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Mercedes-Benz CL 500 BlueEfficiency

Click to view picture gallery“A new engine range moves the
  next generation Mercedes CL coupe
  higher up the desirability stakes.
  Not only is the new powerplant
  quieter and much smoother but
it delivers its power more readily,
  economically and cleanly — a win-
  win formula

AS POWERING THE NEW CL COUPES, the new generation of V8 petrol and V6 diesels build on Mercedes' established BlueEfficiency principles with sophisticated high-performance ignition linked to careful re-design and manufacturing to reduce friction. By including a Stop & Start function and the latest 7G-Tronic automatic transmission, the result is significantly improved power outputs and reduced fuel consumption and emissions.

In the case of the CL 500 BlueEfficiency 4.6 V8, the 435bhp petrol models show gains of 12 per cent more power while torque is up almost a third and consumption down 22 per cent — remarkable achievements in cars of this size.

The CL 63 AMG's new V8 engine has been completely retuned above the standard unit to punch out 544bhp with sharper responses calibrated into its electronics and 7-speed transmission, and this bi-turbo unit now outperforms the naturally-aspirated 6.2-litre of the former 63 AMG coupe. As such, it offers a delightful blend of performance with panache, delivering immense urge immediately whenever called upon and without challenging the driver to push their personal limits.

The new engine and
new cabin technology
make it more
of a driver’s car as well
as being a genuine
four-seater coupe
The new CL has a dramatically different front-end incorporating a new grille, headlamps, bumper, bonnet and LED daytime lights. At the back are new tail lights; the rear deck now rolls over the wings in a more continuous line and the coupe roofline is different.

Inside there is the latest split-view technology — using thin film transistors — which allows driver and passenger to simultaneously view different displays, as well as powerful navigation and sound packages.

Mercedes has introduced additional technical features including active lane assist, blind spot monitors, radar and camera assistance systems and even cross-wind stabilisation, which uses sensors on the suspension to measure cross-wind hitting the car from any direction and then beefing up the resistance, all in milliseconds.

The new engine and new cabin technology make it more of a driver's car as well as being a genuine four-seater coupe. Access to the two rear seats is easy, and once inside the leg and headroom is very good.

The best selling year for the CL Class in the UK was 2007 when 729 went through dealerships but the arrival of the recession halved that figure the following year and it slipped further again last year — to date, in 2010, it has topped just 100 units.

The arrival of the new CL this October is expected to see sales start climbing again and customers will buy this new CL for its improved looks, very quiet and roomy interior and refined powertrain which offers excellent performance and economy potential. However, it is expensive to buy, tax and insure; other downsides include the complex multi-media system that can be distracting to use and some steering vagueness. — David Miles

Mercedes-Benz CL 500 BlueEfficiency
| 89,425
Maximum speed: 155mph | 0-62mph: 4.9 seconds | Overall test MPG: 29.7mpg
Power: 435bhp | Torque: 516lb ft | CO2: 224g/km