Tuesday, 12 November 2013


 -By GB Bajaj,CEO & Strategist at GB Luxe Life for Stylefluid Trendz
The CLS, the racy version from the S class side is the second generation CLS and design style quotient is derived from the styling cues from the SLS. The sporty design encourages one to be in racing mode, its swooping lines, aggressive gaping air intakes to channel air flow to cool the brake rotors, prominent protruding Merc grille with the oversize three-pointed star on the grille, sloping bulging bonnet and its bulging arches, lower ground clearance, its sheer width certainly portrays aggressiveness and business appeal to it. The side profile of the CLS is beautifully sculpted, the wheel arches pretty flared and the fluid shape denotes art, expressive contours. The LED high-performance headlamps paired with LED daytime driving light strip in the bumper, accentuates the beauty and aura of the CLS 350.

The swoopy shape has achieved a Cd figure of just 0.26, slippery when fast. The aerodynamics has been enhanced and even with additional width, the wind resistance has been cut by 10 per cent- fabulous.
The exquisite interior, contemporary in design is a blend of fine leather, rich wood with a trim and chrome surface which is very inviting and extremely cozy because of its swoopy shape, as the windshield is much closer to the driver’s nose, thus giving a very intimate feel.
The interiors are of high quality, soothing colors, a cleverly integrated infotainment system, ergonomics at its best as for its layout and interior space provided, though I feel all round visibility does get hindered. The boot space with 520 liters of space can go for golfing or trip to the supermarket to stock for the fortnight.

It’s very important to have a great sound system, and in the CLS 350 is equipped with the Harman/Kardon Logic 7 surround sound system, standard, as the volume is pumped up, hearing some electronica music, exuberant, live concert experience. The Audio 20 CD radio audio system is equipped with a 14.7 cm display, a radio and CD player, MP3 compatible with a 6-disc CD changer. For the iPod freaks use the AUX-IN and for safe driving, do use the Bluetooth interface for hands-free function and for better connectivity which can be controlled conveniently using the multifunction steering wheel and the Controller on the centre console.

The driver’s cabin with its own unique brilliance is fitted with Merc’s COMAND APS (cockpit management and data system) along with a digital TV tuner.The cabin is sportier with leather on the top of the dashboard, black chrome controls, genuine wood and metal trim and the sporty three spoke napa leather sports steering. As a preferred option, do take the Dynamic Multi-contour seats with massage function for the driver’s seat. It is a very relaxed and stress free drive after work or a to a business deal.
The luxury equipment features include Mqbes connect USB devices, Speed Tronic with additional cruise interactive, camera rear view with lines of assistant to parking to the rear, Air Conditioning-cooling zones, night vision system, etc.
The Harman Kardon Logic 7 surround sound system with 14 high-performance speakers, including a woofer, and a 9-channel DSP amplifier, this 610-watt Dolby Digital 5.1 system delivers spectacular acoustics.
The passengers seated behind, do desire and want more of head room and leg room, as the rear wind screen is swooping to give the sexy racy aerodynamic shape and look. Well, it’s the swooping shape, you literally have to squeeze in and be happy with the luxurious interiors, plush seats and the dynamic sound system. The centre console running from the front to rear seats ensures it’s strictly four seater, one kid will do, with option of folding rear-seat backrests, 1/3: 2/3 (EASY-PACK quick fold). The roofline of the CLS stands just over 1.4 meters tall, pretty low slung.
For a suitable climate in the car, the THERMOTRONIC automatic climate control system allows the driver and passenger to adapt the climate in their respective seats to suit their individual requirements – independently of each other. The system keeps the temperature at the desired level automatically, even in strong sunlight. To this end, sensors register the temperature inside and outside the vehicle, controlling the heating, cooling and fan for each temperature zone individually, according to requirements. There are three climate styles: DIFFUSE, MEDIUM and FOCUS, to suit every taste.

I did forget to mention, the electric sliding glass sunroof, featuring automatic opening and closing, protects against bright sunlight, and includes an interior sliding roof lining. The integrated wind deflector ensures open-top driving at high speeds without excessive noise or draughts.
The soft cushy ride and superb road holding and handling while I performed a slalom just beginning of peak hours, gave me tremendous confidence for the CLS, reason for its Macpherson struts up front and multi links at the rear with standard Airmatic air suspension, and when you switch to sport mode, world of a difference, the engine more aggressive, the growl is louder, the handling more precise and stiffer, can actually test the car to its limit, in traffic and the sea link, wind dancer. The 17 inch alloy wheels providing a sportier firmer handling, just the perfect ride quality, always happier with 19 inches for more confident drive at high speeds and grip, whether  in wet or dry conditions, superb. The steering responsive is beautifully perfect and precise, 255/45 series up front and back.
As for the Bombay potholes and bumpy roads, the ride comfort is very impressive and the CLS just glides over it, smoothly and cushy drive, absorbing all the bumps very well with its Airmatic suspension - business class.
The CLS has the DIRECT CONTROL suspension (standard for 6-cylinder models) and the working of the suspension with selective damping system combines agility with ride comfort. The vibration dampers adapt automatically in line with the current driving situation, thus enhancing both damping and the car’s stability – even on poor road surfaces. The DIRECT CONTROL suspension can also be optionally configured for out-and-out sports performance.
The AIRMATIC air suspension with adaptive vibration dampers adapts itself in line with the current road and driving conditions, thus reducing road roar and tyre vibration levels as well as enhancing active safety when compared with conventional steel suspension. The driver can select either comfort oriented or sporty settings manually. At high speed, the car is lowered automatically in order to improve driving stability, aerodynamics and fuel consumption.

