Mercedes-AMG CLS53

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THE local arm of Mercedes-AMG has priced the updated performance version of its swoopy E-Class cousin, the CLS53 4Matic+, from $183,600 plus on-road costs, while those after something a bit more exclusive will be able to opt for the $197,600 ‘Limited Edition’.

Having already arrived in local showrooms, the new CLS53 has been treated to a mild facelift and a few specification tweaks for the 2022 model year with a new more aggressive front apron and a gloss black splitter.

The new front end is complemented by the standard AMG Night Package that blacks out the usually chrome window trim and body-coloured wing mirror housings.

At the rear is a new-look rear diffuser insert and subtle boot-lip spoiler, the whole package rolling on multi-spoke 20-inch AMG alloy wheels.

Inside the cabin is the latest version of Mercedes’ MBUX infotainment system and AMG’s multi-function steering wheel wrapped in Nappa leather and featuring bigger touch controls.

Other standard equipment highlights include a 13-speaker Burmester surround sound system, head-up display, powered and heated front seats with memory function, DAB+ digital radio, Nappa leather upholstery, 64-colour ambient interior lighting, wireless phone charging, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto and open-pore black ash wood trim.

Headline safety features consist of nine airbags, a 360-degree camera with dynamic guidelines, active lane-change assist, active parking assist with Parktronic, active traffic assist and the pre-safe impulse side accident preparation system.

As for the powertrain, no changes have been made under the bonnet meaning the turbocharged 3.0-litre straight-six still develops a healthy 320kW/520Nm, further boosted by the 48-volt integrated starter-generator which can contribute up to 16kW and 250Nm.

Zero-100km/h is dispatched in a claimed 4.5 seconds owing to the standard inclusion of all-wheel-drive while a nine-speed automatic transmission is responsible for keeping the engine on the boil.

The usual inclusion of AMG Dynamic Select (drive modes) combines with the standard adaptive air suspension to ensure the swoopy four-door is both as aggressive as an AMG should be and as comfortable as a Mercedes is expected to be.

Customers chasing a bit more exclusivity – and with an extra $14,000 burning a hole in their pocket – without up-shopping to the V8-powered GT63 – can now opt for the ‘CLS53 4Matic+ Limited Edition | One of 299’ (Limited Edition for short), of which just 20 will be coming to Australia.

As alluded to by the nameplate, just 299 of these Limited Editions are being built globally with the extra outlay netting buyers a heap of extra gear including the AMG dynamic plus package with ‘Race’ drive program and ‘Drift’ mode.

Inside is a Nappa leather and microfibre AMG Performance steering wheel, power-closing doors, two-tone AMG Nappa leather upholstery, carbon-fibre interior trim, red seatbelts and surround lighting with AMG brand logo projection – an AMG indoor car cover is also included.

From the outside, AMG fans will be able to spot the Limited Edition by its red brake callipers, extended AMG Night Package, darkened radiator grille, unique matte black 20-inch alloys, high-gloss black exterior badging and Cashmere White Magno or Selenite Grey Magno paintwork (the only two colours available).

While the standard CLS53 is available now, Limited Edition buyers will have to wait until January to take possession of their new car.

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