Cars > Mercedes > Mercedes-Benz CLS550 2012

By Ketan Patel


Mercedes-Benz CLS550 2012

Mercedes-Benz CLS class is easy to identify with its bold proportions, long hood, frameless side windows and roof sweeping back at an angle towards the rear. The new Mercedes-Benz CLS550 2012 inherits the CLS class features and also has an enhanced front design with new radiator grille dominated by the large central star and LED head lamps. Check it out after the jump.

Mercedes-Benz CLS550 2012

  • Distinctive: elegant coupé outline combined with the expressive front end
  • Lavish: generous use of flawlessly crafted natural materials

Bold proportions: a long hood, compact greenhouse with frameless side windows, dramatic roof sweeping back at an angle towards the rear - these are the hallmarks of the CLS-Class. In 2003 the four-door Coupé was born and the Mercedes- Benz CLS immediately established itself as a new style icon. For 2012 the proportions remain the same but the second generation of this design trendsetter has a completely new look. The 2012 CLS550 goes on-sale in the U.S. during the summer of 2011.

What immediately strikes the eye is the innovative front design, which is reminiscent of the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG. Visually, the radiator grille is not integrated into the hood but is formed separately. This highlights the long, dramatic hood even further. The grille is dominated by the large central star, which underlines the car's relationship to the other coupes of the brand and strengthens the brand identity. The large, elongated dark air inlets with black grilles also add to the vehicle's athletic appearance.

Another distinguishing feature comes in the form of the optional LED High Performance Active headlamps, which are the world's first to offer all the dynamic light functions using LED technology. This innovation boasts an impressive design - inside it is divided into three arrow-shaped layers from top to bottom: the upper layer contains an LED indicator, beneath which is a striking LED side light offering LED low beam functions. The side light can also be seen when the highbeam function is switched on, thereby creating a unique night-time design. The lowest level of the headlamp houses the main beam and nightview functions. A total of 71 LEDs not only provide an unmistakable appearance, but also offer a significantly enhanced view of the road compared with previous systems.

The typical CLS outline, with its elegantly long proportions, is the dominating feature of the new model. The effect of the dramatic, athletic form has been enhanced with a new interplay of lines and areas. The front edge of the structure above the wheelwells slopes off towards the rear. This novel design feature, called the dropping line by designers, represents a new interpretation of a formal design element harking back to the uniquely rich forms present in historic Mercedes sports cars.

A distinctive and muscular sports car-like shoulder line above the rear axle highlights the athletic character of the new CLS. The flared wheel arches resemble the powerful thighs of a feline predator waiting to pounce.

The side view is rounded-off with wide wrap-around tail lights featuring LED technology which are arranged in the form of a linking element to the rear of the vehicle. The shape is emphasized by the broad shoulder line, which is clearly visible from behind and supports the flat hardtop. A wide metal insert adds a further visual highlight at the rear.

The interior: design brings quality to life

The interior of the CLS is also distinguished by a timeless design which combines straightforward elegance with innovative details and handcrafted perfection. An eye-catching feature is the wrap-around effect of the cockpit: a high line sweeps from the driver's door over the instrument cluster and across to the front passenger door. The central display has also been integrated seamlessly into the upper part of the instrument panel. At the same time, the downward sweeping side line on the doors continues the dynamic dropping line of the exterior.

The CLS also lives up to its role as a design icon thanks to the innovative nature of the materials used. These comprise an exciting mixture of satin and high-gloss finishes used on the metal surfaces. Highlights here also include matte galvanized air vents, for example, which form the ideal framework for a high-glosstrimmed analogue clock.

Handcrafted perfection is reflected in details such as the stitched seat covers or the sewn covering for the dashboard. The leather dashboard parts are sewn together by hand in a process which takes several hours, after which they are fitted and upholstered with high-quality foam. Prior to this process, the leather is also heated to preshrink it, so that it will retain its shape even after extreme exposure to direct sunlight.

The refined sportiness of the interior of the CLS is further reflected in the generous use of high-quality trim elements. They are located on the instrument panel support of the center console and on parts of the door linings. Customers can choose between two exclusive types of wood: high-gloss brown burl walnut or high-gloss black ash. The wood has been perfectly fitted around difficult contours for a masterful handcrafted finish, and the wood trim has been matched according to grain, as part of an elaborate selection process, to create a harmonized overall impression.

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