The Mercedes-Benz CLS was introduced for the 2005 model year and went on sale in the United States in January 2005. Based on the previous-generation E-Class , the four-door coupe started a whole niche in the automotive industry, soon to be followed by Audi and BMW . The first-generation model was offered with a bevy of V-6 and V-8 engines that delivered as much as 507 horsepower. The second-generation coupe arrived in 2010, but the U.S.-spec version didn’t arrive until the 2012 model year . Unlike its predecessor, the current model gained a 4.7-liter V-8 and a 2.1-liter, inline-four diesel to go with the already available 3.0-liter oil burner. The Shooting Brake body style was introduced in late 2012, but without being green lighted for the U.S. market. In 2015, the CLS is set for a facelift.
Four years since showing up in global showrooms, the current generation 2015 CLS is getting its well-deserved facelift. The update’s real focus is the interior, where a new color display is in place to put an end to an endless string of complaints in regards to the coupe’s infotainment system. A couple of new engines are also on the table, although at least one of them won’t be available in the United States.
Updated 6/19/2014: Mercedes-Benz has announced the UK pricing for the 2015 CLS Class. The Coupé starts at £46,500 ($79,180 as of 6/19/2014) for the CLS 220 BlueTEC and peaks at £86,500 ($147,293 as of 6/19/2014) for the CLS 63 AMG S. The same models in the Shooting Brake start at £48,080 ($81,871 as of 6/19/2014) and £87,000 ($148,144 as of 6/19/2014). There is no mention yet on the U.S. pricing.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Mercedes CLS-Class.
The side intakes have grown in size, and while the trapezoidal center piece sports the same shape, it is narrower and adds a bit of aggressiveness to the bumper
As expected, the facelift didn’t bring major changes to the CLS’ exterior, aside from the innovative Multibeam LED headlights. Similar to the Matrix LED system introduced by Audi on the A8, the technology uses information coming from a camera located behind the windshield to optimize lighting according to the road ahead and oncoming traffic. Other than that, visual changes are limited to the usual nips and tucks attributed to a facelift — the sheet becomes crisper while retaining its familiar looks.
Up front, a revised bumper changes the intake configuration of the lower apron. The side intakes have grown in size, and while the trapezoidal center piece sports the same shape, it is narrower and adds a bit of aggressiveness to the bumper. The large front grille is less angular and the headlamps are a tad skinnier. Speaking of headlamps, the unit also incorporate daytime running lights previously mounted in the bumper.
Around back, changes are almost nonexistent, with only the bumper sporting a different shape. The area right above the diffuser-like piece is smoother now and provides the CLS’ rear end with a milder appearance. The taillights are nearly identical, although Mercedes added a few extra LED units behind those plastic covers. The side view remained unchanged, which comes at no surprise really.
CLS Shooting Brake
Same goes for the CLS Shooting Brake, which was unveiled alongside the four-door coupe. The same subtle modifications can be spotted inside and out, while the wagon’s load capacity was kept at 54.7 cubic feet (1,550 liters). The good news, though, is that the Shooting Brake is finally crossing the pond to the United States. The German manufacturer has yet to confirm that officially, but the commercial you can watch above shows the wagon wandering the streets of New York with Michigan plates and mandatory amber lights.
2015 CLS Class Versus 2014 CLS Class
Things get a lot better inside, where you can find a number of new features and gadgets. The most important add-on is the eight-inch color display that comes to replace the old unit. Mercedes got a lot of heat for the small infotainment system fitted in the second-gen CLS and it seems the Germans are finally living up to their potential. The new screen brings the dashboard to current luxury standards and enables users to easily browse through its functions even when having to keep an eye on the road.
The most important add-on is the 8-inch color display that comes to replace the old unit
The cabin’s sporty and elegant feel has been enhanced further by means of redesigned, three-spoke steering wheel and a revised center console. The unit has four buttons instead of two, making navigating through options a less complicated task.
