New 2018 Mercedes CLS – prices start at £57,510

The forthcoming Mercedes-Benz CLS will go toe-to-toe with Audi’s A7 and the entry-level Porsche Panamera when it goes on sale in 2018

Available to order now, the Mercedes CLS will start from £57,510, with three engines initially offered from launch consisting of two diesels and a sole petrol unit. The 350d and 400d bookend the range in terms of price, listed at £57,510 and £60,410 respectively, with the petrol-powered CLS 450 starting from £57,610. More powerful AMG models will be announced at the Detroit motor show in January 2018.

> Click here for our review of the new Mercedes-Benz E-class 

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New Mercedes CLS trims and equipment 

Mercedes will only offer the CLS in AMG Line trim at the car’s launch, which includes Mercedes’ dual-screen TFT display setup as showcased in the E and S Class. The arrangement consists of two 12.3-inch screens acting as the instrument cluster and infotainment interaction point. 19-inch alloy wheels and Agility Control suspension will also be standard on all CLS models.

Additional technology and luxuries will be available through three upgrade packages: Premium Plus, Comfort and Driving Assistance Plus. Premium Plus adds keyless entry, electrically adjustable (front) seats and steering wheel, but the bulk of the £3895 package price can be attributed to the Burmester surround system and sunroof that are also included.

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The £2495 Comfort package includes nappa leather and Mercedes’ air purification system as well as air suspension. The Driving Assistance Plus package, adding £1695 to the bottom line, features Mercedes-Benz’s semi-autonomous, route detection technology – the vehicle is able to recognise junctions and roundabouts allowing it to adjust its speed accordingly.

New Mercedes CLS engines

Entry point to CLS ownership will be the 350d 4Matic (all CLS will be four-wheel drive), with its 3.0-litre in-line six diesel producing 282bhp and 442lb ft of torque and driving through Mercedes’ nine-speed automatic gearbox. The more powerful 400d produces 335bhp and 442lb ft.

The CLS 450’s petrol engine, producing 362bhp and 396lb ft of torque, is boosted by an electric motor generating 22bhp and an additional 184lb ft – giving the most potent CLS a 0-62mph time of 4.8sec (the 350d and 400d reach the benchmark sprint in 5.7 and 5.0sec respectively). 

The EQ Boost system fitted to the CLS 450 not only provides a performance advantage by adding to the internal combustion engine’s power and torque output during acceleration, but also allows the engine to run in ‘sailing’ mode and will charge the batteries via energy recuperation.

Mercedes CLS chassis and suspension 

Underpinning the new CLS is a four-link front and five-link rear suspension, with steel springs and passive dampers standard across the model line, with Mercedes’ air suspension and adjustable and adaptive dampers available at extra cost. 18-inch alloy wheels will be standard fitment.

 > Click here for more on the all-new Audi A7 

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Staying true to the CLS’s distinctive design, the latest iteration retains its low roofline, arching waistline and hunched rear arches, flat-sided windows and a forward slanting nose. There’s a new wider grille and front LED headlamps (the two-section rear lamps feature the same technology). As with previous CLS models, the latest car boasts an impressive drag figure of just 0.26.

Inside the new CLS is a mix of current E Class and new S Class design and equipment. There’s a 12.3-inch digital display and for the first time the CLS is able to seat three passengers in the rear. 

As the latest addition to Mercedes’ saloon car fleet, the new CLS benefits from a great deal of the latest technology introduced with the new S Class, including Active Brake and Lane Keeping Assist, Attention Assist, Speed Limit Assist and the latest occupant protection system Pre-Safe, which also includes Pre-Safe Sound, which prepares passengers hearing for the anticipated noise of an accident. Multibeam LED headlamps are also fitted.

The first deliveries of the new CLS are scheduled for summer 2018. 

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