Sedan sales may be falling but the situation is even worse when it comes to convertibles. As a result, most automakers have reduced the number of convertibles they offer or completely eliminated body styling.
Mercedes-Benz has had one of the most diverse convertibles in recent years but it is also in the process of streamlining its convertible services. We’ve seen the SLK-Class, S-Class Cabriolet and AMG GT Roadster all discounted, with a new AMG SL launched to fill the gap.
Next, we expect convertible versions of the C-Class and E-Class to be phased out gradually and replaced with a single model called the CLE-Class Cabriolet. We’ve discovered a prototype for the regular CLE-Class Cabriolet and now we have a prototype for what will likely be a 53-level CLE from AMG.
We will see both variants that will appear on the market next year, in the form of 2023 or 2024 models.
The factors that indicate this particular prototype are an AMG including large wheels and combined brakes, large front wind doors and dual exhaust at the rear. If cle 63 level is launched, we expect to see quad exhaust heads at the back.
It’s unclear what’s going on in the powertrain department but a good bet is the same setup introduced in the recently revealed SL 43. The setup includes a 2.0-liter inline-4 turbocharged engine that produces 381 horsepower on its own, plus a rainbow-system that can increase by 14 horsepower temporarily. The engine also has an electrified turbocharger similar to what is used in Formula One. An electric motor is used to spin the turbo’s compressor at a low rev number, which eliminates latency and gives the same performance range as that of the larger naturally aspirated engine.
As for the roof, Mercedes looks set to go with a soft hood design, just like on the new SL. However, the roof is heavily camouflaged on the prototype so we can’t see the real shape.
Keep an eye on updates as the development process continues.