2012 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class official photos and details released [video]

Upcoming 2012 CLS-Class features a new design that give it a more muscular look than its predecessor

Mercedes-Benz has officially released photos and details on the upcoming 2012 CLS-Class which will make its debut at the Paris motor show in October.

In these official photos we now get to see the design of the 2012 CLS-Class in its entirety. The flared wheel arches along with the broad shoulder lines and a flattened nose give the CLS a far more muscular look than its sleeker predecessor.

New technology on the CLS-Class includes the LED headlamps, which feature a total of 71 individual lights. The lights are split into three sections, with the upper set forming the turn indicator, the middle serving as a low beam side light which also works when the high beams are on. There are the headlights themselves which do the night lighting.

Inside is an interior finish done with some human touches. The wrap-around dash goes from door to door and holds the instrument panel and display screen. There are also matte galvanized vents and an analogue clock. The handcraft is featured in the stitched seat covers as well as in the dashboard and Mercedes-Benz has gone through the trouble of preshrinking the leather it uses on the CLS so it won't tighten up in the heat.

High-gloss wood panels are also embedded inside the cabin - on the dash, center console and door linings. Buyers have a choice of brown burl walnut or black ash.

What Mercedes-Benz hasn't yet announced is which power plants will make it under the bonnet of the CLS. But we can expect the usual suspects - a 250 CDI with 204 PS (150 kW / 201 hp), a 350 CDI with 265 PS (195 kW / 261 hp), a 3.5-liter V6 with 306 PS (225 kW / 301 hp) and a 4.7-liter twin-turbo V8 with 435 PS (320 kW / 429 hp). Mercedes-Benz's 4Matic all-wheel drive system will likely be made available on most of the torque-ier models.

We can expect those engine details to be made public once the 2012 CLS-Class debuts at the Paris motor show which runs October 2 - 17, 2010.

Source: Mercedes-Benz

World premiere at the 2010 Paris motor show

August 22, 2010

  • The CLS brings refined performance to life
  • Embodiement of the Mercedes-Benz brand values
  • Athletic proportions, strong design language
  • Expressive front design features central star in the grille
  • Dynamic character line flowing back towards the rear
  • Elegance with handcrafted details in the interior

A generation ahead: The CLS-Class created a new vehicle category in 2003 by combining the elegance and expressiveness of a coupé with the comfort and functionality of a sedan. The CLS delighted the public, astounded the competition and created a new style icon: for years the CLS has endured as the only four-door coupé in its class, and since October 2004 it has been the car of choice for around 170,000 buyers worldwide. "Customers all over the world benefited from our bold move to launch a completely new vehicle concept onto the market", explains a delighted Dr. Joachim Schmidt, member of the board of Mercedes-Benz Cars, Sales & Marketing. "And with its exciting design, the new edition of the CLS also benefits from the fact that we are a whole generation ahead of the competition with our four-door Coupé."

Celebrating its world premiere at the Paris motor show (October 2 - 17, 2010), the 2012 CLS-Class builds on the pioneering role of its predecessor with a fresh new interpretation. "The new CLS points the way forward for the future perceptible design idiom of Mercedes-Benz", explains Professor Gorden Wagener, head of design at Mercedes-Benz. "At the same time it takes its inspiration from the great tradition of stylish, refined sportiness which has always been a feature of Mercedes coupés."

Exterior: classic Coupé styling with distinctive front

The proportions remain as spectacular as ever: long hood, tightly-styled frameless side windows and a dynamic roof sweeping back at an angle towards the rear. The four-door Coupé from Mercedes-Benz immediately made its mark in 2003 as a new style icon. Though the proportions are the same, the second generation of this design trendsetter has a completely new look.

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 formed separately. This further highlights the long, sporty hood. The grille is dominated by the large central star, which unites the car with other Mercedes-Benz coupés and also enhances brand identity. The large, elongated dark air inlets with black grilles also add to the vehicle's athletic appearance.

