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2024 Mercedes CLE Coupe revealed: Sporty new model blends elements of C-Class and E-Class to take on BMW 4 Series and Audi A5

A car without a niche? Mercedes launches new genre-bending coupe to sit between its most storied nameplates.

Mercedes-Benz has returned once again to its CL prefix - which includes the CLA and once also included the CLS four-door coupe, this time with the CLE which is positioned to sit between its C-Class and E-Class sedans.

Unlike those other CL models though, the CLE is strictly a two-door, launching first as a hard-top coupe, with a Cabriolet to arrive at a later date.

The CLE is larger than the current C-Class sedan overall and longer than the E-Class, measuring in at 4850mm long, 1860mm wide, and 1428mm high, with a wheelbase some 25mm longer than the C-Class, but 8mm shorter than the E-Class.

Design-wise, it gets a long bonnet section, an aggressively angled roofline, and a sloped boot section with the brand’s latest signature light strip across the rear. Its face blends elements of both the current C-Class and E-Class, complete with the three-pointed star motif.

Expect a high level of standard features with at least 18-inch alloys, a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, an 11.9-inch multimedia suite with online connectivity and voice control, ambient interior lighting, synthetic leather interior trim with partially recycled materials, LED headlights and tail-lights, and up to 17-speakers for the audio system.

The CLE will have several options, including a headline 3.0-litre straight-six turbocharged petrol engine for the CLE450 4Matic, with a 48-volt mild-hybrid system capable of adding a 17kW/200Nm boost. It has total outputs of 280kW/500Nm. 

Standard features include an 11.9-inch multimedia suite with online connectivity.

Meanwhile, lesser variants score a 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged engine, producing either 150kW/320Nm in CLE200 form, or 190kW/400Nm in CLE300 4Matic form. All engine options are mated to a nine-speed torque converter automatic transmission.

The European market will also score a diesel CLE220 d (145kW/440Nm), and a plug-in hybrid is in the works too, although Mercedes-Benz Australia has said both styles of powertrain will no longer be brought to our market.

Other innovations from other recent Mercedes models include 15mm lower suspension as standard, as well as four-wheel steering and ‘dynamic body control’ continuously adjustable dampers on particular variants.

The CLE is strictly a two-door, launching first as a hard-top coupe, with a Cabriolet to arrive at a later date.

The CLE Coupe hard-top is set to arrive in Europe in November of 2023, while the drop-top Cabriolet version is set to arrive later in 2024.

Stay tuned later in the year for more information on the model for an Australian launch.

Expect it to start higher than the current C-Class Coupe, which starts from $79,200 before on-road costs. For context, its key BMW 4 Series rival costs from $83,500, and the Audi A5 starts from $78,500.

Tom White
Senior Journalist
Despite studying ancient history and law at university, it makes sense Tom ended up writing about cars, as he spent the majority of his waking hours finding ways to drive as many as possible. His fascination with automobiles was also accompanied by an affinity for technology growing up, and he is just as comfortable tinkering with gadgets as he is behind the wheel. His time at CarsGuide has given him a nose for industry news and developments at the forefront of car technology.
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