2018 Mercedes CLS debuts fresh styling, new straight-six engines

It’s the premium four-door coupe you know and love updated for modern tastes

Mercedes has taken the wraps off its all-new, completely redesigned third-gen 2018 CLS four-door coupe at the 2017 LA auto show and it’s more of what you expect if you’re familiar with the outgoing model.

Let’s first take a look at the elephant in the corner: its styling. Yes, the new CLS’s side profile is cleaner and more elegant than that of the car it replaces, but its front and rear fascias may polarize opinions much more.

It adopts the design language that debuted on the AMG GT sedan concept and which we’ll also get to see on the next A-Class sedan. We can’t say whether or not it’s good or bad, but it doesn’t strike you as immediately elegant as some previous Mercedes designs and we’re curious to see how the market will react to it.


Inside the new CLS there’s nothing to complain about as it’s basically the same design you’d find in an E-Class coupe which is one of the best interiors in the business (check out our E400 coupe road test with full gallery). Judging by the photos, it appears to be lifted straight out of that car and we have no problem with that whatsoever.

Under its long, elegant bonnet, the CLS hides all-new engines: two diesels (CLS 350d and CLS400d) and one gasoline engine (CLS 450) all of which get 4MATIC all-wheel drive.

The diesels are all-new straight-six three-liter units with 286 PS / 600 Nm and 340 PS / 700 Nm respectively and both are said to return 5.6 l/100km on the combined cycle.

The new gasoline unit is also a new three-liter straight-six has 370 PS / 500 Nm and can accelerate to 100 km/h in 4.8 seconds; its claimed combined fuel return is 7.5 l/100km.

Later on it is believed a CLS 53 AMG model will join the range which will use the same engine as the 450 as well as an electric motor to achieve 429-horse output. It is believed this hot model will debut at the 2018 Detroit auto show.

The all-new 2018 Mercedes CLS will be rolled out across the globe next year and more details will be revealed closer to its showroom debut. No shooting brake version is planned - the sedan will be the only CLS body style for this generation.

Check out our rendering of what a CLS shooting brake could have looked like

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