Design brings high-tech features to life

Another distinguishing feature comes in the form of the full LED headlamps, which are the world's first to offer all of the dynamic light functions using LED technology. This innovation boasts an impressive design - inside they are 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 offers LED low beam functions. The side light can also be seen when the high beam is activated, thereby creating a unique night-time design. The lowest level of the headlamp houses the main beam and nightview functions. A total of 71 LED's provide an unmistakable appearance as well as a significantly enhanced view of the road compared with previous systems.

The typical CLS outline, with its elegantly long proportions, is the dominating attribute of the new model. The effect of the dynamic, athletic form has been enhanced with a new interplay of lines and surfaces. A unique "dropping line", which begins above the front wheel-wells and slopes downward towards the rear, represents a new interpretation of a renowned design hallmark of historic Mercedes sports cars.
A distinctive and muscular sports car-like shoulder line above the rear axle highlights the athletic character of the 2012 CLS. The flared wheel arches resemble the powerful thighs of a feline predator waiting to pounce.

The side profile is rounded off with wide wrap-around tail lights featuring LED technology -- 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 roof. A wide metal insert adds a further visual highlight at the rear.

The interior: design brings quality to life

The interior of the 2012 CLS-Class is also distinguished by a timeless design which combines discreet elegance with innovative details and handcrafted perfection. The eye-catching cockpit features a wrap-around dashboard sweeping from the driver's door over the instrument panel support and across to the front passenger door. The central display has also been integrated seamlessly into the upper part of the instrument panel.

The CLS also lives up to its role as a design icon thanks to the innovative nature of the materials used, including a mixture of satin and high-gloss finishes used on the metal surfaces. Highlights also include matte galvanized air vents which ideally compliment a high-gloss-trimmed analogue clock.

Handcrafted perfection is reflected in details such as the stitched seat covers and dashboard. The individual parts of the leather dashboard are sewn together by hand in a process which takes several hours, after which they are fitted and upholstered with high-quality padding. 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.

Around four animal skins are processed for each CLS. The particularly exclusive 1.6-millimetre thick semi-aniline premium leather meets the highest standards of both look and feel. The natural pore structure remains intact thanks to a light pigmentation, and the leather has an especially warm and soft feel to it. Premium leather requires a very precise manual selection process and therefore a high amount of raw leather.

The refined interior of the CLS is further reflected in the generous use of high-quality trim elements, located on the instrument panels, center console and door linings. Customers can choose between 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 sophisticated selection process to create a consistent overall impression.

For an even more progressive look, black piano lacquer or carbon fiber trim elements are also available. Handcrafted as well, up to seven layers are applied and polished for the piano lacquer trim until the high-gloss finish is achieved.

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Comments (56)