Five interior colors and six trim and leather finishes will be available on the 2015 CLS at launch, but expect host of bespoke materials and configurations to roll out in the future. As with most Mercs, the CLS will too benefit from AMG-crafted individualization options and packages. All you need is a fat wallet.
Five powertrains make up the facelifted CLS lineup, two of which are brand-new
Five powertrains make up the facelifted CLS lineup, two of which are brand-new. The first one is a diesel mill that displaces 2.1 liters and sits at the bottom of the range. The four-banger cranks out 167 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque and adds the 220 BlueTEC designation to the CLS. As you might have already guessed, this unit won’t make it to the U.S. Right above the 220 BlueTEC sits the 250 BlueTEC. Motivated by the same 2.1-liter turbodiesel, this model benefits from 201 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of twist. The third and most powerful diesel in the lineup comes in the form of a 3.0-liter V-6 that pumps 254 ponies and 457 pound-feet to the wheels.
The CLS 400 comes to replace the previous CLS 350 and carries a biturbo, 3.0-liter V-6 under its bonnet. The engine is rated at 328 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque
Moving over to gasoline engines, the CLS 400 comes to replace the previous CLS 350 and carries a biturbo, 3.0-liter V-6 under its bonnet. The engine is rated at 328 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque, which account for an extra 27 horses and 81 pound-feet compared to the previous model, respectively. Lastly, the range-topping CLS will take the streets with the same 402 horsepower and 442 pound-feet on tap. Of course, there’s more power to be had from the CLS63 AMG.
Transmission-wise, all non-4MATIC models except the CLS 400 will be equipped with the company’s new 9G-Tronic, nine-speed automatic transmission. On the other hand, the all-wheel-drive versions, including those scheduled to cross the Pond to the U.S., will keep their 7G-Tronic Plus, seven-speed gearbox until the 9G-Tronic is modified to work with 4MATIC technology.
|CLS 220 BlueTEC||CLS 250 BlueTEC||CLS 350 BlueTEC||CLS 400||CLS 500|
|Type||2.1-liter 4-cylinder turbodiesel||2.1-liter 4-cylinder turbodiesel||3.0-liter V-6 diesel||3.0-liter V-6 bi-turbo|
|Horsepower||170 HP||204 HP||258 HP||333 HP||408 HP|
|Torque||295 LBS-FT||369 LBS-FT||457 LBS-FT||354 LBS-FT||442 LBS-FT|
U.S. pricing hasn’t been revealed as of 06/19/2014, but the Germans have released pricing information for both the Coupe and the Shooting Brake in the United Kingdom. The 2015 CLS Coupe retails from £46,500 ($79,180 as of 6/19/2014) in the base 220 BlueTEC guise. This sticker actually makes it cheaper than the pre-facelift model, but bear in mind that the entry-level version sports a smaller engine. Opt for a gasoline engine and pricing begins at £55,850 ($95,031), while the range-topping CLS63 AMG S fetches at least £86,500 ($147,240).
Moving over to the CLS Shooting Brake, the base 220 BlueTEC kicks off at £48,080 ($81,881), while the 350 BlueTEC starts from £51,400 ($87,530). Lastly, the CLS63 AMG S, which is the only wagon with a gasoline engine, retails from £87,000 ($148,091).
Expect the U.S.-spec 2015 CLS Coupe with V-8 power to wear a sticker between $77,000 and $87,000, with the CLS63 AMG to fetch more than $100,000.
2015 CLS-Class Coupé Prices (UK)
|Model||Price (RRP OTR)|
|CLS 220 BlueTEC, diesel – 2,143 cc, four-cylinder||£46,500|
|CLS 350 BlueTEC, diesel – 2,987 cc, six-cylinder||£49,950|
|CLS 400, petrol, 3,498 cc, six-cylinder||£55,850|
|CLS 63 AMG S, petrol, 5,461 cc, eight-cylinder||£86,500|
2015 CLS Shooting Brake Prices (UK)
|Model||Price (RRP OTR)|
|CLS 220 BlueTEC, diesel – 2,143 cc, four-cylinder||£48,080|
|CLS 350 BlueTEC, diesel – 2,987 cc, six-cylinder||£51,400|
|CLS 63 AMG S, petrol, 5,461 cc, eight-cylinder||£87,000|
Audi came a bit late to the four-door coupe party, but the A7 is sleek and powerful enough to give the CLS a run for its money. Although not as slippery as the CLS, the A7 is represented by an elegant and fresh design that keeps it away from Audi’s dull styling language. Once inside, the A7 will steal your heart with its enormous amount of leather and wood and the craftmanship that put them all together.
