2019 Mercedes-Benz CLS450 test drive: Benz gets back inline with straight-six


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The 2019 Mercedes-Benz CLS 450 is an all-new automobile, but it surely marks the return to the model of an outdated sort of engine: The inline-6.

As soon as a mainstay of the luxurious automobile phase, because of its smooth-running operation of their well-balanced cylinder firing order, you’ve got solely been out there to get one in BMWs and large diesel vans in recent times.

Mercedes hasn’t provided an inline-6 since 1999, having transitioned to V6s for a wide range of manufacturing and packaging causes, however has as soon as once more succumbed to the format’s attract.

It’s not like its V6s are tough riders, however one other one of many straight-6 benefits is the truth that they want half as a lot of some elements, like camshafts and turbochargers.

The blower strapped onto the three.Zero-liter within the CLS450 is an enormous one, which implies it’s comparatively gradual to spool up. That sometimes results in the dreaded turbo lag throughout acceleration, however this powerplant provides a excessive tech twist…actually.

The 362 hp, 369 lb-ft engine can also be fitted with an electrical motor that not solely acts as a starter/alternator to allow fuel-saving cease/begin functionality, but in addition supplies a lift of 21 hp and 148 lb-ft that’s out there as quickly as you step on the accelerator. This fills within the hole whereas the turbo will get to work and, fed by the 9-speed transmission and all-wheel-drive system within the instance I examined, it didn’t go away me wanting for the V8 from final 12 months’s CLS 550 that it successfully replaces one bit.

Straight-sixes will likely be discovering their means below the hoods of many Mercedes within the coming years (at the least till electrical motors take over), however the CLS450 was the right place to start out. The third-generation of the unique “four-door coupe” replaces the cumbersome exterior design of the final model with smooth strains that make the physique appear to be it’s pulled as tightly as a drumhead and are greater than value buying and selling for the tight rear headroom, at the least in comparison with the E-Class sedan that the CLS is expounded to.

The CLS450 will get the entire good things from the E-Class, too. This consists of its opulent, LED-enhanced inside, dreamy air-suspension, twin foot-wide digital shows and wonderful semi-autonomous driver aids, which may self-steer the automobile in a lane for brief durations and even change lanes with a flick of the flip sign stalk, if the automobile sees that the coast is obvious.

Pricing for the CLS450 hasn’t been introduced, however the CLS550 began at $76,145.

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