Captain Scarlett Captain Scarlett
looks nice. I didn't really get on with the old one.
Aug 28th, 2010 2:07am
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lambocop lambocop
You know! it look much much better when the shot shows people standing next to it. It shows the car's real size as other pictures show it really bigger than it actually is. I think in person it will look stunning
Aug 24th, 2010 3:22pm
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4g63 4g63
sonata looks better!
Aug 24th, 2010 2:32pm
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johnny232 johnny232
I see a little SLS in the front there grill. It looks like car manufacturers are loosing their creativity and are starting to make their model range identical
Aug 24th, 2010 10:27am
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bordeauxman1 bordeauxman1
Aug 24th, 2010 8:12am
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It surely doesn't look ugly, but I like the looks of the old one more, it has such gentle roundings. But I understand they couldn't do that since mercedes has a more boxy design language.
Aug 23rd, 2010 11:41pm
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HommeStar HommeStar
It's absolutely superb and quite frankly much more stunning than its predecessor. I don't see how anyone would find this "ugly" - "worst update ever". B.S.! Correction - Korean cars and the like try to look like MB!
Aug 23rd, 2010 11:24pm
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fire_bird fire_bird
its like the korean cars
Aug 23rd, 2010 10:41pm
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Mister Stig Mister Stig
Pass the sick bucket!
Aug 23rd, 2010 8:35pm
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bone91 bone91
looks nice. i just don't like the big grill in front.
Aug 23rd, 2010 7:11pm
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velsatis velsatis
Unfortunnatly I see myself reading comments of VW and BMW filled with nice words about their new products and these bring absolutly nothing new in terms of design, after the bangle era BMW are starting to go the same way we see VW and Audi design there cars, meaning, the laziest design studios in the world Mercedes thou presents real design, u see the family look in their cars yet they all have their own design/personnality, shouldn't we apreciate that from a manufacturer?? I see a beautifull car, a sculpture on wheels and most of all I apreciate their work in it, every line/curve just amazing. Congratulations I cant wait to see it live when I am sure it will look even better
Aug 23rd, 2010 4:30pm
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maybe its better to wait for real launch.....but i agree with most comments,its not a beautiful car.....its not a beautiful mercedes.but i am waiting....every thing may be change.........
Aug 23rd, 2010 4:26pm
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cnpgs cnpgs
This seems to be getting quite a-lot of negative comments, which I respect... but I think other users should also respect the fact that style is a very subjective thing, meaning that different people have different tastes and opinions. IMO this looks very good; ok, I admit that I slightly prefer its predecessor because the new one isn't as elegant or simple as the C219, but it's far from ugly... You also need to remember 2 things: 1. It will probably look much better in the metal, so I will reserve final judgement until I do. 2. The combo of body colour, wheel design and other customisation options (ex. some sort of sport package) is a very important factor which can make a car look good or bad; even the C219 had a few bad spec/colour/rim combinations...
Aug 23rd, 2010 4:15pm
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rendra_htbarat rendra_htbarat
..picture don't do justice for mercedes benz,i think it will look fantastic in real life. Those sculpted side panel will look really awesome under the normal light. You haters are going to eat your own word soon enough ..do want to see " the ugly one " ? look at the a7 with its stupid rear half
Aug 23rd, 2010 2:58pm
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bmw2002m bmw2002m
What is this rubbish about the interior being crap!!?? I think you have to be biased or thick to look at the interior and think it looks crap - it looks AMAZING!! Well done Mercedes Benz - the car looks less feminine and I reckon it will look even better in the flesh...especially with the AMG bodykit. What I would say is: where is BMW's response to this? The CLS has been out since 2005 and BMW are still messing about trying to decide how to make uglier models (5 series GT)....and when will they respond to Audi's superb R8? 2016?!
Aug 23rd, 2010 2:23pm
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One thing I remember, is hating the first CLS when it first launched. The pictures didn't do it justice but after I saw it in the flesh I was mesmerized. I have a feeling history is about to repeat itself. I now like this design more than the old one!
Aug 23rd, 2010 2:12pm
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nendor nendor
Haha true i always read negative comments and then you see the car everywhere you go. I have read the same exact comments on the E class and i see it everywhere
Aug 23rd, 2010 2:09pm
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jerry05cod4 jerry05cod4
All the haters in this forum are sounding like the typical narrow minded person who is afraid of change and just criticizes anything other than the "secure" sense of what is their norm for, in this case, what the CLS should look like. This one is better looking than the outgoing one, even the interior is better...i would replace those leds for fog lights, other than that its superb. You'll bite your tongue soon enough ppl.
Aug 23rd, 2010 12:30pm
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Everyone's entitled to our his/her own opinions. Just because you like this car doesn't mean everyone else should.
Aug 23rd, 2010 6:13pm
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997-GT500-STI 997-GT500-STI
"The old one looks better" is an excuse for those who will end up buying the old shape off a used car lot, cuz they cannot afford the new one...
Aug 23rd, 2010 12:30pm
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kimbo kimbo
to all haters: you will be amazed how this car looks in real life, it will looks absolutely stunning.
Aug 23rd, 2010 12:24pm
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Han Solo Han Solo
I think its OK...but needs improvement The Headlights are a stunner... Taillights are screwed....But I think the interior is kind of too dull...needs more elegance.... The Rear End is quite dull also...need to see it in the flesh... The Concept Sketch looks way better.... It would need some improvement to go against the upcoming BMW Gran Coupe
Aug 23rd, 2010 12:07pm
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