By Mauricio Lezcano / carsntravel.com / Photos Mercedes-Benz USA
The CLS design idiom of Mercedes-Benz, which is recognizable by its clear contours and reduced lines, now for 2019, the Mercedes-Benz CLS 450 4Matic Coupe offers a sporty design combined with performance and efficiency.
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 sedan. 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.
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 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 characterized 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.
The luxurious interior of the CLS450 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 color 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 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 center 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 can 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 colors, ten color themes and two effects emphasizes the modern, loungelike atmosphere. The temperature settings are visualized with the help of the illuminated air vents.
In addition, 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 CLS450 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.
The Mercedes-Benz CLS 450 4MATIC is powered by a systematically electrified six-cylinder in-line gasoline engine. Its performance data: 270 kW/367 hp and 500 Nm of torque, a further 250 Nm of torque and 16 kW/22 hp available via EQ Boost over short periods. Compared with the similarly powerful CLS 500 predecessor with a V8 engine, it has been possible to reduce the CO2 emissions of the engine by around 23 percent.
The integrated starter/alternator is responsible for hybrid functions such as EQ Boost or energy recuperation, while allowing fuel savings that were previously reserved for high-voltage hybrid technology.
Systematic electrification dispenses with the need for a belt drive for ancillary components at the front of the engine, which reduces its overall length. The slim design, together with the physical separation of intake/exhaust, creates space for near-engine exhaust aftertreatment. The 48-volt on-board power supply serves not only high-power consumers such as the water pump and air-conditioning compressor, but also the Integrated Starter Generator, which also supplies energy to the battery by means of highly efficient energy recuperation.
Nine gears for comfortable and efficient gear shifts
The new CLS450, power is transmitted by the 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission. The broad ratio spread of gears one to nine allows a clearly perceptible reduction in engine speed and is a decisive factor behind the high level of energy efficiency and ride comfort. The high overall efficiency is reflected in the fuel economy.
Shortened shift and response times ensure optimum spontaneity combined with outstandingly smooth gear changes. Particularly in manual mode and S mode, 9G-TRONIC responds immediately and enhances driving pleasure.
The particularly good gear-shifting comfort of the 9-speed automatic transmission is the result of extensive measures. These include the novel direct control system which enables short, barely perceptible gear changes. The combination of twin-turbine torsional damper and centrifugal pendulum technology in the torque converter ensures outstanding drive comfort. An additional, electric transmission oil pump is activated in start/stop operation, ensuring a basic supply to the control elements and actuators.
The new CLS450 is a design icon as the archetype of the four-door coupé. In line with our design philosophy of sensual purity, Mercedes Benz have reduced its DNA in an extremely puristic way and at the same time emotionally charged it with elegant beauty; The CLS450 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 Mercedes Benz CLS450 4MATIC Coupe starts at $71,700.00, the one I drove included, Lunar Blue Metallic Exterior Paint ($720.00), Marsala Brown/Expresso Brown Nappa Leather Interior ($1,370.00), Heated and Ventilated Front Seats ($450.00), Head Up Display ($990.00), Air Body Control Air Suspension ($1,900.00), Power Rear Window Sunshade ($440.00), Burmester High-End 3D Surround Sound System ($5,400), Soft Close Doors ($550.00), Heated Rear Seats ($580.00), Acoustic Comfort Package ($1,100.00), Premium Package ($650.00), AMG-Line Brushed Aluminum Sport Pedals with Rubber Stubs ($970.00), Warmth and Comfort Package ($1,050.00), Energizing Comfort Package ($550.00), Parking Assistant Package ($1,290.00), Driver Assistance Package ($2,250.00), and it came in at $93,205.00 including Destination and Delivery ($995.00).