The Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class, the model largely credited with kicking off the coupe-like sedan trend with the arrival of the first generation in 2004, will soon be discontinued.
First reported on Tuesday by The Drive, and since confirmed by Mercedes, the CLS-Class will bow out of production on Aug. 31, 2023.
The date is when Mercedes will start production of the redesigned 2024 E-Class, the model the CLS-Class is traditionally linked with.
Sales of the CLS-Class have been on the decline for several years. Mercedes groups CLS-Class sales together with the E-Class, and in 2022 the two nameplates only managed 18,818 sales in the U.S., down 10% on the previous year. The GLE-Class and GLE-Class Coupe SUVs together managed 63,050 sales over the same period.
Sedan sales in general have been on a decline as buyers continue to flock to SUVs. It hasn’t helped that Mercedes in recent years has launched a number of alternative coupe-like sedans, crowding out what was already a niche segment. Additional coupe-like sedans offered by the automaker include the compact CLA-Class, high-performance AMG GT 4-Door Coupe, and EQE and EQS electric duo.
Reports of the CLS-Class’ demise first surfaced as early as 2020. According to those same reports, the AMG GT 4-Door Coupe will also be discontinued after the current model reaches the end of its life cycle, though AMG is tipped to launch an electric successor around the middle of the decade, previewed in 2022 by the Vision AMG concept car.
In a statement, Mercedes said a “new generation of coupes and convertibles” are coming to help fill the void. The automaker is likely referring to a new CLE-Class coupe and CLE-Class Cabriolet that are set to replace the former two-door versions of both the C-Class and E-Class later this year.