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  3. The new Mercedes-AMG CLE 53 4MATIC+ Cabriolet: Open-Air fun meets performance

The new Mercedes-AMG CLE 53 4MATIC+ Cabriolet: Open-Air fun meets performance

12 May 2024
  • What are the exterior design features of the Mercedes-AMG CLE 53 4MATIC+ Cabriolet?
  • What are the interior design features of the Mercedes-AMG CLE 53 4MATIC+ Cabriolet?
  • What are the specifications of the Mercedes-AMG CLE 53 4MATIC+ Cabriolet?

The new CLE 53 4MATIC+ Cabriolet (energy consumption combined: 9.8-9.6 l/100 km | CO2 emissions combined: 223-217 g/km | CO2 class: G) now joins the SL Roadster as the second model from Mercedes-AMG for open-top driving fun. With its extensive standard equipment, spacious interior and comfort features including AIRCAP® or AIRSCARF®, the four-seater is fully suitable for year-round driving. The 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder engine with twin turbocharging has an output of 330 kW (449 hp) thanks to its exhaust turbocharger and additional electric compressor. The engine has a maximum torque of 560 Nm (600 Nm in overboost for up to 10 seconds). The integrated starter generator briefly provides an additional 17 kW (23 hp) of boost power and 205 Nm of torque. It also feeds the 48-volt electrical system. Other technical features of the new model include the AMG SPEEDSHIFT TCT 9G transmission, fully variable all-wheel drive AMG Performance 4MATIC+ and active rear-axle steering.

The new CLE 53 Cabriolet brings our hallmark AMG four-seater performance into the open air. The powerful six-cylinder, the sophisticated running gear and the variable all-wheel drive make it an incredibly dynamic car with a wide spectrum of usability. A whole range of design aspects such as the flared wheel arches and the big air intakes at the front add to its sporty look. It's a real dream car that's lots of fun to drive - not just on dream roads but on everyday trips, too.

Exterior design with wide, flared front and rear wheel arches

Exterior design with wide, flared front and rear wheel arches

Numerous AMG-specific features make the car’s body design stand out. AMG’s signature A-shaped radiator grille and the sharp, slender lines of the full-LED headlights create a look that is characteristic of the brand. DIGITAL LIGHT headlights with and without projection function are available as optional equipment. They feature daytime running light ellipses and blue illumination at the base of the headlights, which further enhances the car’s dynamic appearance. The striking front skirt rises in the centre to form an A-shape (‘A-Wing’) that accommodates a large air intake for increased air flow. The same applies to the outer air intakes with two horizontal fins.

Elegantly formed edges add structure to the profile. Meanwhile, flared front and rear wheel arches, a wide track (+58 millimetres at the front, +75 millimetres at the rear compared to the Mercedes-Benz model) and 19-inch wheels lend the new AMG Cabriolet a powerful appearance. Optional 20-inch wheels are also available. The muscular rear is characterised by flowing surfaces, smooth transitions and two-part LED lights with three-dimensional light bodies. A dark-red design element connects the taillights, emphasising the width of the car’s rear. Other notable elements include round double tailpipe trims that are harmoniously integrated into the rear skirt. The spoiler lip on the luggage compartment lid comes in body colour but is also available in black as part of the AMG Styling package.

The optional AMG Styling package adds even sportier accents. It includes flics on the front and rear skirts, a spoiler lip on the luggage compartment lid in high-gloss black and a diffuser panel between the tailpipe trims. Two AMG Night packages and AMG Carbon packages are available as options for additional customisation.

Interior with AMG-exclusive equipment and specific displays

Interior with AMG-exclusive equipment and specific displays

Eye-catching interior features include the free-standing 12.3-inch fully digital driver display and the 11.9-inch driver-oriented central display in portrait format. The latter features power tilting from 15 to 40 degrees to prevent distracting light reflections when the top is open. Another highlight is the optional dynamic ambient lighting with 64 colours. Strips of light sweep from the cockpit across the doors and rear side panels to behind the rear seats. This creates a stylish wraparound effect that is enhanced by two further enveloping details. Firstly, the upper section of the dashboard, the top edges of the doors and the soft-top cover panel are upholstered in a black nappa leather look. Secondly, the entire passenger compartment is edged in chrome.

To prevent them from overheating in summer, the leather seats have a special coating, which reflects the sun’s near infra-red waves. This feature keeps the leather up to 12 degrees cooler in direct sunlight than standard untreated leather. Even when the top is closed, the interior heats up less thanks to the cool seat covers.

Another highlight is the integral seats in ARTICO man-made leather and black MICROCUT microfibre with AMG-specific graphics and contrasting red topstitching. They combine a sporty look with outstanding lateral support. Other interior features include red seat belts and trim elements in high-gloss carbon. Numerous leather and nappa leather upholstery options are available on request. Customers who choose nappa leather will receive the AMG emblem embossed in the front headrests.

