In recent years, all the rules seem to be overturned regarding the usual size of engines. Another example of this is the latest standard version of the Mercedes four-door coupe, the CLS 260, which has just emerged in China.
The car’s nose gets a 1.5-liter four-cylinder turbo engine, which seems particularly small for a body of at least 1.8 tonnes and nearly five meters.
However, the numbers do not support the conjecture: on the one hand, it is a particularly powerful engine variant with 184 horsepower and 280 Nm of peak torque, and on the other hand, in a mild hybrid system with a 9-speed automatic transmission.
The extra torque of the electric motor and the many selectable gears help to avoid operating conditions where the small motor would have difficulty coping with the large body.
The Mercedes CLS 260 doesn’t go too bad either. It can accelerate to 62 mph (100 km/h) in 8.7 seconds and reach a 155 mph (250 km/h) top speed, with fuel consumption rated at 32.7 mpg US (7.2 l/100 km).
And why is the Mercedes CLS 260 needed? To make the CLS more attractive to Chinese customers: due to the tax rules there, they can buy the CLS significantly cheaper compared to the previous basic model, the four-cylinder but two-liter CLS 300. Of course, the basic CLS is not cheap either, in China 576,800 yuan or $81,332, is asked for it. For the equivalent of $69,950 American customers can get a 3.0-liter turbocharged six-cylinder engine delivering 362 HP and 369 lb-ft (500 Nm), in the base CLS 450.