Cabriolets have always belonged to the fringes, but today’s times do not particularly favor them. They have practically disappeared from the mainstream, and their offer is gradually being cut down by even premium brands. For example, Mercedes has recently dropped the open SLC, S-class and AMG GT Roadster from its range. It also said goodbye to the E-Class and C-Class Cabriolets and merged them into one model – the CLE Cabriolet just introduced.

The car was first shown to us last summer, but only now are we learning all the important details. The novelty is 4,860 mm long and has a generous wheelbase of 2,865 mm. So it sits just below the flagship SL and Mercedes says it is the largest model in the segment. It wasn’t that hard, was it?

At the same time, it will be among the most practical. After all, its trunk can hold up to 385 liters (90 less if the roof is down), while the rear seats can be folded in a 60:40 ratio using the buttons in the trunk. The acoustic fabric roof can be black, red or grey. It has a multi-layer structure to provide maximum thermal comfort even in bitter winter. It retracts automatically in 20 seconds at a speed of up to 60 km/h.

Photo: Mercedes-Benz

Many convertibles don’t look good with the roof up. But open CLE is an honorable and very sexy exception.

And now to the mentioned smart gadgets. The Mercedes CLE Cabriolet gets synthetic leather seats as standard, but for an extra charge you can replace them with genuine leather with a special surface treatment that reflects the sun’s rays more effectively in the sun. In practice, it has been shown that these seats exposed to direct sunlight are up to 12 degrees Celsius cooler.

There is also the so-called Airscarf, which is an opening built into the front headrests from which pleasant warm air can blow on your neck. The electrically adjustable Aircap system is a deflector above the windshield that sends the flowing air over the heads of the passengers. Thanks to this (as well as the traditional wind deflector at the back), there is no air “mess” in the interior even at higher speeds. Who said you can’t ride with the open sky overhead all year round?

Photo: Mercedes-Benz

Prim screens play in the cabin. In the front, you sit in sporty shaped seats with heating and ventilation.

The range of engines is also varied. In all cases, these are mild hybrids, where the electric motor can deliver an additional twenty-three horses to the maximum output in a short period of time. Surprisingly, diesel also appears in the menu, the 220d version has a two-liter turbodiesel with an output of 197 horsepower. There are also two 2-liter gasoline engines with 204 and 258 hp, the first with four-wheel drive as an option, the second as standard.

At the top is the CLE 450 4Matic variant, under the hood of which beats an in-line six-cylinder gasoline engine with an output of 381 horsepower and a torque of 500 newton meters. The convertible accelerates to 100 km/h in 4.7 seconds and calmly continues to a maximum speed of 250 km/h. Unofficial information whispers something about an even hotter AMG version with over 440 horsepower, but we’ll have to wait for that.

At home in Germany, customers can already order the CLE Cabriolet, the price list starts at 1,650,000 CZK, the top six-cylinder costs from 2.2 million. The first pieces should appear on Czech roads during this year. If you hurry, you might still catch this season!

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