The car: Mercedes-Benz CLS 250 CDI Shooting Brake
The price: From $129,000 plus on-road costs
Vital statistics: 2.1-litre turbo diesel four-cylinder; 150kW/5000Nm; 7-sp automatic; RWD; 5.5L/100km, 144g/km CO2
Why we’re driving it
The CLS Shooting Brake has just been added to the Mercedes-Benz line-up, and we’ve secured the least expensive version, the 250 CDI, for a couple of months as a long-term loan car.
Looks stunning. Comes with plenty of equipment including 19-inch AMG alloys and a full bodykit which add to the visual pizzazz. Standard reversing camera and front and rear sensors, standard sunroof, smart key system with push-button start, leather and wood trim, and seats with electric adjustment and memory function for driver and passenger. Flat-bottomed steering wheel is a funky touch to an otherwise elegant cabin. Good steering feel and response. Rear seat space quite good. Boot is a decent size (590 litres – 85 litres more than the CLS sedan) and has quick release triggers to fold the back seats flat.
Diesel is quite loud under acceleration and also exhibits some turbo lag from a standstill. Silly column-shift gear selector and clumsy foot- and hand-operated park brake. Gearbox can get it wrong every now and then in stop-start situations, and the stop-start system is quite jolting at restart. Eco-mode dulls reactions too much, and Sport makes it too lively and rev-happy – there’s no happy medium. Suspension can be busy over uneven sections of road. Luckily it has the aforementioned camera and sensors because outward vision is not great. Merc’s menu system for the entertainment and satnav is fiddlier than those in BMWs or Audis.
Would I buy one?
I’d have to consider whether having something that looks cool outweighs having a mildly more practical yet considerably more dowdy station wagon. It probably does.
The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.