With its new five-door CLS Shooting Brake, Mercedes-Benz has again demonstrated a capacity for innovation by adding the recreational and utility values of an estate car to the CLS Coupé.
Notwithstanding its model designation - a name whose origins can be traced back to the very earliest days of motoring - Mercedes-Benz still regards the CLS Shooting Brake as a 'totally new' concept.
There are four different engine variants to choose from - two diesel and two petrol, including two with 4-Matic all-wheel drive - spanning a range from the entry level CLS 250 up to the CLS 500 V8, with 7G-Tronic transmission and ECO stop/start common to all.
Of these engines, the one most likely to catch the imagination of Irish motorists will be the 4-cylinder, 204bhp CLS 250 CDI with its economical 5.3 litres/100km fuel consumption, top speed of 235km/h, CO2 emissions of 139g/km and 0-100km/h acceleration time of 7.8 seconds.
Due in Ireland in time for 2013 registrations, the CLS Shooting Brake is 1.6cm longer than the CLS Coupé and identical in width and height.
Its unique roofline means that rear-seat passengers have 4.7 cm more headroom.
A four-plus-one five-seater, it has individual rear seats on the outside and a third seat in the centre.
Rear seats can be folded forward to increase load volume from 590 to 1,550 litres.