Spy shots: First prototypes for next-gen Mercedes Benz CLS

The Mercedes Benz CLS ignited the four-door coupe market when it was introduced back in 2004, and since then we've seen several other luxury rivals attempt to emulate the design with cars like the Porsche Panamera, Audi A7 and Aston Martin Rapide all under development.

Now the first prototype for Mercedes' next-generation CLS has been spotted, revealing a few subtle clues about the new model (previously we saw a test-mule disguised under the sheet metal of the current model). The new car is expected to be launched in late 2010 as a 2011 model, and positioned more upmarket to bring it in line with some of its more premium rivals. This will also allow Mercedes to introduce a second four-door coupe model, rumored to be based on its next-generation small car platform.

2011 Mercedes CLS spy shots

The car will feature a wider track, as indicated by the extended wheel arches seen on the previous test mule, and according to insiders its platform will be borrowed from the current S-Class sedan flagship.

New to the CLS will be a hybrid option based on the same powertrain as the one used in the recently revealed S400 BlueHybrid. Other engine options will include both V6 and V8 powerplants, and there will invariably be a high-performance AMG model.

Meanwhile, the styling of the car is expected to be similar to the current model although it will be bigger overall and feature some sharper lines, especially around the front end. Mercedes may even launch a 'Shooting Brake' variant as well. A Shooting Brake is essentially a two-door wagon, and Mercedes designers hinted at the possibility of a modern version with the unveiling of the ConceptFASCINATION study at the Paris Motor Show. While the ConceptFASCINATION was based around the design of the new E-Class Coupe, which is expected to spawn a Shooting Brake model of its own, our inside source suggests that a new CLS version will be offered as well.


2011 Mercedes CLS spy shots2011 Mercedes CLS spy shots2011 Mercedes CLS spy shots



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