Two engines are available in the U.S. The supercharged, 3.0-liter TFSI delivers 310 horsepower and 325 pound-feet of torque and sends the A7 flying from 0 to 60 mph in 5.4 seconds. With this engine under the hood, you are likely to get 28 mpg on the highway and 18 mpg in the city. The other mill is a 3.0-liter turbodiesel rated at 240 horses and 428 pound-feet. Although 0-to-60 mph times drops to 5.5 seconds on this model, fuel economy goes up to 38 mpg highway and 24 mpg city. The A7 is priced from $64,500.
Gallery Audi A7
The BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe seems to be the least appealing of the pack. The Munich-developed sedan won’t win any beauty contests, while the cabin is a tad too sober for its sporty character. We say "sporty" because the BMW packs more power than its competitors. Besides the 3.0-liter inline-six that churns 315 horsepower and 330 pound-feet of torque in the 640i, there’s a 4.4-liter, V-8 mill that takes things to a whole new level in the 650i.
The brawnier unit generates a whopping 445 horsepower and 480 pound-feet of torque, sending the 6 Series Gran Coupe to a 4.6-second sprint from naught to 60 mph. When equipped with the company’s all-wheel-drive system, the benchmark drops to 4.5 seconds. That’s an achievement the CLS and A7 can’t brag about without an AMG or RS badge, respectively. But the extra power and speed don’t come cheap, as the 6 Series Gran Coupe retails from $77,900.
Gallery BMW 6-Series Gran Coupe
Granted, the 2015 CLS is not the most exciting facelift on a luxury car. A pair of bumpers and a diamond radiator grille won’t knock anyone’s socks off, but the new infotainment display screen and the Multibeam LEDs will help the CLS stay fresh for at least a couple of years. As it turns out, we’re still not getting a diesel engine and we’ll probably have to settle for the gasoline V-6 and V-8 units. On the flip side, the Shooting Brake is very likely to hit U.S. shores, which is enough to keep us on our toes until further notice.
- Multibeam LED headlamps are a cool feature
- New infotainment display
- Revised interior with new customization options
- Upgraded V-6 engine with more power and torque
- Shooting Brake finally coming to the U.S.?
- Visual facelift is too mild
- Still no diesel for the U.S.
- Still waiting for pricing and availability
Gallery Mercedes CLS-Class
Mercedes-Benz has extensively revised the four-door CLS Coupé and the CLS Shooting Brake. Both design icons now feature a honed front section. Their further upgraded interior boasts lots of new, perfectly handcrafted details, combining contemporary luxury with passionate sportiness. They also bring ground-breaking technical innovations to the road. The futuristic MULTIBEAM LED headlamps open up new dimensions in lighting systems. High-performance, precision LED modules automatically provide the best possible illumination, whatever the road and traffic conditions. Cutting-edge technology on-board also includes the 9G-TRONIC 9-speed automatic transmission, new, powerful engines, intelligently networked driver assistance and safety systems as well as a progressive multimedia system with internet. The AMG variants CLS 63 AMG Coupé and Shooting Brake developing up to 430 kW (585 hp) assume pole position in the power output stakes. The diverse new Mercedes connect me online services are also included on all models.
