by Adrian-Liviu Dorofte
e-mail: mercedesbenzblog@gmail.com

The all new Mercedes-Benz CLS Shooting Brake: Close-up topics on the 5-door coupé

I. The wooden luggage compartment floor - Inspired by exclusive yachts

An extravagant feature inspired by the interiors of exclusive yachts is the designo wooden luggage compartment floor, which serves to underscore the hand-crafted nature of the interior. Cherry tree wood is a classic among fine wood varieties and contrasts perfectly with the inlaid smoked oak and aluminium rails. This affords the luggage compartment a touch of elegance normally found on yachts, combined with the exciting worlds of technology and precision craftsmanship. The wood is characterised by its flexibility and elasticity, as well as its density and fine texture.


For the American cherry wood luggage compartment floor, specially selected veneer sheets are glued and pressed by hand in five layers to attain a high level of dimensional stability. The blanks are milled to their exact format using a CNC machine and the surfaces are ground smooth and impregnated to bring out the wood's natural beauty.

Dark fumed oak inlays, precision-cut in narrow three-millimetre strips using laser technology, lend a definitive finishing touch to the design of the luggage compartment floor. Four lavishly produced aluminium rails feature a brushed finish and rubber inserts, and not only help to protect the wooden floor but also feature anti-slip properties. The designo wood luggage compartment floor is available in combination with the EASY-PACK load-securing kit.

II. The positioning - No compromises

The Shooting Brake highlights Mercedes-Benz's leading role when it comes to new vehicle concepts. As such, it represents the latest in a long line of vehicle concepts which have had a far-reaching impact on the market, such as the SLK, which defined a new type of vehicle in 1996 as the first roadster with a lowerable steel roof, the M-Class which was introduced as the first premium SUV in 1998 or the four-door CLS Coupé from 2004.

The CLS Shooting Brake is neither a coupé nor an estate. Rather, it is a totally new form of sports car, with five seats and a large tailgate. The CLS Shooting Brake is a special proposition for a very special type of customer: architects, collectors, travellers – people who do not wish to compromise. It is a special product for people who stand apart from the mainstream and who do not wish to forego sportiness or luggage space as they travel in style. Its special status is also revealed by the fact that it is categorised as a coupé by the Federal Motor Transport Authority.

III. How the name "Shooting Brake" arose - Exclusive sports car with high recreational utility value

Brake, or the identically sounding Break, was the name once given to carriages which were commonly fitted out with light, variable bodies to transport hunting equipment, for example. For larger hunting parties, seats were fitted so as to offer greater comfort to those participating in the hunt. Such vehicles which were taken out on shoots were referred to as shooting brakes or shooting breaks. Motorised Shooting Brakes were particularly popular in England in the 1960s and 1970s – exclusive crossover vehicles combining the luxury and style of a coupé with the luggage capacity of an estate.

A typical example of this exclusive design is the Aston Martin DB 5 Shooting Brake, the prototype of which was produced by the Aston Martin factory for its then owner, David Brown. A further dozen of this vehicle were subsequently produced by way of conversion measures by bodybuilder Harold Radford. The E-Type Jaguar converted into a Shooting Brake achieved cult status in the film Harold & Maude. The one-off car was destroyed in the scene in the film in which it is driven over a cliff. The Lynx company converted precisely 67 Jaguar XJSs into Shooting Brakes between 1982 and 2002, marketing them under the name Lynx Eventer. One-off cars were also built on the basis of Ferrari sports cars, such as the Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Shooting Break produced by Panther Westwinds in 1974.






Credits: Daimler AG

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