Here we have the new CLS Grand Edition special-edition model from Mercedes-Benz. I guess the boys from Stuttgart are doing special editions now (oh boy).
Essentially the CLS Grand Edition is a matte exterior paint job and lots and lots of leather on the inside. Not really stretching there, are they, and yet another reason why I’m not that big a fan of “special editions”.
Don’t get me wrong, the CLS is a nice car, and I like what Mercedes is trying to do with the four door coupe (although that’s more than a bit of an oxymoron, no?). They (and others) are slowly whittling away at the three-box look that most sedans are cosigned to … but this whole special edition thing? Scary. It’s the top of a slippery slope. Mercedes is setting foot at the start of a road that leads to where GM (among others) ended up circa 1982.
Remember when GM seemed to have a “special edition” of almost every car they made?
“What makes this special edition of the Chevette so special?”
“The stickers on the side that say ‘Special Edition'”.
Now no, I’m not saying that Mercedes is going to end up at that ignominious fate, but this is a bad portent. First AMG turns from an out-source tuner into a part of the company into something more than just performance … then there’s this whole “Black Series” (ooo, scary!) business … now “Special editions”.
We’re watching guys, don’t go and dilute yourselves.