AMG Performance seats are also available as an option. They stand out with more pronounced bolsters for even more lateral support. Vertical openings add visual accents and improve ventilation. When specified with nappa leather, the seats are also accentuated in a contrasting colour.

The driver display allows the customer to choose between the Classic, Sport and Supersport display styles. The particularly striking AMG-exclusive Supersport style features a central round tachometer and driver-focused horizontal displays, which are located to the left and right of the tachometer, creating a sense of spatial depth. The AMG menu lets the driver call up a number of special views such as engine data, gear display, warm-up, set-up, G meter and race timer. The central display also emphasises the car’s dynamic character, with individual AMG displays such as the drive programmes and telemetry data.

In-line six-cylinder engine with integrated starter generator and additional electric compressor

In-line six-cylinder engine with integrated starter generator and additional electric compressor

The new CLE 53 4MATIC+ uses an extensively upgraded version of the proven M256 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder turbocharged engine. Now called M256M, this version of the high-performance engine impresses above all through its optimised combustion chambers with redesigned intake and exhaust ports. It also has new piston rings, modified injection and a new exhaust turbocharger, which offers an increased boost pressure of 1.5 bar (previously 1.1 bar). This results in a higher torque of 560 Nm in continuous operation and 600 Nm in overboost for up to ten seconds.

More crucial than the absolute torque is the improved torque build-up and more harmonious engine response. This is made possible by the additional electric compressor, which has also been enhanced. It can now run almost continuously for a longer period of time, an upgrade that customers will notice particularly in the medium rev range. This, in turn, allowed for a larger exhaust turbocharger for higher peak performance.

Customers also benefit from the engine’s increased efficiency, which is significantly improved, in particular, at full load. The second-generation integrated starter generator (ISG), which is now fitted in the transmission bell housing, also contributes to efficiency. As a central component of the 48-volt electrical system, it not only functions as an electric generator but also performs hybrid functions. This includes short boosts of 17 kW of power and 205 Nm of torque, recuperation, load point shifting, coasting and the almost imperceptible engine re-start in the start/stop function.

The electronically limited top speed of 250 km/h can be increased to 270 km/h with the optional AMG Driver’s package. The AMG high-performance brake system is designed to match the power and performance of the CLE 53 4MATIC+. It features 370 x 36 mm perforated and internally ventilated discs with four-piston fixed callipers and AMG lettering at the front and 360 x 26 mm internally ventilated discs with single-piston floating callipers at the rear.

Adapted shift times, high efficiency: AMG SPEEDSHIFT TCT 9G transmission

The 3.0-litre in-line engine is coupled with the AMG SPEEDSHIFT TCT 9G transmission featuring short shift times, quick response, the double-declutch function and multiple downshifts. The transmission immediately implements upshifts and downshifts and is especially responsive in the Sport+ drive programme and in manual mode. The choice of driving programme facilitates everything from dynamic acceleration manoeuvres and adapted shift times to a fuel-saving driving style. The galvanised shift paddles located behind the steering wheel on the left and right allow manual shifting of the AMG SPEEDSHIFT TCT 9G transmission.

Characteristics at your fingertips: AMG DYNAMIC SELECT

The five AMG DYNAMIC SELECT driving programmes – Slippery, Comfort, Sport, Sport+ and Individual – let the driver influence the car’s characteristics at the touch of a finger. They range from efficient and comfortable to highly dynamic, with modifications to important parameters such as engine response, transmission, suspension and steering. Independently of the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT driving programmes, the driver can switch directly to manual mode using the ‘M’ button, allowing them to shift exclusively using the steering wheel paddles. The driver can also select the suspension levels individually.

The AMG DYNAMICS handling control system is integrated into the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT driving programmes. In the Basic, Advanced and Pro levels, for example, it influences the control strategies of the ESP® (electronic stability programme) or the all-wheel drive. Based on the driver’s actions and sensor data, the intelligent pre-control system anticipates the desired vehicle behaviour. This ranges from stable to highly dynamic for a more comfort-oriented or especially sporty driving experience. The driver can also use the AMG steering wheel buttons to select the AMG DYNAMICS functions directly. The modifiable vehicle characteristics and the extensive equipment options allow for a wide spread between sportiness, elegance and lifestyle, depending on the customer’s individual preferences.

