New Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class brings back inline-six to take on BMW

Interesting, News | November 28th, 2017 by 72
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We’re only a few days away from the release of the Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class. Because we aren’t there yet, there’s an embargo on the CLS, meaning …

We’re only a few days away from the release of the Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class. Because we aren’t there yet, there’s an embargo on the CLS, meaning journalists aren’t allowed to post anything about it until the embargo lifts. Despite that, Australia’s Motoring magazine accidentally released it a few days early and then promptly took it down. However, before it was taken down, some people saved the images of it and some information. (We aren’t going to post them, as we don’t want to mess with the embargo, even if it wasn’t leaked by us. But they can be seen here)

Spoiler alert, though, it’s not very good looking. In fact, it’s quite ugly. Which is a real shame, considering the potential of Mercedes’ current design language and the fact that both preceding CLS-Classes were great looking. However, we’re not here to talk about its droopy, milquetoast styling. Instead we’re here to talk about its new engine, which could be absolutely brilliant.

Mercedes-Benz is bringing back the inline-six engine, a configuration that’s beloved among car enthusiasts. Straight-six engines will always have a place in enthusiasts’ hearts, thanks to their simplicity, durability, noise and modern rarity. BMW is the only company that’s still keeping the I6 going strong and has a rich history using it. Mercedes used to have some really good inline-six engines but stopped making them in favor of cheaper, easier to package V6 engines. Now, though, the folks in Stuttgart are bringing the I6 back and it’s going to be the most high-tech and interesting six-cylinder engine on the market.

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Mercedes-Benz Inline-Six

The biggest reason why companies are shying away from inline-six engines is packaging. Due to their length, they’re difficult to package in modern cars that require so much safety tech. So Mercedes effectively shortened the length of its I6 engine by making it beltless. There are no belt-driven pulleys on the front of the engine. Everything is run electrically, as the new engine uses a 48-volt electrical system to power all of the ancillary systems, such as the water pump. Without pulleys on the front, it makes packaging an I6 much easier.

This new Mercedes-Benz I6 engine will displace 3.0 liter and pack two turbochargers and will make about 360 hp. That number could rise to around 500 hp in hotter configurations. That makes it a very potent and configurable engine, one that could be seen in many new Mercedes-Benz and Mercedes-AMG models.

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It’s nice to see another manufacturer aside from BMW making straight-six engines. This new Merc I6 seems to be very impressive and we’re very interesting to see how it stacks up against the Bavarians’ efforts. BMW has been making I6 engines for quite a bit longer and has basically perfected it. The new B58 3.0 liter turbocharged I6 is as close to perfection as it gets and could be the best six-cylinder engine on the market, all things considered. So we’re very excited to test this new engine against BMW’s B58. We just hope we don’t have to do it in the CLS-Class. Yikes, it’s bad.

72 responses to “New Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class brings back inline-six to take on BMW”

  1. Icebreakerr says:

    i just saw the leaked spyshots, the rear looks SO UGLY and i was a fan of the CLS.

    • Right? I’m a fan of the current CLS but this new one…woof.

      • Icebreakerr says:

        not sure what they were thinking I follow the merc head designer on Instagram it was like he was implying that they were the First to make a 4 door coupe type model and have perfected it even more lol I knew they couldnt beat the beauty of the 6 series gran coupe and doubt they can beat the 8 series gran coupe too but I think the AMG GT4 will have more aggressive styling than the CLS

  2. Joshua Stein says:

    I was a fan of the previous design but this one is just eh, the side is ok, but the front looks like a messed up mustang with the ugly grille, and i hate those angular headlights and taillights, and while i do like the interior, i wish MB had at least made some changes to the design as its just the same as an E-class, except this car will most likely be $85K+, so the only thing good left to hope for is that sweet inline 6, honestly disappointed in the design, especially after all the luxurious designs they’ve had recently. The 6GC may be an old design, but it is still the most beautiful and luxurious design of the class.

    • Evan Strait says:

      The front looks like a Ford Fusion… I was looking at it today with a friend and all the while all I was saying was “Ugh! Oh my God! It’s so ugly. Oh my God. Really? Oh my God I can’t believe that’s it.” And then he took a look and pointed out the Fusion semblance and it was clear as day.

  3. Sakashi baguri says:

    After decades of holding onto disgusting v6, Mercedes finally came to its sense and brought back the inline six. V6 is a shiite engine they never should’ve switched to. Question is, will Mercedes inline 6 be better than BMW’s? Doubtful, but they might be in terms of reliability.

    • Icebreakerr says:

      merc and reliability? lol

      • Sakashi baguri says:

        Are you on dope? Merc is way better than bmw in terms of reliability. I’m not saying merc is reliable, but they are when compared to bmw.