Mercedes-Benz founded the four-door coupé segment ten years ago with the CLS, thus underlining its leading role in automotive design. The CLS combined for the first time the elegance and dynamism of a coupé with the comfort and functionality of a saloon. It was also the first vehicle to offer dynamic LED High Performance headlamps as an option, turning it into the lighting icon. In 2012, Mercedes‑Benz built on the success of the CLS with the CLS Shooting Brake. With this sporty five-door model, the premium brand from Stuttgart once again demonstrated its concept creativity. As an extraordinary form of a sports car with five seats and a large tailgate, the CLS Shooting Brake is an attractive companion for active people that shy away from the mainstream and who are unwilling to sacrifice sportiness or luggage space as part of stylish touring. In this way the Shooting Brake set another highlight in the line of innovative Mercedes-Benz luxury vehicles. Both the CLS Coupé and the CLS Shooting Brake have long since established themselves as style icons with particular charisma, and will also continue to be unique in their segment.
Prof Dr Thomas Weber, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG responsible for Group Research and Mercedes-Benz Cars Development: "With the CLS Coupé and the CLS Shooting Brake we have built design icons which also set the pulse racing faster in their latest incarnation courtesy of their enthralling lines. With new high-tech ingredients such as the innovative MULTIBEAM LED headlamps which start a new chapter in lighting design, the nine-speed automatic transmission or the progressive multimedia system, both models also define new cutting-edge technology."
The scintillating design of the CLS-Class with its exciting proportions has been subtly adapted to high-tech aspirations. It steadfastly remains a compelling proposition with its long bonnet, narrow window line with frameless side windows and dynamically downwards sloping roof. The CLS Shooting Brake offers additional load capacity with up to 1550 litres of space for luggage or sport and leisure equipment thanks to its sporty, flat roof that extends through to the rear and five doors.
Overall the design of the latest generation of the CLS Coupé and CLS Shooting Brake comes across as even more dynamic. This is thanks to a new, expressive diamond radiator grille, a striking front bumper with large air intakes, MULTIBEAM LED headlamps as well as new, slightly darkened tail lights with multi-level function.
New dimensions in lighting systems
Both models now come as standard with all-LED headlamps in a new design. Alternatively both vehicle models are available as an option with the new MULTIBEAM LED headlamps as designed and developed by Mercedes-Benz. Mercedes-Benz is opening a new chapter in lighting systems with this innovation. Since the MULTIBEAM LED technology combines the very best of today’s lighting technologies and can optimally adjust the light distribution instantly and automatically to virtually any traffic situation, it always ensures thus far unrivalled broad and bright illumination of the road surface and edge of the carriageway for high performance and precision without dazzling other car drivers.
The camera-based Adaptive Highbeam Assist Plus provides the information for the illumination. If it detects illuminated oncoming vehicles or vehicles ahead, it drives each of the individual 24 high-performance LEDs in a matrix light source electronically so that individual areas of the road are specifically masked in accordance with the particular situation. The headlamp control function combines the matrix light source with the tried-and-trusted technology of the LED Intelligent Light System, thus increasing the precision of today’s matrix light sources and setting up a main beam gap with minimal width. This prevents other drivers from being dazzled, while drivers in the CLS Coupé and in the CLS Shooting Brake always benefit from the best possible – in other words brightest illumination of the road and road verges. The anti-dazzle main beam can be switched on permanently. Thus the new MULTIBEAM LED headlamps open up new dimensions in safety from which other road users can mutually benefit.
In addition to the camera on the windscreen, this new lighting system uses four control units per vehicle, which calculate the ideal light pattern 100 times per second and control all 24 high-performance LEDs in each precision LED module quickly and individually. Each LED is dimmable in 255 stages.
New MULTIBEAM LED headlamps provide exceptionally fast and precise, anti-dazzle continuous main beam and light up the road surface and its edges much more brightly in many situations.
Best visibility on bends and roundabouts
As well as the high-performance, precision LED module, each MULTIBEAM LED headlamp also features a module for the low-beam headlamp, which can be swivelled outwards by up to twelve degrees. This provides an active light function, which is also camera-controlled, with unprecedented characteristics. For instance, it offers a preview function which already swivels the active light function when the driver has yet not turned the wheels. Thus it provides optimum illumination of the bend early on. The active light function already swivels back to the straight-ahead position before the end of the bend according to the particular situation. This allows the driver to identify dangers earlier when entering and exiting bends. The anticipatory control allows an additional range of between 30 and 60 metres depending on the traffic situation.
