Tuesday 3 July 2012

Road - Five Door CLS

Jaguar has its ‘Sportbrake’ and now Mercedes-Benz has its ‘Shooting Brake’. Based on the CLS, Merc reckons this is a sports car with four doors and a tailgate!

However, its desirability as a chase car is somewhat limited. In standard trim, the luggage compartment is lined with high-quality carpet and trimmed with hand-stitched leather appointments. Optional aluminium loading rails might protect the surfaces but there is another option – a wooden luggage floor. Using cherry tree wood and inlaid smoked oak with aluminium rails, the finish wouldn’t look out of place in Cheryl Cole’s boudoir.

At the front of the cabin, customers will have to choose between, five trim designs, three qualities of leather and three exclusive wood finishes - high-gloss brown burr walnut, high-gloss black ash and satin-finish light-brown poplar. And it will all be tastefully topped off with touches of piano lacquer trim – and some porcelain!

The loadbox is no Volvo 740 but it does offer between 590 and 1550 litres while the standard rear air suspension will ensure it can cope with four wheels and a trolley jack. As if.

There are two engines to choose from, both with the 7G-TRONIC PLUS automatic transmission as well as the ECO start/stop function.

The entry-level model is the CLS250 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY producing 204 hp. Combined fuel consumption is 53.3 mpg and CO2 emissions of 139 grams per kilometre. The six cylinder CLS 350 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY produces 265 hp and will be good for the 0 to 60 sprint in 6.5 seconds.

Another standard fitting is electro-mechanical power steering EPS (Electric Power Steering) which can be combined with Active Park Assist to help drivers detect parking spaces and park the car itself.

A few weeks ago this Blog highlighted Merc’s work with its Intelligent Lighting System, and the new CLS Shooting Brake will incorporate LED High Performance headlamps and its innovative Adaptive Highbeam Assist, which should cut down the dazzle effect for oncoming motorists.

Four wheels and a trolley jack? I don't think so!
And as we draw ever closer to driverless motoring, Merc has a number of electronic airds which point the way forward. Active Blind Spot Assist and Active Lane Keeping Assist are available, in combination with DISTRONIC PLUS, BAS PLUS and the PRE‑SAFE® Brake. Both assistance systems are not only able to detect an unintentional lane change or vehicles in the blind spot, but can also correct the direction of travel by gentle brake intervention if the driver ignores the visual or audible danger warnings.

Price? We’ll just have to wait.

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