The new CL-Class ushers in the seventh generation of the large Mercedes Coupés. The two-door model replaces the world-beating outgoing model, which joins the ranks of the best-selling luxury coupés with around 46,800 units sold. The history of the large Mercedes Coupés stretches back to 1952 when Mercedes Benz launched the legendary 300 S Coupé - a “car for the world’s elite” was the verdict of the motoring press in its day. In 1956 it was followed by the 220 S Coupé as part of the W 180 model series, which fired the public’s imagination with its unitised “Pon-toon” body in particular. And in 1961 the220 SEb Coupé (W 111 model series) took up the baton with its stylish elongated body.
In 1981 the SEC Coupés from the C 126 model series were based on the then S Class and remained in the Mercedes-Benz line-up for 10 years with over 74,000 units produced. In 1992 the Geneva Motor Show was host to the launch of the successor model (C 140 model series), powered for the first time by a 290 kW/394 hp twelve-cylinder engine. The predecessor to the new CL-Class Coupé celebrated its world premiere in March 1999, setting new standards with leading edge Mercedes innovations such as the Active Body Control (ABC) suspension system and bi-xenon headlamps.
Mercedes-Benz has built over 178,000 luxury coupés since 1952.