Mercedes-Benz coined the notion of the four-door coupe almost a decade ago with the introduction of the CLS, and has taken things a step further with the ground-breaking CLS250 CDI Blue Efficiency. The CLS250 is the first four-cylinder luxury four-coupe Mercedes has ever produced and was spawned due to the increase in demand for luxury diesels. But why a four-cylinder? Well, the engine isn’t new – we’ve already experienced the 2.2-litre four-cylinder twin-turbo diesel engine in the ML and the results were very impressive. Pumping out 150kW and 500Nm the CLS is not short on power and that torque figure is astounding for such a small-capacity engine. Sure the Newton metre figure could have been spread a little more generously across the torque curve but it still provides enormous low-down pulling power from 1600-1800rpm.
The CLS250 isn’t the fastest car around, but it’s no slouch in terms of accelerating. In fact, it will surprise many would-be racers at a traffic light as it blasts from standstill to 100kph in just 7.5 seconds en route to a top speed of 242kph – not too shabby! But this particular CLS is focused more on efficiency and environmental friendliness than outright face-ripping performance. Yip, it’s a frugal and green machine. Emissions are pegged at a lowly 134g/km and if you drive it by following the Eco display prompts in the instrument cluster you’ll see around 5.1l/100km. During the launch drive through the Magaliesberg I managed 7.1l/100km but considering the undulating topography and my heavy foot I was generally impressed with its restrained drinking habits.
As with every Mercedes-Benz there are countless options available to personalise the driving experience but it’s the R28700 AMG Sports package that’s the most alluring. The AMG bumpers accentuate the graceful lines of the CLS while the flat-bottom steering wheel, black leather seats with contrasting stitching and aluminium pedals instill the cabin with a sporty persona. The package also adds a manual programme to the 7G-tronic auto box and AMG-tuned adaptive suspension.
At R700000 the CLS250 is arguably one of the best-value luxury propositions around trumping its closest rival, the BMW 640d Gran Coupe, by a staggering R212623.
The CLS comes standard with the MobiloDrive 120 maintenance package of 6-years/120 000 km with and a 2-year /unlimited vehicle warranty as a standard feature.