightened even further with the Edition 1, which will be available for around one year after the market launch. This special model has numerous luxurious features as standard which are only available for the Edition 1. These include e.g. the COPPER ART interior concept with seats in black pearl nappa leather with centre sections in a diamond design and copper-coloured accents, copper-coloured contrasting topstitching on the centre console, seats, armrests, dashboard and door panels, and a unique diamond grille with matt chrome pins and chrome inserts with a copper-coloured shimmer. The Edition 1 is available with all engine variants.

The exterior is based on the AMG line. Special features include MULTIBEAM LED headlamps as standard and 20-inch AMG multi-spoke light-alloy wheels painted in black with a high-sheen rim flange. The special model is also recognisable by the "Edition 1" lettering on the front wings.

Highlights of the interior, also based on the AMG line, additionally include:

  • dashboard support lined in black nappa leather
  • centre console and dashboard support trim in black open-pored ash wood
  • IWC analogue clock with exclusive dial face
  • Vehicle key in high-gloss black with high-sheen chrome surround
  • Ambient lighting in 64 colours incl. illuminated ventilation nozzles
  • Mirror package
  • Memory package
  • Rear seat backrest foldable in a 40:20:40 ratio
  • Floor mats with "Edition 1" badge and copper-coloured piping
  • Chrome "Edition 1" lettering on the centre console and "Edition 1" display on the welcome screen.

[1] The stated figures were determined in accordance with the prescribed measuring method. These are "WLTP CO2 figures acc. to the Art. 2 No. 3 Implementing Regulation (EU) 2017/1153. The fuel consumption figures were calculated on the basis of these figures.

[2] NEDC combined acc. to Euro 6d-TEMP. The stated figures were determined in accordance with the prescribed measuring method. These are "WLTP CO2 figures acc. to the Art. 2 No. 3 Implementing Regulation (EU) 2017/1153. The fuel consumption figures were calculated based on these figures.

[3] Non-binding recommended price for Germany including 19% VAT.

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