The Vision CLS | Part Three

Vision CLS


This freedom of expression is evident in every aspect of the latest Mercedes concept. Based on familiar brand features, the car's design lines succeed in creating the perfect blend between seemingly contradictory characteristics such as dynamism and size, power and elegance, aesthetics and practicality. In this respect the inspiring design lines reflect the emotive and exciting character of the concept coupé.

At the heart of this dramatic and dynamic demeanour is a quite unique body style: impressive overhangs at the front and rear elongate the body in elegant fashion and provide an ideal contrast with the smooth and sweeping silhouette of the thoroughbred coupé roof. Similarly, the wide, unruffled surfaces of the doors and rear wings provide the perfect formal foil to the frameless side windows – another classic coupé feature – and to the low-slung appearance.

The front end: a new Mercedes face that positively exudes power and passion

The front design of the Vision CLS displays a new yet familiar look: new because the headlamps create a unique and intriguing Mercedes face; familiar because the classic Mercedes radiator grille with its distinctive vanes and the centrally positioned star remain prominent features. It is aspects such as these, in combination with the pronounced wedge shape of the bonnet and bumper, that emphasise the undoubted sporting prowess of the four-door coupé. This feeling of forwards thrust, power and performance potential is further enhanced by the muscular contours of the wings, whilst the extended vanes of the radiator grille give the front section a wide and therefore powerful appearance.

Side view: harmonious lines and surfaces

One of the trademarks of modern Mercedes design is the interplay between taut lines and smooth, naturally rounded forms. The Vision CLS coupé takes this design theme to a new level. A prominent waistline accentuates the height of the body edge at window level and gives an overriding feeling of safety. It takes its cue from the dynamic, rounded form of the front wheel arch, stretching along the entire length of the body before merging effortlessly into the elegant rear light cluster. The taillamps continue along the same lines, creating a seamless visual link with the rear bumper. This feature allows the designers to achieve the perfect balance between lines and surfaces. It also helps to create an impressively long appearance, thus further enhancing the sporty elegance of the body.

The roof line is an even more prominent feature of the four-door coupé, forming a subtle yet taut arch spanning the powerful body. It flows gracefully into an elegant C-pillar configuration which draws the line smoothly downwards into the rear section, thus creating a graceful silhouette.

At the rear end, the deepness of the bumper emphasises the width of the body and, in combination with the two chromed tailpipes, reinforces the powerful aura of the concept coupé.

With its highly sophisticated design lines, the Vision CLS brings a new and scintillating dimension to the world of motoring and a whole new meaning to the term "sheer driving pleasure".

continues... | Part Four
Published 20 September 2003 Melanie Carter

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