Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz has posted record-breaking sales in 2011 with more than 1.26 million vehicles, which is 8 percent higher. Also, it forecasts more growth as it launches new models such as the upcoming A class. Daimler Chief Executive Dieter Zetsche shared that in 2012, they will continue with their product offensive and will launch more vehicles on the market.
Aside from the refurbished A class, Mercedes intends to introduce the new CLS shooting brake as well as the high-end SL coupe later this year. Last month, Mercedes brand sales increased 15.1 percent to 124,387 units aided by the strong growth in the U.S., China and emerging markets like Brazil and Russia.
The sales boost helped the brand to hit the best-selling quarter in its history with sales of 341,624 units in the three-month period ending in December.
In China, sales of the Mercedes brand increased 30.6 percent to 193,339 units from January to December. Last month, sales grew 29.5 percent to 23,227 units. The statistics include sales in Hong Kong.
In Russia, Mercedes sold 29,058 units last year, an increase by 47.3 percent. In Brazil, sales grew 35.3 percent to 10,197 units in 2011. Meanwhile, Mercedes experienced an increase in sales by 13.3 percent to 245,231 units last year in its second largest market -- the U.S. December sales in the U.S. leaped 27.9 percent to 25,701 units, boosted by the new-generation variants of the M-class and C-class models.
The best word to describe the proportions of the CLS-Class from Mercedes-Benz is that it is outrageous given how the dynamic roof manages to sweep back to the rear at an angle and the fact that it has a long bonnet as well as narrow windows with frameless sides.
In fact, it was in 2003 when the brand first unveiled this range and instantly the CLS-Class became a new style icon. Ever since then, while the proportions of this four-door Coupe remain the same, almost everything is new. An entirely new look is what one would expect from the second-generation of this line. As expected from a model belonging to the CLS-Class, the quality that dominates it is its outline given the long proportions. While it does have a sporty and dynamic shape, this is improved by how the areas and the lines now interact.
Take its front section for instance, specifically the structure that is on top of the wings. One is bound to notice a rather innovative design feature wherein this structure narrows towards the rear.
Designers call it as the dropping line and serves as a new version of the formal design elements that go back to the past and the celebrated sports cars from Mercedes with the rich array of forms. One distinguishing feature of the new CLS-Class is the high performance headlamps which use LED.
This is the first time that a vehicle has all of the usual dynamic light functions utilize LED technology. Aside from being a pioneering feature, it has an extraordinary design. Inside these headlamps, there are three layers shaped like arrows from bottom to top.
On its upper layer is an LED indicator under which has an LED side light to deliver LED low beam functions. This side light is not limited to this function as it can be observed as well if the dipped beam function is activated. The result is a new and separate night-time design that has its own unique look. At the headlamp’s lowest level meanwhile is where the night view functions and the main beam are located. Overall, there are 71 LEDs in total which gives it that distinct look.
If the CLS-Class has an interesting design with regards to the LEDs, the front comes with a design that evokes an image of the SLS AMG though it is innovative by itself. With the radiator grille not being integrated to its bonnet, it highlights further the sporty and long appearance of the latter. Taking up a large part of the grille is a large star in its center which shows its relationship to the brand’s other coupes and thus solidifies the identity of the brand.
Adding to the already sporty look are the elongated dark air inlets that have black grilles. At its side, one can see the wide wrap-around tail lights which also have LED technology and that are shaped in a manner as to link the rear. Its broad shoulder line is able to support the hardtop and can be seen from behind. This same shoulder line helps highlight the shape of the vehicle.
Enhancing the visual impact on its rear section are the wide metal inserts. This sporty look is also made possible by the shoulder line positioned on top of the rear axle. Its flared wheel arches meanwhile look like the strong thighs of a predator ready to attack a prey.