Fully variable AMG Performance 4MATIC+ all-wheel drive as standard

The fully variable AMG Performance 4MATIC+ all-wheel drive combines optimal traction for dynamic driving with a high level of driving safety under all conditions – on dry, wet and slippery surfaces. The intelligent all-wheel drive control is integrated into the car’s overall system architecture, enabling continuous transitions in both directions between rear and all-wheel drive. Torque is distributed based on the driving situation. When driving moderately, i.e. when all-wheel drive is not required, the front axle is decoupled to increase efficiency. From the ESP Sport setting and above, the torque distribution is more rear-focused. And in drift mode, the new AMG CLE 53 4MATIC+ Cabriolet operates exclusively in rear-wheel drive across the entire speed range.

Independent AMG RIDE CONTROL suspension for dynamic handling

The CLE 53 4MATIC+ Cabriolet uses the AMG RIDE CONTROL suspension, developed in Affalterbach, for increased agility, more neutral cornering and improved traction. With its particularly sporty damper tuning and adaptive adjustable damping, the steel spring suspension combines excellent handling with a high level of ride comfort. The damping on each wheel adapts to the current driving situation and road conditions. This is done quickly and precisely by means of separate valves in the dampers for rebound and compression. In addition, the damping characteristic can be selected in three stages – Comfort, Sport and Sport+ – to provide a noticeable difference between high long-distance comfort and sporty handling.

Three-stage AMG parameter steering and standard-fit rear-axle steering

The steering layout is another feature that contributes to the increase in dynamics and comfort. The CLE 53 4MATIC+ Cabriolet features three-stage AMG parameter steering that adapts to the selected driving programme. When manoeuvring and parking, little steering effort is required. At higher driving speeds, the adapted steering characteristics also provide significantly more feedback to the driver in the Sport and Sport+ suspension settings.

The standard-fit rear-axle steering operates with a maximum steering angle of 2.5 degrees. The rear wheels turn to this extent in the opposite direction to the front wheels at speeds of up to 100 km/h (variable depending on the AMG DYNAMICS setting). This virtually shortens the wheelbase for significantly more agile turn-in, less steering effort and improved manoeuvrability, resulting in a noticeably reduced turning circle when turning or parking. At speeds above 100 km/h (variable depending on the AMG DYNAMICS setting), the rear wheels turn parallel to the front wheels – up to a maximum of 0.7 degrees. The virtually lengthened wheelbase has a positive effect on directional stability. It results in a faster build-up of lateral force when changing direction, enabling the car to respond more directly to steering commands. The rear-wheel steering response depends on the selected AMG DYNAMIC SELECT driving programme.


The optional AMG DYNAMIC PLUS package offers a range of particularly sporty equipment details for an even more emotional driving experience. Highlights include RACE START and the RACE driving programme with drift mode. The AMG Performance steering wheel in MICROCUT microfibre features steering wheel buttons for quick control of the driving programmes and other handling settings. Red brake callipers with AMG lettering front and rear underscore the car’s sporty character. The active engine mounts ensure a situation-dependent spread between comfortable and sporty in the connection between the engine and the body.

The high level of everyday comfort for year-round open-top fun is ensured by the electric wind deflector system AIRCAP® and neck-level heating and ventilation with AIRSCARF®. Both systems have been upgraded and come as standard. They make open-top driving even more comfortable in cool outside temperatures. AIRCAP® consists of two elements. The wind deflector on the windscreen redirects the airflow over the heads of the occupants. It extends at the touch of a button and helps the automatic wind deflector located behind the rear headrests to reduce turbulence even more efficiently. AIRSCARF® envelops the neck and shoulders of the front passengers with even warmer air than in previous models – even in unfavourable wind conditions.

The standard-fit fabric acoustic top also contributes to the car’s full suitability for year-round driving. It is available in black, red or grey. The top’s multi-layer design with extensive insulation ensures excellent protection from the elements in all seasons. It also reduces wind and driving noise. The top opens and closes within 20 seconds while driving up to a speed of 60 km/h. For the first time, the top is fully electric, making it even quieter than before. The standard-fit all-electric roller-divider separates the folded top from the rest of the luggage compartment.

With its volume of 385 litres (295 litres with the roof open), the luggage compartment offers excellent suitability for everyday use. If needed, it can be expanded by folding down the rear seats. The 60:40 split-folding rear seats fold down conveniently from the luggage compartment. HANDS FREE ACCESS affords no-touch, fully automatic access to the luggage compartment. Standard equipment also includes KEYLESS GO. This feature allows the car doors to be locked and unlocked by touching the door handle.

Targeted reinforcement of the body-in-white lends the four-seater a high level of structural safety even without a stabilising fixed roof. There is also a rollover protection system, which, in combination with the rigid A-pillars, creates a survival space in the event of an imminent rollover. In addition, the restraint systems offer the best possible protection in the event of an accident. Specific examples include the eleven airbags that are part of the extensive standard equipment. New additions include the centre airbag between the front-row occupants and head airbags for rear-seat passengers. Another standard feature is the PRE SAFE® system, which prepares both the occupants and the car itself for an imminent collision.

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