2023 Mercedes-Benz CLE Could Replace E- and C-Class Convertibles

Spy photos of a new droptop Benz, plus a renewed trademark for the CLE-class name, suggest that the automaker will streamline its coupe and convertible lineup.

2023 mercedesbenz cleclass spied
Brian Williams
  • Mercedes is set to introduce a new coupe and convertible model called the CLE-class, according to a report by AutoExpress.
  • The CLE will serve as a replacement for both the C-class and E-class coupe and convertible variants as Mercedes reduces the number of models in its lineup.
  • We expect to see the CLE debut in 2022 as a 2023 model.

    Mercedes-Benz at one point sold six distinct convertible models, but the automaker is drastically reducing the number of droptops in its lineup. The S-class convertible and SLC-class are already gone, and now new spy photos and a renewed U.S. trademark for the name "CLE" suggest that a single model will replace the two-door versions of the C-class and E-class.

    Set to be sold as both a two-door coupe and a convertible, the CLE-class appears to be the spiritual successor to the previous CLK-class, which similarly bridged a gap between the C-class and E-class sedans. It will likely be mechanically similar to the new W206 C-class sedan, which will come standard with a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four in the U.S. We could see a CLE300 model as the base version, with a possible CLE450 using the turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six found in the E-class.

    2023 mercedesbenz cleclass spied
    Brian Williams

    In these spy photos, we can see that the CLE-class convertible is a bit more swoopy and stylish than the C-class four-door, with wider proportions and a more shapely rear end. It has a cloth softtop rather than a heavy and complex retractable hardtop. Its closest competitors will be the BMW 4-series and Audi A5 convertibles, both of which also have softtops.

    We expect the outgoing C-class coupe and convertible models to be discontinued for 2022, while the E-class two-doors may stick around for a little longer until the CLE-class is revealed. Its starting price will likely be somewhere around $60,000.

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