|Mercedes-Benz CL 600|
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The launch of the new CL-Class in autumn 2006 will be the culmination of a Mercedes-Benz coupé tradition going back over 50 years. The two-door model combines peerless exclusivity and charismatic design with the sort of cutting-edge technology that no other manufacturer can match worldwide. The luxury Coupé raises the bar in terms of vehicle safety with the PRE-SAFE brakes: the unique system automatically brakes the Coupé before an imminent rear-end collision. Furthermore, Mercedes innovations such as the Active Body Control (ABC) suspension system, the Intelligent Light System with five light-ing functions and PRE-SAFE anticipatory occupant protection all come as standard. Two powerful engines with 8 or 12 cylinders are available, delivering a notable increase in output and torque. Thanks to their exemplary smoothness they also live up to the Mercedes heritage of superb motoring refinement.
The large Mercedes Coupés have been synonymous with style and exclusivity in the automotive industry for decades. They set the standard in terms of design and equipment, combine exemplary safety with an outstanding level of comfort and assured handling. In short, Mercedes Coupés are extraordinary dream cars - automobile classics. The new CL-Class is another Mercedes-Benz masterpiece. Just as the luxury coupé points the way to the future with its innovative technology, the design has also set the mould for a new Mercedes style. Its hallmark is the interaction between distinctive tightly drawn lines with large, unruffled surfaces. This design idiom lends the Coupé its own particular expressive power, emphasising the calm and power of its powerful, self-confident nature. Familiar Mercedes features have been given a contemporary twist, resulting in a harmonious blend of the classic and contemporary. Examples include the hallmark Mercedes radiator grille with its wide chrome louvres and the design of the C-pillar. The unique, slightly downwards-tapering pillar configuration is a typical feature of the large Mercedes Coupés whose roots go right back to the 1950s: in 1956 the 220 S/SE Coupé (W 180/W 128 model series) first captured attention with this striking C-pillar design, and a few years later the concept was further refined in the suc-cessor model, the 220 SE Coupé (W 111/112). Other design features which were already acclaimed back then have also been reinterpreted for the CL-Class, keeping alive the large coupé tradition of the Mercedes-Benz brand: the fully retractable side windows, for instance, whose continuous aperture is not interrupted by a B-pillar, and the large, curving panoramic rear window. In the early days this was a typical styling feature of the Mercedes Coupés, and in its stylistically evolved form for the new CL-Class it is just as appealing as in the 220 SE Coupé of 1961.
Style finds its way into the interior too: the large side window aperture draws the eye to the stylish dashboard, exquisite wood trim and soft leather upholstery. In an instant you realise that everything in the interior of the new CL-Class is designed for comfort and relaxation. The atmosphere is reminiscent of an exclusive club: take a seat and enjoy. Five stylish colour combinations are available; automatic climate control, COMAND with car radio and CD/DVD player as well as a glass sunroof are all part of the standard specification, elements that come together to deliver a unique motoring and comfort experience. In the top-of-the-line CL 600 the Exclusive PAssION leather appointments, specially selected poplar wood and an Alcantara roof liner with quilted seams provide the finishing touches to an exquisite first-class ambience, a look and feel also echoed in the seats with their designo styling, the chromed door sill panels and floor mats with leather edging. The standard specification also includes dynamic multicontour seats with massage function and seat ventilation, the hard-disc navigation system COMAND APS, the LOGIC7 surround sound system with DVD changer and the KEYLEss-GO access and drive authorisation system. Compared with the outgoing model, the new Mercedes-Benz top-of-the-range coupé has grown slightly in every dimension. 5065 millimetres long, 1871 millimetres wide and 1418 millimetres high, the body is 75 millimetres longer, 14 millimetres wider and 20 millimetres higher than before, providing even more comfort and space on all four seats. The boot capacity has been increased by 40 litres to 490 litres (VDA measuring method).