The roundabout light is also unique, which activates the cornering light function modules on the left and right before entering a roundabout in order to provide the best visibility on all sides at an early stage. The navigation system provides the headlamps with details of the locations of roundabouts along the route.
Friendly welcome: welcome home function
As a charming unusual function, the new MULTIBEAM LED headlamps use their multifunction optical fibres not just as daytime running lamps, turn signal lamp and turn signal lamp, but they also welcome the driver by bringing this optical fibre to life with a friendly blue light when the vehicle is opened.
Sporty interior with contemporary luxury
Ample space, unadorned, sporty elegance, perfect craftsmanship and high-quality materials exert the stylistic influence on the interior of the CLS family. The new generation reinforces this impression by emphasising sportiness, exclusivity and functionality even more.
The new free-standing colour display in the head unit with its 20.3 cm screen diagonal (8 inch) adds to the state-of-the-art feel and will help define the dashboard’s contemporary looks. Other new features include a redesigned three-spoke sports steering wheel and a host of exquisite details which underscore the interior’s high quality both in visual and tactile terms. The central control panel in the centre console has four instead of the previous two buttons, thus requiring fewer operating steps in many cases. Five attractive interior colours, six trim finishes as well as grades of leather ranging from leather to Exclusive PASSION leather will be available in future and offer a host of potential individualisation options.
Fulfilling personal preferences
The new AMG Line Plus supplements the previously available design and equipment lines Exterior Sports package and AMG Line, thus extending individualisation options to include a very sportily oriented version which expressively emphasises dynamism and exclusivity. A special Night package is scheduled to give buyers further choice at the end of the year. New designo interior packages are also available.
Efficient, sporty engines
Thrilling dynamism and exemplary efficiency – those are the strengths of the five engines available in the new generation of the CLS-Class. All fulfil the Euro 6 standard. A new addition in this class is the CLS 220 BlueTEC with four-cylinder diesel engine featuring fourth-generation common rail direct injection, two-stage turbocharging and BlueTEC technology. It produces 125 kW (170 hp) and offers maximum torque of 400 Nm. 150 kW (204 hp) and torque of 500 Nm are on tap from the four-cylinder diesel unit in the CLS 250 BlueTEC. The V6 diesel unit in the CLS 350 BlueTEC exceeds these figures with 190 kW (258 hp) and torque of 620 Nm.
Equally new is the V6 petrol engine with turbocharging in the CLS 400 with a 3.5 litre displacement and biturbo drive. Thanks to its output potential and its phenomenal torque at low engine speeds it sets new standards in its segment. Compared to its predecessor with a naturally aspirated engine it produces 20 kW more with 245 kW (333 hp). Its torque increases by 110 Nm to 480 Nm and is available in the wide engine speed range of 1200 to 4000 rpm. The CLS 500 with 300 kW (408 hp) and up to 600 Nm of torque leads the field in the power output ratings.
Four instead of the previous two models will be available in future with permanent all-wheel drive. Newcomers include the CLS 250 BlueTEC 4MATIC and the CLS 400 4MATIC
Maximum performance and efficiency: the AMG 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine
410 kW (557 hp) to 430 kW (585 hp) and 720 to 800 newton metres – the AMG 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine ranks among the world’s most efficient series-production eight-cylinder engines when it comes to peak output, torque and fuel consumption. The CLS 63 AMG with 410 kW (557 hp) and rear-wheel drive consumes 9.9 litres per 100 kilometres (NEDC combined) (231 grams CO2 per kilometre). The variant with 410 kW and performance-oriented AMG 4MATIC all-wheel drive and the S-Model with 430 kW (585 hp) and all-wheel drive come in only slightly above at 10.4 to 10.6 litres per 100 km (243 grams to 248 grams CO2/km). All CLS 63 AMG models already meet the second stage of the EU6 emissions standard.
