Mercedes Give Details on the New Third-Gen CLS

The new CLS will offer at least four different engines at launch and three unique suspension offerings.

byDave Bartosiak|
Mercedes-Benz News photo

Fifteen years ago, the first Mercedes-Benz CLS-class was unveiled. With it, Mercedes created a new vehicle segment that combined the sportiness of a coupe with the comfort and functionality of a four-door saloon. Now the company is giving details on the third-generation CLS.

It starts in the engine bay with three six-cylinder models available on day one. This includes a 286-horsepower diesel for the CLS 350D 4MATIC, a 340 hp diesel for the CLS 400D 4MATIC, and a 367 hp gas version for the CLS 450 4MATIC. Mercedes is also planning more entry-level gas and diesel engine variants due out in Fall of this year. The crew at Affalterbach already debuted the AMG CLS 53 4MATIC+ featuring an inline-six that promises 435-horsepower and a ground-pounding 390 pound-feet of torque.

Underneath, the CLS can be outfitted with three different suspensions. The base package includes a four-link front suspension and a five-link rear, then the Dynamic Body Control suspension includes a sporty basic setup with continuously adjustable damping in the front and the rear. The third option is the Air Body Control suspension with three chambers in the spring struts of the rear axle and two in the front. The air suspension also allows you to increase or decrease ride height by a little more than a half inch in either direction. If you’re keeping score at home, that’s already four different engine choices and three unique suspension offerings. Good luck checking the boxes on the spec sheet.

The exterior will keep the CLS’s trademark arched “waistline” or the curved nature which gives the car a teardrop-like side profile. Like pretty much every other Mercedes we’ve seen over the last year or so, the CLS is going to get an upgraded grille as well. That means that diamond grille found on the S-Class and E-Class coupes. Gorden Wagener, Chief Design Officer at Daimler AG, said “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.”

Mercedes went a little overboard on the press release here. There are 15 sections to check out including info on the suspension, driving assistance systems, and a “Special Edition 1” model planned, so that's nice.