        • MagnumOpus says:

          Way better according to which stats?

          • Sakashi baguri says:

            How about you research by yourself instead of being lazy? I consider myself no expert by any means but obviously you have no clue about cars, maybe now’s the time for you to learn so hopefully you can avoid embarrassment like this in the future.

          • Tumelo Malumane says:

            “Do your own research” spoken like a real airhead who has no cooking clue what they’re talking about and has no facts to base their opinion on. If your opinion can only be backed by “do your own research” then that is what it will stay as, an opinion, not a fact. Your response is childish.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Consumer Reports: BMW #5.
            Mercedes #14.
            MagnumOpus’ question is legit.
            Your statements are not.
            “…maybe now’s the time for you to learn so hopefully you can avoid embarrassment like this in the future.”

          • Sakashi baguri says:

            Wow You bring one survey result and claim bmw is more reliable? Do you realize can star blue’s recent survey shows vw got top 5 star rating beating merc and bmw? When your consumer reports result shows vw in a very differnt position? Wow If you know about these car surveys, These so called survey results vary big time to each other, even when it’s done in a same period time. Just Live in your own rosy dream believe what you want, i won’t fix you its not my problem.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            VW are ahead of BMW in fines & legal fees also. Wouldn’t give VAG a dime.

          • MagnumOpus says:

            If you wish to engage in a mature manner, you are more than welcome (applies to others on this thread) – however, in the manner you respond it is clear you are not capable, thus I will leave you to enjoy with your own type.

        • marcellus2 says:

          They are both very unreliable.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Typing something doesn’t make it real.
            Ask the President.

          • marcellus2 says:

            Setting one know-it-all troll right one at the time… Does.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Two.
            Keep reading.

          • marcellus2 says:

            You, Sir, are very unlearned and highly opinionated. Grew up sitting the backseat of a 1800ti sedan. 3.0 sedan and CSI. Oversteer crashed my 1502 at 60mph…Drove early M5, 528… Piles of manure. Went on to better and bolder.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Bought an 8 yr. old E9, have worked @ 3 dealers. Splitleather still smelt new all the years I owned it, Metalchrome scratched, wood veneer dash chipped – damn that Karmann! But a gorgeous car that drove beautifully, cut highway trip times in half. If you need to feel better calling strangers unlearned? Go for it! I am highly opinionated based on experience. Which is different from yours. Thankfully. These piles of manure still entertain me. What is better and bolder? 4 cyl. Chinese Volvo? Rebadged Toyota or VAG? AMG Mercedes? Because Mercedes can’t build their own performance engines? Saab? Oops! Opel? Oops? Wtf?!

          • marcellus2 says:

            Sweetie pie, dealers don’t hire the best. E9? 9 Refers to 9 additional faults?

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Even as unlearned as I am, I know a troll when I read one. Or when I’m downwind. U stink.

          • marcellus2 says:

            Yep, unlearned.

          • Sakashi baguri says:

            I totally agree with you. Both are unreliable. I was just saying bmw is worse when compared to merc. Watch this ongoing bmw owners’ desperate rant to deny the fact to defend the resale value of their bmw. Funny as.

          • marcellus2 says:

            Agree. But most BMW driver rent their cars. They cannot afford to buy. Funny as.

  4. John188 says:

    They already have all those inline engines, for about a half year now, in the restyled S class.

  5. jason bourne says:

    Is that first pic an actual engine? Looks more like part of a car after it’s gone through a crusher.

  6. Arunabh says:

    Taking BMW at its own game, that interesting !!

    I doubt they can match the BMW’s superlative drivetrain experience though !!

    • marcellus2 says:

      Divorced from reality? It’s a cheaply manufactured sedan…the rest just happens in your imaschinatiooon

      • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

        BMW have been doing inline sixes for decades, original 328 won the 1940 Mille Miglia with one. BMW built them when everyone else went to cheaper to manufacture, easier to package V6’s. They followed the 2002 by putting I6’s in 3 Series, NO competition! Guess that’s why they could charge so much for their “cheaply manufactured sedan…in your imaschinatiooon.” Wtf?!

        • marcellus2 says:

          Yes they are. Plastichrome and splitleather is cheap. BMW admitted in a British court that their engine/drivetrain is made to last 60 000mls. Add underengineered.

          Now BMW did not race formula cars before WW2. They were considered a joke. Ggle Dixie. Most 328 looked like a joke.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Yes, why they still produce 328s profitably 80 yrs. later, guess that’s why they warranty them as long as they do (& throw maintenance in in some markets). Since you don’t understand volume mass production, BMW, unlike other manufacturers, are not handcrafted by Keebler cookie elves in magical trees. BMW will sell you that, though. It’s called Rolls Royce, comes from a magical hole in the ground called Goodwood. Cost more, though. So I’m told. Wouldn’t know. I enjoy Plastichrome splitleather. Wtf?!

