***UPDATE: June 7, 2011 – We have TWO NEW 2012 CLS vehicles currently in Stock. One Launch Edition in Palladium Silver, the other in Diamond White Metallic, CLICK THIS LINK FOR PHOTOS OF THESE NEW ARRIVALS!
The CLS has always been one of my favorite modern designs from Mercedes-Benz. It broke real design ground when introduced in last 2005 for the 2006 model year, it was the first ‘four door coupe’. There have been a number of car companies that have come up with similar design concepts, the Volkswagen TT seems to be the most obvious example… it almost looks like a mini CLS, and a pretty good looking little car from Volkswagen. During 2011, the new 2012 model CLS will be available in regular Mercedes-Benz dealer inventory. I was brushing up on some of the changes today and thought I’d share some of them here.
CLS550 Exterior Design Changes
There’s no easy way to go over all of the changes… this isn’t just a mild re-design or updating, this is a completely different body. Every panel is different. The front is very obviously different, the front grille is much more vertical than the outgoing style. This more upright grille is a design cue we see most obviously on the SLS AMG gullwing, but the design cue is trickling down through the entire Mercedes-Benz product line.
The rear of the car has become more angular in my opinion, a little more ‘new E class’ like, with LED tail lamps, front LED daytime running lamps, and full LED head lamps available in the Premium 1 Package (P1 Package). The arch over the rear wheels / fenders are reminiscent of the new E class, which were pulled from classic Mercedes-Benz designs from the 1950s and 60s.
CLS550 Interior Design Changes
Where do we start here? The interior is all new in most respects. It is still a 4 seater with a console in the rear between the two seats, but the front is all new. To me, the front looks a lot like the new E class. The major change is that the gear shift moves from the console to the steering column, like pretty much every other new Mercedes-Benz these day. Space is freed up for good cup holders, storage, and the like. I do like the new steering wheel they’ve added to the CLS, there are several different wheels available, all are pretty good looking.
2012 CLS Colors
There are some cool color options on the new CLS, and metallic paint is standard, so you don’t have to pay $700+ to get a metallic color like most other Mercedes-Benz models. I was surprised to see that the very flashy Alubeam Titanium Metallic paint that is available on the SLS AMG will also be available on the CLS. No price is listed for this paint upgrade, but seeing how it’s a $12,750 option on a new SLS AMG, my guess is it will add quite a bit to the pricetag of a new CLS. Here is a paint chart for your reference:
As I mentioned earlier the new CLS is quite a departure from the first generation CLS… not only in looks, as it has been completely re-designed, the changes aren’t just modest cosmetic changes… it’s a complete redsign. Under the hood the car changes significantly as well. The new CLS will use the newly developed 4.6 liter BiTurbo V8 engine from Mercedes-Benz, not the larger 5.5 liter naturally aspirated V8 that’s been in use since the 2007 model year. Horse power of the twin turbo is 402hp, and increase from the outgoing model’s 382hp.
I’ve only just scratched the surface here with the changes and upgrades to the new 2012 model CLS. Two wheel drive versions should start appearing in showrooms in June of 2011, the 4matic versions will follow a couple of months later towards the end of the Summer. There will be one less excuse NOT to buy the CLS now that you’ll be able to get it as a 4matic, it’s about time!