A newly developed control system, which has already been successfully implemented in the S Class worldwide, refines driver-vehicle interaction even further. Above all, it provides convenient, rapid access to frequently used functions such as car radio, DVD player, car phone or navigation system. Depending on the driver's own preference, these systems can be controlled using switches in the centre console, pressing a button on the multifunction steering wheel or using the COMAND controller on the centre console. This central control unit is linked to the large, pivoting COMAND colour display next to the instrument cluster, providing access to the user-friendly main and sub-menus that activate the various functions. The standard-fit automatic climate control with four independently adjustable temperature zones is also integrated into the new control system. The driver and front passenger can select temperature, air distribution and other settings either using the COMAND controller and menu-based control, or by means of an attractively styled switch array beneath the air vents. The COMAND system allows other individual climate settings to be adjusted such as air distribution and the footwell temperature. The newly developed integral seats in the CL-Class provide maximum individual seating comfort. "Integral" means that all components of the seat-belt system are in-corporated directly into the seat; hence the seats form an important component in the occupant protection system. The standard specification already provides electric adjustment of the fore-aft setting, inclination of the seat and backrest, seat height, head restraint and length of the front seat cushions. Pneumatic lumbar supports allow the driver and front passenger to adjust the backrest contour to suit their build and consequently reduce the strain on the back muscles. Optional extras include luxury seats with active ventilation (standard in the CL 600) that provide even more individual comfort, along with the further enhanced multi-contour seats with nine air cushions, and dynamic multicontour seats with massage function (standard in the CL 600). The driver and front passenger seats with multicontour function have been awarded the AGR ("healthy back campaign") seal of approval.
The standard specification in the new Mercedes Coupé features technological innovations that no other manufacturer can match anywhere in the world. First and foremost is the Active Body Control (ABC) suspension system, which in its latest, even more sophisticated guise delivers unprecedented handling dynamics while offering an equally appreciable improvement in ride comfort. Based on sensor signals and using specially designed hydraulic cylinders at the axles, ABC all but entirely eliminates the customary pitch and roll of the body that occur when moving off, cornering and braking. ABC responds with split-second speed to ensure the body damping is adjusted instantly to any situation. At speeds above 60 km/h, ABC lowers the body by up to ten millimetres to reduce drag and improve handling stability.
The Intelligent Light System, which makes driving even safer in the dark, is equally unique. Together with bi-xenon headlamps it forms part of the standard specification for the new CL-Class and provides five different lighting functions that are activated to match driving and weather conditions: the new country road mode illuminates the driver's-side edge of the road more widely and brightly than the existing low-beam headlamps. Motorway mode, which comes on automatically when driving above 90 km/h, delivers a uniform cone of light that illuminates the entire road width. In the centre of this cone the driver is able to see around 50 metres further. The enhanced fog lamps are also new, which Mercedes-Benz uses to provide better orientation in adverse weather conditions. Active light function and cornering light function are also part of the standard-fit Intelligent Light System on the CL Class.
The new luxury Coupé is ready for any challenge on motorways and rural roads thanks to Mercedes' most powerful engines to date. The eight-cylinder powerplant in the CL 500 delivers 285 kW/388 hp and generates a maximum torque of 530 Newton metres from 2800 rpm. As such the newly developed engine outperforms the existing V8 unit by 26 percent in terms of output and 15 percent when it comes to torque. Equipped with four-valve technology, variably adjustable shifting camshafts, a two-stage intake module and tumble flaps in the intake ducts, the new V8 is among the most advanced, powerful engines in its displacement class. The CL 500 accelerates from zero to 100 km/h in just 5.4 seconds (previous model: 6.3 seconds). An ultra-modern biTurbo twelve-cylinder engine under the bonnet of the new CL 600 generates its impressive power. Mercedes engineers have enhanced numerous de-tails of the power unit and, compared to the predecessor model, have increased out-put by 12 kW/17 hp to 380 kW/517 hp. The maximum torque, already on tap from 1900 rpm, has been improved further by 30 Newton metres to 830 Newton metres and remains constant up to 3500 rpm. The new CL 600 accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in just 4.6 seconds (previous model: 4.8 seconds). And despite the significant per-formance boost the V12 engine consumes 0.4 litres less fuel than the previous CL 600 per 100 kilometres. Mercedes-Benz has combined the standard-fit automatic transmission with the new DIRECT SELECT gearshift: the driver can select the transmission settings "P", "N", "R" and "D" by nudging a lever on the steering column. Operating commands are transmitted electronically by wire.
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|Article||Image gallery (6)||Specifications|