What Changed for 2009:
- Grand Edition announced for limited production
- Race-inspired CLK63 AMG model dropped
- CLK350 and CLK550 continue, in coupe and cabriolet form
- All models gain heated seats and 6-disc CD changer
In the mid-1990s, Mercedes-Benz
dropped the E-Class
coupe. It was replaced for the 1998 model year by a smaller, brand-new C-Class coupe-the CLK-which inherited many of the styling features and appointments found in the outgoing E-Class. Mercedes-Benz promoted their new CLK on the racing circuit, too. In fact, the Mercedes-Benz CLK-GTR was a V-12 racecar used in the 1997 FIA GT championships, while the CLK DTM AMG was built for the German Touring Car Masters. As redesigned for the 2003 season
, the 2009 CLK continues as the second generation of the midsize luxury coupe, available in both coupe and cabriolet (convertible) body styles. Heated seats and a 6-disc CD changer have joined the standard-equipment list. New 18-inch, 6-twin-spoke wheels are installed on the CLK350 when it's equipped with the AMG Sport package. Otherwise, CLK350 and CLK550 models carry on with little change.
During the 2009 model year, Mercedes-Benz plans to launch a limited-production Grand Edition with 18-inch AMG wheels and Sport body styling. The production run will be extremely limited. Mercedes-Benz has also dropped the CLK63 AMG models with their high-performance engines this year.Model Lineup
Mercedes-Benz sells four CLK-Class models for 2009, with two engine choices, in both coupe and convertible body styles. The V-6-powered CLK350 coupe and V-8-powered CLK550 coupe are the standard offerings. Convertible CLK models include the V-6-powered CLK350 Cabriolet and V-8-powered CLK550 Cabriolet.
All 2009 Mercedes-Benz CLK models offer leather seating for 4 occupants; authentic wood trim; digital dual-zone automatic climate control with a sun sensor; 10-way power-adjustable front seats; and an in-dash 6-speaker audio system with new 6-disc CD changer as standard appointments. Options include several different premium packages. These offer upgrades such as bi-Xenon headlamps with active curve illumination, Keyless-Go operation, auto-dimming mirrors, wood/leather steering wheel, and ventilated front seats. CLK550 coupes and cabriolets have a sport suspension and 18-inch, 5-twin-spoke AMG wheels. A Sport package for CLK350 models includes 17-inch, 5-spoke wheels, as well as sport shock absorbers, perforated brake discs and Mercedes-Benz-branded calipers. The package also includes shorter springs for a slightly lower ride height. Vehicles equipped with the Sport package feature black ash wood trim, black headliner, dark carpeting, and a distinctive instrument cluster with white gauges.
The new Grand Edition coupes will be painted Palladium Silver with Tobacco Brown leather interiors. Each will feature beige upholstery stitching and aluminum trim. In cabriolet form, the Grand Edition will be Diamond White outside with Tobacco Brown leather, beige stitching, and dark brown ash wood trim.Powertrain
The standard engine, found in the CLK350, is a 3.5-liter V-6 rated at 268 hp and 258 lb.-ft. of torque. (2009 EPA fuel-economy estimates are 17 mpg city/25 mpg highway.) The CLK550 features a 5.5-liter V-8 engine rated at 382 hp with 391 lb.-ft. of torque. EPA estimates are 15 mpg city/22 mpg highway for the CLK550 coupe, and a slightly less frugal 15 mpg city/21mpg highway for the CLK550 Cabriolet. Both engines are mated to an electronically controlled 7-speed automatic transmission. All CLK models are rear-wheel drive and come with a 48-month/50,000-mile warranty. High-performance AMG editions are no longer offered.Safety
Driver and front passenger inside 2009 Mercedes-Benz CLK coupes are protected by front, side-impact and curtain air bags (coupes). Cabriolets have head/thorax air bags for front occupants. Seat belts offer emergency tensioning devices and force limiters. coupes are equipped with window curtain air bags, extending down the length of the passenger cabin. The rear-seat-mounted universal Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren (LATCH) system, for easier installation of infant and child seats, is standard across the model range. In addition to an Electronic Stability Program, each CLK model has anti-lock braking (ABS) with brake assist.
The current Mercedes-Benz CLK has not been crash tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA
) or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS
In the 2009 Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class models, technology takes a variety of forms. The rack-and-pinion steering rack is mounted on a deformable aluminum subframe, which does not impede absorption of crash energy during a collision, Mercedes says. Straight-line ASR traction control is installed, to help provide traction on slippery surfaces. When either front occupant closes the door, an electric motor extends an arm that carries the seat belt, for easy access. These belt "presenters" retract as soon as the belts are buckled, or after a certain amount of time has passed. Optional bi-Xenon headlamps include a high-pressure water-jet washing system to keep them clean and improve visibility. Dynamic adjusters shift their beams in response to steering angle, providing up to 90 percent more usable illumination when cornering. COMAND DVD-based navigation is another option.