New automatic transmission with nine gears
Cutting-edge technology also comes in the shape of 9G-TRONIC, the world’s first 9-speed automatic transmission with hydrodynamic torque converter in the premium segment, which is used in the CLS 220 BlueTEC, CLS 250 BlueTEC, CLS 350 BlueTEC and CLS 500. This innovation builds on the strengths of the 7G-TRONIC PLUS, which hitherto has set the benchmark in terms of efficiency, comfort and dynamism. With nine forward gears the 9G‑TRONIC manages to reduce fuel consumption, while further enhancing shift comfort and agility.
Hallmark Mercedes high level of safety
To make top-class safety available for everyone, the CLS-Class will in future be fitted with a host of new assistance systems along with existing systems with upgraded functionality. Standard-fit features include the COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST PLUS, which can help prevent rear-end collisions – if necessary through autonomous braking.
The state-of-the-art assistance systems from the S-Class can also be fitted as an option. These include DISTRONIC PLUS with Steering Assist and Stop&Go Pilot, BAS PLUS with Cross-Traffic Assist, PRE-SAFE® Brake with pedestrian detection, PRE-SAFE® PLUS, Active Blind Spot Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist, Traffic Sign Assist, Active Parking Assist with PARKTRONIC including lateral parking manoeuvres and a 360° camera.
A completely new multimedia generation will offer intuitive operation in the CLS Coupé and in the CLS Shooting Brake, including elaborate animations and visual effects which present all the functions in a clear and highly attractive manner.
The Audio 20 CD or optional COMAND Online infotainment systems are available in combination with the new, free-standing display in the head unit with its 20.3 cm screen diagonal (8 inch). Both enable the internet to be surfed without restrictions when the vehicle is stationary. The prerequisite is a Bluetooth®-capable mobile phone with data option. Equally new is a now standard and an integrated Media Interface to connect an iPod® and iPhone®.
In conjunction with COMAND Online, Mercedes-Benz Apps such as Weather, GoogleTM Local Search with StreetView and Panoramio, destination/route download and Facebook can be used while on the move. Audio and video playback is possible from various sources, e.g. via Bluetooth®, from the Apple iPod® and iPhone®, from SD card, USB stick or CD/DVD.
COMAND Online also provides the LINGUATRONIC voice control system; digital TV/radio reception is also available as an option.
In the version with pre-installation the basic Audio 20 CD system can be supplemented with the user-friendly Garmin® MAP PILOT navigation system. Its strengths include 3D views with exact representation of streets and buildings and photo-realistic junction and lane assistants. The navigation software and the map data are stored on an SD card, which is simply inserted in the dedicated slot of the Audio 20 CD with preparation for the Garmin® MAP PILOT.
COMAND Online with fast 3D hard-disc navigation, topographical map display, photo-realistic 3D buildings and 3D map rotations as well as display of NASA satellite images provides a decidedly sensuous experience. System features include an animated compass and display of Google Maps on the head unit. The navigation system can also provide real-time information about the situation on the roads when it receives its traffic data in COMAND Online via the internet by means of the Live Traffic Information service.
Telephony via Bluetooth® with HD Voice capability as standard
The basic Audio 20 CD system and COMAND Online both support HD Voice-capable basic telephony, which connects the mobile phone to the vehicle via a standardised Bluetooth® interface. HD Voice provides much better voice quality. In conjunction with convenience telephony the high-speed LTE network can also be used in future if a compatible smartphone with a relevant contract is used.
Mercedes connect me – new online connection to the car
With the new-generation CLS-Class a new package of services is also being launched in Europe under the name "Mercedes connect me". Mercedes-Benz emergency call, accident, maintenance and breakdown management are available via a standard-fit KOM module with its own SIM card fitted in the vehicle. Customers can also connect to their vehicle via the internet anytime, anywhere via "connect.mercedes.me" and, for example, check how full the tank is.