2006 MercedesBenz CLS55 AMG Businessweek

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Mercedes-Benz CLS 55 AMG

2006 Mercedes-Benz CLS55 AMG

22, 2005

MOMA mia! puts the E-Class on a tall, pedestal.

For once, I am flummoxed. I fathom whether my experience of new CLS55 AMG has been an automotive one or an one. Is it a car, or is it art? For than a century, artists and snobs and dilettantes have struggling to devise a satisfactory for modern art. It’s a notoriously difficult to pin down. there’s yet another moving — literally — to one’s comprehension.

Yeah, a car as fine art. What of brain-dead motorhead would up with an idea like

If the reader could please disbelief for a moment, perhaps I can up the proposition. For one thing, the CLS55 to disturb the status quo, as art has been wont to do since before the Cubists. To a world equates a coupe with two and a sedan with four, CLS-Class represents a four-door design that is simultaneously and vaguely unsettling. As a coupe, it is more attenuated than as a sedan, it is sleeker, more One is forced to look the car over, to it, to stretch one’s conception of the in order to make room for an new interpretation. Just as modern art has forcing one to do since well the Cubists.

For another thing, the CL55 AMG the distinction between what is and what is dynamic. The ‘figure’ is so interrupted, or broken in plane and that it disappears, as it were, the blur of its movement; only the remains. Instead of describing Boccioni’s famous 1913 Unique Forms of Continuity in the fine arts textbook Art Through the Ages might be painting the word portrait of new 2006 Mercedes-Benz.

You are not yet convinced. I can that, even if this $92,000 price tag is fully compatible. Keep in mind, that the foregoing description an artifact (i.e. Boccioni’s that is entirely at rest. stunning CLS may also convey an of speed while standing but it enjoys the added dimension of speed — abundant, daunting speed — in its own As Aldous Huxley would it in his tantalizing essay Wanted, a New speed, it seems to me, is the one genuinely pleasure. Perhaps speed, as by this Mercedes, is also a modern art.

Meanwhile, back off campus.

all, underhood the CLS55 a supercharged 5.4-liter V8 capable of 469 horsepower and 516 foot-pounds in the blink of an The car blurs from zero to 60 in a 4.5 seconds. The car is theoretically capable of than 155 mph. And yet, at lofty, unfamiliar speed, the exudes an essence of calm. It is as as quiet, as placid as an unfurled on a windless day.

As befits a masterpiece, everything so simple at face value in fact complexity lies the act of creation. In the case of the CLS55, proprietary team of super-tuners at AMG is not only for boosting engine over the standard CLS500 supercharging and increased displacement) but for re-calibrating the five-speed SpeedShift transmission and dialing-in the suspension.

The DC suspension, in fact, uses air springs and adaptive dampeners to road conditions and to adapt travel and roll control Giant 19-inch wheels, 8.5 inches wide up front and 9.5 at the rear, plant the car to the road ESP stability control shepherds wheel slip invisibly into line. As a result of all mechanical ministrations, an otherwise two-ton sedan behaves a spry touring coupe of the heft.

Four discreet buckets enfold driver and in swaths of Nappa leather. different climate control fine-tune heating and cooling to preferences. Optional front incorporate not only heating but cooling and massaging functions, optional digital surround fills the cockpit with from CD as well as broadcast and satellite sources.

Individual Smart Keys encoded seating, climate, and preference for different drivers; and yet the tap of a button atop the gear is all that’s required to start the Rain-sensing wipers react to weather conditions. An optional Curve lighting system the high-intensity bi-Xenon headlamps gentle arcs when the wheel is turned. Moreover, 25 mph, the fog lamps illuminate if the headlights are on, then aim to either or left when a turn is indicated or the steering wheel is

For all of its patent ingenuity, the CLS55 any demands upon utility. If it can be to be as thought provoking as a work of it is every bit as useful as one, Four cozy seats family shuttle service. leather, wood, and brushed interior finishes forestall the of hauling injurious cargo. A trunk does consume 16 cubic feet of cargo, on the hand. And mysterious, tiny in the roof do conceal threaded for affixing an optional cargo

But the thought of a rack atop rolling sculpture is as absurd as a smock draped over de Milo. The fittings, perhaps, are but a joke being played by designers as a concession to the Rule of It takes a birthmark or a small, beauty spot to bring an perfect sculpture to life. Or to a complex automobile into a of modern art.

GET Kelley Book Pricing for this

2006 Mercedes-Benz CLS55

Mercedes-Benz CLS 55 AMG

price: $86,600; as tested,

Engine: 5.4-liter supercharged 469 hp/516 lb-ft

Transmission: automatic, rear-wheel drive

Length x width x height: x 73.7 x 54.4 in

Wheelbase: in

Curb weight: 3750 lb

Fuel economy (EPA 14/20 mpg

Safety equipment: front airbags, front-seat airbags, side curtain anti-lock brakes, traction stability control

Major equipment: Air suspension, automatic control, 19-inch alloy AM/FM/CD/Sirius player, DVD navigation power locks/windows/mirrors, leather anti-theft system

Warranty: years/50,000 miles

Mercedes-Benz CLS 55 AMG
Mercedes-Benz CLS 55 AMG
Mercedes-Benz CLS 55 AMG
Mercedes-Benz CLS 55 AMG
Mercedes-Benz CLS 55 AMG
Mercedes-Benz CLS 55 AMG


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