My Love/Hate With Modern Mercedes-Benz


Mercedes-Benz has long been ahead of the apex in terms of technology and styling, save for the dreaded 9-year Chrysler merger that even the Stuttgart based automaker would rather forget. With timeless designs, solid construction, and cutting edge features it’s easy to see why Mercedes has been around for 125 years.

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Recently however, there’s been a change.  The posterior of all new Merc saloons seem to suffer from what can be described as “droopy butt syndrome”. This can be seen starting from the CLA all the way up to the S-Class. In fact, the side profile of all the saloons flowing towards the rear quarter have strikingly similar body lines.

This design language seems to be popular in Germany in general, with the four-door coupe being a common theme in all three camps. Audi has the A7, BMW has several “GranCoupe” quad-door versions of traditional bi-door coupes, and of course all of Mercedes-Benz saloons have this design staple.

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Unfortunately, this saggy posterior doesn’t really compliment the bold, aggressive styling found in the front of most Mercedes today. For me, bold styling should follow through from start to finish, don’t dial it back from a 10 to a 4 as you move along. However, in all fairness this is most likely a result of the wind tunnel and CAD design, because the CLA has a super slick drag coefficient of only 0.23cd. You can thank German efficiency for your saggy derrieres.

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Exterior styling aside, the inside of most Benz products are a very special place to be indeed. Right from when you close the door you’re rewarded with a solid thud that screams quality, to when you reach for the infotainment controls and feel the fluid clicks of the dial between radio stations. This is especially true in the top tier models like the all-new C63.

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Looks aside, the pros far outweigh the cons of driving a modern Mercedes-Benz. Their lineup is the strongest it’s ever been and all without the extreme fragmentation that BMW seems to have dug its self into with their rather contradictory naming conventions and ninety-seven available choices of cars wearing the roundel. Of course choice is good, but I do miss the days of just having 3, 5, and 7-series. Maybe I’m old fashioned.