Automakers attempting to mix the sexiness of a coupe and the utility of an SUV don't appear to be going away. BMW arguably created the niche with its X6, and Acura latched onto it with the awkward ZDX. Mercedes-Benz might be taking the best stab at the form yet with the Concept Coupe SUV, which debuts at the 2014 Beijing Motor Show.

At over 16 feet long, over six feet wide, and riding on 22-inch wheels, the Concept Coupe SUV is an imposing vehicle. The front of the concept is dominated by tons of chrome mesh, and the three-pointed Mercedes star stands proudly in the middle. The hood features some very pronounced creases to lead the eye to that big front end.

Compared to the eye-arresting expanse of chrome at the front, the rest of the styling is surprisingly soft. The profile shows a sweeping curve starting at the A-pillar and ending just above the taillights. It's a sporty look but still slightly weird on a vehicle with SUV proportions. From the rear-three quarters perspective, the design appears to be nothing but curving lines and glass. The back uses simple, horizontal lines with a strip of lights wrapping around, and flat oval exhaust pipes to complete the elegant look below. There are no photos of the interior so that remains a secret for now.

The concept is propelled by a twin-turbocharged, 3.0-liter V6 with 333 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque. It routes through Mercedes' 9G-Tronic nine-speed automatic gearbox to send power to all four wheels.

Recently, Mercedes is treating concepts as thinly veiled previews of future vehicles, and it seems the Concept Coupe SUV is no different. In fact, the company goes so far in the release to say: "With this concept car, Mercedes-Benz is announcing the possible expansion of the previously uniform SUV off-roader family." It's not hard to read between the lines. Scroll down to get all the details.
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Mercedes-Benz Concept Coupé SUV

Sporty Coupé at the highest level

Stuttgart / New York. With the Concept Coupé SUV, Mercedes-Benz is raising the standard to a new, higher level in literally multiple respects. This extremely sporty study impresses as a typical representative of the long-standing coupé tradition at Mercedes-Benz, with a flowing side line, stretched greenhouse and striking radiator grille with central chrome louvre. At the same time the Concept Coupé SUV stands out with its muscular wings, large wheel arches, imposing 22-inch wheels, high beltline and generous ground clearance. Its dynamic handling on the road is also on a superior level. Not only thanks to air suspension, but also to the networking of the powertrain, suspension and interior that it realises. The variable dynamic control system "Dynamic Select Control" provides four fundamentally different transmission modes and an individually programmable setup.

"Sensual as a coupé - visionary as an SUV," is the succinct choice of words used by Gorden Wagener, Head of Design at Mercedes-Benz, to describe the physiognomy of the Concept Coupé SUV. The four-door, all-wheel drive Coupé has a length of almost five metres, and an imposing width of a good two metres thanks to its broad shoulders and flared wheel arches. At the same time it has a modest height of around 1.75 metres, exhibiting the flat, extended roofline that is typical of a sports coupé. "The Concept Coupé SUV stands out thanks to its extreme proportions and in doing so interprets our hallmark Mercedes coupé design idiom perfectly. With its superior sportiness it conveys a sense of modern luxury and aesthetic aspirations of sensual clarity", continues Gorden Wagener. Like the recessed door handles, frameless side windows blend perfectly into the vehicle flanks to accentuate the coupé-like character even further. In line with a tradition and like all recent study vehicles, the Concept Coupé SUV is painted in the "Alu Beam" paint finish, which is also reminiscent of the technically ground-breaking Silver Arrows of the 1930s and 1950s.

The upright sports grille with single louvre, framed by the three-dimensionally designed modern, all-LED Multibeam headlamps, is the major feature of the front end with its short, stylish overhang. Soft cubes dominate the grille insert, and the forward-sloping bonnet with its typical Mercedes power domes underlines the membership of the Concept Coupé SUV in the line-up of particularly sporty Mercedes-Benz models. A discreet reference to the SUV genes of this study is provided by the harmoniously integrated, illuminated side sills, which are reminiscent of the running boards found on classic SUVs or off-roaders. Indicators have always pointed the way in the best sense of the word , however in the Concept Coupé SUV they take on a new form. The direction indicators operate with a moving digital light band whose lighting elements light up sequentially from inside to outside, indicating the change in direction in two ways.

Elegant rear end: in the style of the S-Class Coupé

The coupé-like nature of the Concept Coupé SUV is also emphasised by the design of the rear end with its obvious elements of the design line first presented with the S-Class Coupé, which will be followed by all coupé models from Mercedes-Benz in future. The styling characteristics of this include the slim band of rear lights with their ruby-like, three-dimensional look and the registration plate now incorporated into the rear bumper. Another feature that has for generations distinguished the large coupé models from Mercedes-Benz is the typical shape of the rear window which is rounded off at the top. A discreet SUV reference is made by the simulated underguard into which the tailpipes of the dual-flow exhaust system are integrated. Polished aluminium predominates here, as on the integral door handles, the side sills, the front air intakes and the edging of the greenhouse.