The suspension has two modes, Comfort mode and Sports mode, for a soft carpet drive and for normal traffic, do use comfort mode and for a dash to a meet or to pick up your family from the airport, suggest the sports mode, ride quality and road holding improves considerably, firmer and stiffer, chassis is agile and steering response is precise.

The Direct-Steer system (standard) power steering imparts a rock steady feel at high speeds and reduces the steering effort required while negotiating a serpentine road and lightens up for tight parallel parking. The steering system has delivered perfect response as the ratio increases as you add steering input at high speeds, impeccable road handling and road holding, as the emphasis is on straight-line stability, leading to improved vehicle agility and steering comfort.
Well, I did forget to mention the spicy part, the CLS is a rear-wheel-drive, so my slalom made it more entertaining while dodging traffic and C bends and S bends while negotiating traffic, as the response is predictable, only wish it had 19 inches.
To what I thank this performance too, the new 3.5-litre direct injection petrol V6 developing Rated Output (kW/hp @ rpm) 225 @ 6500 and Rated Torque (Nm @ rpm) 370 @ 3500 - 5250, petrol variant only available. So what do we get as the outcome, more power, better efficiency, superb responsiveness and lovely acoustics of the V6 growl, just ride the torque curve, astonishing performance and cool task.
The torque is instantaneous and with its 7G-Tronic Plus automatic and the direct select lever on the steering column, smooth slips which optimizes the shift pattern for economy and while in ‘S’ for Sport certainly boosts its ego and its torque and very eager to do few laps at the circuit as it down changes to be prepared.  Well, feel like racing for the board meeting, do use the paddle shifts on the steering wheel.

To further help to reduce fuel consumption, it is included with the standard-fit ECO start/stop function and a new intake and exhaust system.

The 7G-Tronic  plus is so smooth, encourages you for longer drives and enables 0-100kmph in 6.1 seconds with a top speed of 250kmph with imperceptible shifts when driven casually too.
Being a luxury car, the Fuel consumption on the highway is 9 - 11km/liter and in traffic the fuel consumption is 5. - 6km/liter.
The CLS 350 BlueEFFICIENCY engine emphasis is on efficiency, with over 20% lower fuel consumption than the predecessor model and correspondingly lower CO 2 emissions with enhanced dynamics due to the latest- generation direct petrol injection from Mercedes-Benz, which operates using spray- guided combustion and high pressure injection by means of piezo injectors.
The weight of the car at 1735kgs is achieved due to the extensive use of aluminum on doors, bonnet, front wings and many of the suspension components, a lot lighter than the original first CLS.

Mercedes Benz’s focus on the safety of the driver & passengers is priority and equipped with the most important suite of safety features, 9 airbags, high tech warning systems including alert system for the presence of objects in the blind spot of the side mirrors, Merc’s Attention Assist driver fatigue detection system and Lane Keeping Assist – both of which keeps the driver alert and avoids accidents even In critical driving situations.

The active safety features are ESP, an Electronic Stability Program to avoid the vehicle to skid with emergency application of brake and BAS is the Brake Assist ensuring maximum Brake force application to stop the vehicle, when panic braking. The Acceleration Skid Control (ASR), to avoid skidding of the vehicle while driving at high speed and on slippery roads. For safe parking of the vehicle, the Active Parking system is integrated with the PARKTRONIC system, combined with the audio and visual warnings along with the ultrasonic sensors, enables the driver with ease in handling the vehicle for comprehensive parking.

When a sudden swerve is attempted, the PRE-SAFE system (standard is activated, in split seconds, activation of reversible tensioning of the driver and passenger seat belts as well as automatic closing of the open windows and/or the optional sliding sunroof – depending on the driving situation and the vehicle equipment for protective measures to secure the driver and passengers to ensure zero impact or minimum impact.

Another critical feature on rear impact, the NECK-PRO head restraints (standard) for the driver and front passenger can gets activated in a rear impact, depending on the severity of the collision: a spring mechanism moves the head restraints forwards and upwards, meaning that the head can be supported earlier and the strain on the cervical spine can be reduced.
Metallic and Non-Metallic colors available with all variants of Mercedes Benz CLS Class are Metallic Green Black, Albaster White, Metallic Obsidian Black, Metallic Carneol Red, Metallic Cubanite Silver, Metallic Travertine Beige, Metallic Tanzanite Blue, Metallic Iridium Silver and Metallic Perlite Grey.

The CLS 350 is surely athletic, powerful statement and luxurious in all aspects, definitely has made MERCEDES BENZ proud and its owners.

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