2022 Mercedes-Benz CLS gets an elegance upgrade

Mercedes-Benz's curvaceous sedan is getting a refresh, with the 2022 Mercedes CLS revamping its exterior styling and throwing in new tech for the cabin. Arriving at US dealers in early 2022, initially as the CLS 450 4MATIC, the new CLS still has the arching roofline and "four-door coupe" aesthetic it was instrumental in popularizing.

Under the hood there's Mercedes' familiar 3.0-liter inline-6 turbo, with the automaker's 48V mild-hybrid system. That promises 362 horsepower from 5,500 rpm and 369 lb-ft of torque from 1,600 rpm, with EQ Boost capable of contributing up to 21 hp and up to 184 lb-ft for short periods.

A 9G-TRONIC 9-speed automatic transmission is standard, as is all-wheel drive, and Mercedes says the CLS 450 4MATIC should do 0-60 mph in around 4.5 seconds. Top speed is an electronically-limited 130 mph. No word on economy figures yet – they'll come closer to launch, by the time the EPA has had a chance to weigh in – but Mercedes is promising an uptick in economy versus a typical six-cylinder gas engine.

On the front, there's new bumper with more distinctive air intakes. The grille gets a new design with a 3D star pattern featuring chrome-glass surfaces. Its louvers are finished in high-gloss black with chrome inlays, and the Mercedes star is integrated too.

There's a front splitter – finished in silver chrome – and new side louvres too. At the back, there's a reworked bumper with a black diffuser-look insert, together with silver chrome trim. 19-inch wheels are standard, and there's an AMG Body Styling package for those who want something that looks a little more aggressive.

That adds a special front bumper, AMG sill trim on the sides, a new chrome front splitter, and areo-flics in high-gloss black. There are also two finishes for the 20-inch AMG multi-spoke light-alloy wheels.

Inside, meanwhile, there's a new selection of upholstery options. Heated front seats with memory are standard, as is leather, and a new Nappa leather-wrapped multifunction steering wheel with the capacitive sensors and buttons familiar from the E-Class. The MBUX infotainment system runs on both a 12.3-inch driver display and a matching 12.3-inch center touchscreen. That supports "Hey Mercedes" voice triggering along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

There's 64-color ambient lighting, a sunroof, and keyless start as standard, along with blind-spot warnings. On the options list are augmented reality navigation, a head-up display, wireless phone charging, a heated steering wheel, and a 360-degree camera. Active parking assistance, an integrated dashcam, and the Night Package are all available too, as is the Driver Assistance Package with adaptive cruise control, active steering assistance, and route-based speed adaptation.

Pricing will be confirmed closer to launch. For context, the current CLS starts at $70,300 (plus destination).