Geneva 2004 – Mercedes-Benz CLS500

The CLS four-door coupe first appeared at last September’s Frankfurt auto show as a concept, and at Geneva we were shown the production version. The CLS is a daring step for Mercedes. It is elegant and beautiful, even sensuous, and a complete departure from the company’s other four-door cars. Based completely on the E-class sedan, the CLS will fall between the top-spec E500 and the lowest-priced S-class, so expect a price of about $60,000. In the States, it will be offered only with the 302-hp, 5.0-liter V-8 as the CLS500, and goes on sale in about a year. Will it steal sales from Jaguar S-type and XJ, as Mercedes hopes, or simply cannabalize sales from Mercedes-Benz‘s many other premium model lines? Only time will tell.