          • marcellus2 says:

            A Rolls is technically a 5 series with a bigger turd of an engine. Yes, you enjoy mediocrity. See my little avatar pic? 550hp NA at 7000 and 950kg streetracer. Nothing BMW ever made can touch it. My engineering is better than theirs. Period. Don’t f with me.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            I actually come here to learn about a brand I enjoy.
            You?

          • marcellus2 says:

            Me, here? Call it a car accident. Nothing to learn here.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            So true!
            Of u.

          • marcellus2 says:

            Unreal isn’t it? For you it’s all about perception, bubbleboy. Off now, my 69 Rebel SST 343 oil is now warm. 450hp grocery getting coupe awesomeness.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Still unrelated to the page you’re typing on.
            U r a car accident.

          • marcellus2 says:

            4 wheels. Engines don’t care whose lettering is embossed on valve cover. Wake up dude. Low CoG, massive displacement, rwd, lightweight, front or rear mid engine, fat tires and though rear axle. BMW and Merc fail on all but one count. Duds

          • Abdilla the Arab says:

            Shiite Man you know cars..i believe you.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Yet you continue to troll other articles. That you think a Rolls Royce is a 5 Series & an AMC Rebel is a sports car (wtf?!) is laughable. Your car is one of the reasons they went under.

          • marcellus2 says:

            A RR shares most parts with a 5 series. Sad but true. A Rebel is a though little car with a big engine. My expertise is 30 years of making cars handle and go fast. Yep. This is a sportscar. It’s outhandles your E9 alldaylong. No I would not start out with a BMW…stuff is just bad.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Didn’t ask.

          • marcellus2 says:

            …and I thought you here to “learn”

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Nothing to learn from u. U r full of poop that u troll a site about a brand you hate. Enjoy your Rambler.

          • marcellus2 says:

            Sweetie pie. I type this very slowly for you…so that your challenged intellect can follow.

            I look at the tech. I am an engineer. I don’t care about brands. I raced vintage Lotus Europa, Cobras, new Lotus, Alfa 75 turbo Evo, Alpine turbos, Nova. Now an SST. My daily driver is a beautiful 54 Chevy truck . I had more cars in my life that you ever will. I was responsible for the design of some of the fugliest as well as beautiful cars. There is nothing I would even consider buying from VW Group, BMW or Merc. Cheap blingy crap for drones.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Why r u typing?
            Rhetorical question.
            Don’t care.

          • marcellus2 says:

            It will have an effect on you and others down the line. Denial first. Do what you want with it, teletubby

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Nothing.

          • marcellus2 says:

            Denial. Done this before. Knowledge is everything.You lack spades of it.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            U might be happier on a Trumpf page.
            I know everyone else would be.

          • marcellus2 says:

            Live in the bluest of blue states. We stop him wherever possible.What did you do lately?

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Ignored you. Good job on stopping him.

          • disqus_qIG7IeaME3 says:

            Since I lack knowledge in spades, absolutely none of your g.d. business. But I am consistent, have loathed him since the 1st foreign wife. Haven’t been this happy to be Canuck since Expo ’67. I was 8. As far as stopping him goes – good work.

          • marcellus2 says:

            Tu es francophone? Sa sert à une traduction Google. OHLALA. Leider hast dich in der Sprache vertan. Deutsch wär besser. Hier ein uralter Benz Witz: Mein letzter Wagen wird ein Mercedes sein :-).

            As far as vintage. This not a roadster…it’s a roadregistered race car with a power to weight ratio that’s better than a Bugatti while weighting less than half.

  7. Jackey says:

    Look properly, this is no beltless engine..

  8. Hahn says:

    They messed up the look completely…complete let down after Audi brought new A7 beast. 6 GC is still head turner and one of the best looking BMWs im past in past 10, 15 yrs…

  9. marcellus2 says:

    How nice. Beltless I6 engine. That’s what Merc had when they licensed the 1929 Stovebolt design from GM in 1950 and turned it into a destroked dog in the 300SL and Pagode. This one looks like a maintenance nightmare…especially in a compact. High reving I6 self-destruct. Physics. Shortlifespan seems the design goal here.

  10. Tobias Werner says:

    We’ll show that stupid BMW engineers how to make the best inline six engine in the world.

  11. Distiller says:

    So Mercedes: Now that you guys are again on the right path with those Inline-6 engines, next step is to get rid of those iPads and do proper dashboards!

  12. Senne says:

    lol what the heck is that new CLS? It’s like the OLD CLS (not the current, but like the one before that!). UGLY AF! Very sad, I actually liked the current CLS as well (though it didn’t come close to the 6 GC beauty, but still).

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