The battle at the top of the luxury market has increasingly become about volume (see, for example, Porsche's expansion to new model niches) but it's also about profitability, which means not just selling more cars, but selling more high-end cars. To that end, Mercedes-Benz is said to be considering a number of new model variants, including new AMG-specific models.
The SLS AMG has been a big success for Mercedes, according to Bloomberg
, and that success--at $189,600 a pop--may push AMG to develop more cars on its own. Exactly what is coming isn't known yet, but we can't help but look forward to the results; the SLS AMG is, simply, excellent
More concrete plans exist for the S-Class and CL-Class, however. A long-rumored convertible version
of the CL Coupe could be on the way, according to sources inside the company. With the coupe priced at about $114,000, the convertible would outstrip BMW's 2012 6-Series Convertible, which generally prices around $95,000-$100,000 with common configurations. Performance, equipment, and size are comparable between the two, however.
The next S-Class
is also tipped to get new variants, though with a hybrid and several standard and AMG versions already on offer, it's not clear where Mercedes will take its flagship sedan. Previous reports have suggested as many as four body styles
will be offered, with a coupe (or four-door coupe) version and possibly a four-door convertible (perhaps not unlike the Concept Ocean Drive from 2007
) adding to the standard sedan and long-wheelbase version. The new S-Class versions aren't expected before 2014.
Also on deck are new variants of the upcoming A-Class and B-Class
platform. Bearing a shooting brake-style body and a sportier demeanor, he car could be called the CLC Shooting Brake (bearing Mercedes' controversial interpretation of the name) and arrive sometime in 2014, after the introduction of the standard CLC Coupe, which Automotive News
reports will be based on the A-Class platform to take the fight to the BMW 1-Series. The standard hatchback/microvan version the B-Class is due for debut
at the Frankfurt Auto Show.
We'll keep digging for details on the new models, but in the mean time, you can keep up to date on the latest cars of the present and near future with our Frankfurt Auto Show coverage.
[Bloomberg, Automotive News -- sub. req.]