Wide, flush-fitted 22-inch wheels with tyres in size 305/45 R 22 make the vehicle sit squarely on the road, and leave no doubt about the passion of the Concept Coupé SUV : at very first glance this trailblazing study signals its sporty, dynamic ambitions.

Haute Couture: the Mercedes-Benz coupé range

Developing and creating new model families and vehicle classes has traditionally been one of the strengths of Mercedes-Benz, the inventor of the automobile. This is particularly obvious in the history of its coupés, and most especially in the very recent past. Models such as the four-door Coupés or the Shooting Brakes in the CLS-Class have not only created completely new vehicle classes, but have also had a lasting influence on the model policies of different manufacturers, found numerous imitators and proved to be an outstanding sales success. The same can be said of the CLA-Class, which has been able to transfer the success of the CLS into the compact class and is also extraordinarily popular with customers. With the Concept Coupé SUV, Mercedes-Benz is now taking a similar approach. The study follows this coupé theme within the SUV sector consistently and demonstrates how a four-door, all-wheel drive series production coupé might look.

Concept Coupé SUV - pilot project for new SUV worlds

As a compact all-rounder, the GLA has already translated the suggestion of a coupé-like design idiom into an SUV format, thereby giving indications of a new SUV line from Mercedes-Benz which the Concept Coupé SUV now fully brings to perfection. With this concept car, Mercedes-Benz is announcing the possible expansion of the previously uniform SUV off-roader family:

● The Concept Coupé SUV illustrates the possibilities of a more sporty and dynamic "on-road line"

● The model families of the GLA, GLK, M, GL and G-Class stand for a versatile and superior "off-road line".

This presents customers with definite advantages, as they are able to order a vehicle specifically meeting their needs and wishes.

Technical data

Body type/construction Four-door, four-seater coupé study, frameless side windows
Engine V6, 4 valves per cylinder
Displacement 2996 cc
Rated output 245 kW (333 hp) at 5500 rpm
Rated torque 480 Nm at 1400- 4000 rpm
Mixture formation Electronic direct petrol injection, piezo injectors, 2 turbochargers
Transmission 9G-TRONIC PLUS nine-speed automatic transmission with torque converter lock-up, twin-turbine damper with centrifugal pendulum and DIRECT SELECT gearshift, ECO start/stop
Drive 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive, ASR, ESP®, 4ETS,
Chassis and suspension Double wishbone at the front, multi-link at the rear, special air suspension with selective damping, ACTIVE CURVE SYSTEM active roll stabilisation
Braking system High-performance ceramic composite brake system, electric (parking brake, ABS, BAS PLUS PRE-SAFE© Brake
Steering Electromechanical power steering
Wheelbase 2916 mm
Track, front/rear 1683 / 1768 mm
Wheel/tyre size front/rear 10J x 22 305/45 R 22 / 11J x 22 305/45 R 22
length 4935 mm
Width with/without mirrors 2208 / 2044 mm
Height 1739 mm

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Months Ago
      Tacky and gross. It will sell like hot cakes.
      • 8 Months Ago
      large on the outside, small on the inside. tall, yet not really designed to go off-road. these vehicles are the worst.
        • 8 Months Ago
        I agree..These aren't even useful for showing off since noone likes em.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Please don't make an X6 competitor, you're better than that MB!
      • 8 Months Ago
      Another impractical, bloated FUV.
      • 8 Months Ago
      I feel there is a pick 2 of 3 rule with vehicle design. Looks Sportiness Utility You can only have 2, never 3. I wish this trend of quasimodo vehicles would just end.
      • 8 Months Ago
      "Sleek" is not the word that comes to my mind. Bulky, bulbous and bloated are more like it.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Basically its a Benz version of the X6 and ZDX....
        • 8 Months Ago
        I like it. the ZDX is a bit smaller than the X6. the ZDX is more like X4 size comparably. but your point is understood. CC-SUV, X4, X6, GLA, ZDX....they all lead back to the Infiniti FX (QX70) - which now needs an update & similarly smaller brand sibling (and not the old EX - yuk). What gives, Nissan?
          Brett Red-Dog Evans
          • 7 Months Ago
          Only difference is I actually like the FX/QX70. I do not like any of the other cars on your list.
      • 8 Months Ago
      what utility...
      • 8 Months Ago
      Congratulations to BMW. They have managed to make Mercedes Benz build a non-Mercedes car just like they have with all their awful non-German SUV's and niche cars. Well at least we will know who has no money or bad taste as soon as we see them drive this horrific new car.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Not a coupe.
      • 8 Months Ago
      How embarrassing yet funny. Kids in the ghetto have been doing that to cars for ages. Such a ridiculous time to be on the road.
      • 8 Months Ago
      The Mercedes X6? Wasn't one X6 bad enough they just had to make a Mercedes version? Not only is it horrendously ugly, but it lacks head room in the back.
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