The Mercedes-Benz CL is a line of grand tourers manufactured and marketed by the German automaker Mercedes-Benz from 1992 to 2013 in Europe and 2014 in the United States. CL is an abbreviation for the German Coupé Leicht or Coupé Luxusklasse, both of which mean "light coupé" or "luxury coupé." Mercedes promoted it as its flagship vehicle.
History of the Mercedes-Benz CL
First Generation Mercedes-Benz CL (C140; 1992–1999)
From 1992 to 1999, the CL-Class was available on the W140 chassis, a stylish but hard-lined revamp of the previous generation. It was sometimes internally referred to as the C140. Bruno Sacco, the vehicle's designer, received final approval for the C140's look sometime in late 1987 or early 1988. Mercedes made a few exterior changes to the coupé during this time, but they modified the class designation multiple times. In 1992 and 1993, the 500 SEC and 600 SEC were the names given to the V8 and V12 coupés, respectively. Mercedes-Benz introduced the world to the coupé category with the 600 SEC, their first V12-powered model. The S500 Coupé and S600 Coupé became the new titles for both models in 1994. Since its introduction in June 1996, the CL-Class moniker has been used for both the CL500 and CL600 coupes based on the W140 platform. In August 1998, the manufacturer halted production. The "V12" emblems at the bottom of each C pillar, just behind the passenger windows, are a telltale sign that the vehicle has a twelve-cylinder engine. The CL420 was the base model and featured a 4.2L V8 engine; nevertheless, it was not sold widely and did not fare as well as the larger-engined siblings.
In total, 26,022 Coupés were made before production stopped in September 1998.
Second Generation Mercedes-Benz CL (C215; 1998–2006)
The CL W215-chassis coupé was produced from 1999 to 2006. It was inspired by the Mercedes-Benz S-Class (W220). The Mercedes-Benz engineers loaded it with crazy extras as if inventing the coupe class wasn't enough. The CL is an excellent example of this, particularly the 600 version that uses the S-Klasse as its base platform. This model's V12 keeps you firmly planted in your seat at full throttle and packs a painful punch to your vital organs, all while being smaller and thinner than its competitors.
Third Generation Mercedes-Benz CL (C216; 2006–2014)
The 2006 Mercedes-Benz CL was another high-quality entry in the German automaker's illustrious line of Gran Tourers. The only available powertrain was a gas-powered one. The Active Body Control system, which adjusted the vehicle's stiffness for passenger comfort or, in "sport" mode, improved cornering velocity, was included. The CL was available with four V8 engines, two V12 engines, and two AMG variants. Every single car had an automatic transmission. The updated Mercedes CL-Class debuted to the public for the first time at the Goodwood Festival of Speed in July 2010. The new CL-Class has an updated appearance and cabin, but its most significant upgrades are mechanical.
In 2014, Mercedes-Benz retailed the 2014 Mercedes-Benz CL with a starting MSRP of $116,600 for the base Coupe CL 550 4MATIC, rising to $215,500 for the Coupe CL 65 AMG variant.
- Coupe CL 550 4MATIC - $116,600 ($146,780 in 2022)
- Coupe CL 63 AMG - $154,600 ($194,616 in 2022)
- Coupe CL 600 RWD - $162,000 ($203,931 in 2022)
- Coupe CL 65 AMG - $215,500 ($271,279 in 2022)
A sloping greenhouse, a large hood, and no B-pillars were a few of the hallmarks of the Mercedes-Benz CL. It preserved that from its predecessor and increased it in every manner. With a superior aerodynamic that resulted in lesser wind noise and a greater look, it was at the peak of its category. It evoked beauty and driving dynamics with a side sculptured line throughout the body and back flared arches. After the facelift, the exterior gets bi-xenon headlights with LED technology, a new grille, redesigned fenders and hood, LED fog lights, and new exhaust pipes.
The interior retained the same level of luxury as the S-Class. The front seats are big and comfy. The CL's automatic gearshift was located in the steering column, which improved comfort and helped clear out the center console between the front seats. A panoramic glass roof was included as standard equipment to enhance the interior atmosphere and overall driving experience. Regarding its facelift, the manufacturer added a new wood trim with new inside technologies, including Active Lane Keeping Assist, Attention Assist, Active Body Control, and Night View Assist Plus.
Specs and Performance of the Mercedes-Benz CL
- 4.7L V8 twin-turbo
- 5.5L V8
- 5.5L V8 twin-turbo
- 6.2L V8
- 5.5L V12 twin-turbo
- 6.0L V12 twin-turbo
The Mercedes-Benz CL's 5.5L V12 twin-turbo engine delivers 510 hp (380 kW) at 5,000 rpm and 612 lb-ft (830 Nm) of torque at 1,800–3,500 rpm. Mercedes-Benz marketed the CL as a rear-wheel-drive (RWD) vehicle, and it was available with a 5-speed automatic Daimler-Benz 5G-Tronic transmission. The Mercedes-Benz CL accelerates from 0 to 60 mph (0 to 97 kph) in 4.4 seconds, with a top speed of 202 mph (325 kph). Dimension-wise, the Mercedes-Benz CL measures 5,065 mm (199.4 in) long, 1,872 mm (73.7 in) wide, and 1,417 mm (55.8 in) high. Its wheelbase measures 2,955 mm (116.3 in) and has a curb weight of 4,652 lbs (2,110 kg).
The Mercedes-Benz CL was released between 1992 and 2013 in Europe and from 1992 to 2014 in the United States. It was discontinued in 2014 to make way for the new Mercedes-Benz C217.