Been driving the Mercedes Benz CLS 53-AMG this week, and the first thing you notice is the admiring glances you receive on the road, it is a long coupe, low slung, and all black with other detail to make it pop. Lots of low front and side skirts, look great, but with the Jozi pavements, sometimes they get scuffed. The CLS 53 is a 5-door coupe, and there is adequate room for four people and a child in the car.
The front end looks mean with the hexagonal grille with the distinctive big Merc badge dead centre. It has air intakes low on each side that give the car width. The a and c-pillar meet in a arc and it gives a low slung look that is nice. Four exhausts at the rear show that the 53 means business.
The interior has a premium look, which you would expect from an AMG, dash with its distictive air vents gives a jet cockpit look. Big media Widescreen Cockpit has a large display with virtual gauges to serve as the instrument cluster in the driver’s direct line of vision, as well as a central display above the centre console. The fully digital cockpit allows the driver to choose the look from the three different display styles and also configure the information and relevant views at will.
The 53 comes with a variety of modes, from Eco to Comfort, Sport, Sport plus and Individual. The Sport plus gives the best vrrrr pah sound, but you cannot drive like that all the time, so Comfort mode, for me gave good performance and a decent sound. Paddles on the steering wheel for keeping in maximum revs, and also most controls can be accessed from the wheel.
The AMG is about performance after all, and the 3.0L V6 engine delivers that in spades. 320kw and 520 Nm of torque course through it’s veins. Its EQ Boost starter generator temporarily delivers an additional output of 16 kW as well as 250 Nm of torque. It also powers the 48-volt on-board electrical system. The CLS 53 4MATIC+ accelerates to 100 km/h in 4.5 seconds and with the Driver’s Package reaches a top speed of 270 km/h. The E 53 4MATIC+ Coupe and Cabriolet accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in just 4.4 and 4.5 seconds respectively, and with the Driver’s Package reaches a top speed of 270 km/h.
The new 3.0-litre in-line engine is coupled with the AMG SPEEDSHIFT TCT 9G transmission, which impresses with extremely short shift times, fast response to shift paddle commands, double-declutching function and multiple downshifts. Whether automatic or initiated by the driver using the steering wheel shift paddles, upshifts or downshifts are implemented instantly. Especially in the “Sport+” and in manual driving modes, the transmission is very responsive.
Exclusive Edition 1 for the CLS 53 4MATIC+
The exclusive Edition 1 is available for the CLS 53 4MATIC+ boasts the COPPER ART interior design. Numerous highlights in a fine copper colour help to ensure a particularly high-quality interior atmosphere. The leather upholstery in black Nappa also features copper-coloured contrasting topstitching, as do the instrument panel, armrests, centre console, door panels and piping on the floor mats.
Trim elements and the centre console in carbon fibre with COPPER ART copper stitching and the Performance steering wheel with Edition badge equally underscore the vehicle’s exceptional position. The luxurious character is furthermore reinforced by the ambient lighting with 64 colours, the Memory and Mirror package and the exclusive IWC analogue clock.
The CLS 53 AMG costs R1490 600.00 and comes with a 5 year warranty and service plan. It’s a thrilling car to drive, not so easy to fit in parking spaces, as it very long in length, but looks like a performance car, and delivers on that mantra. The drive is superb, very smooth, with powerful acceleration and the car gets to 270 km/h rapidly.