Norev Mercedes-Benz CLS Shooting Brake (X218)
When is an E-class Estate, not an E-Class Estate? When it’s a CLS Shooting Brake, of course. Now this would be the perfect time to rant about how the CLS sedan is not a coupe, and therefore it’s wagon version is not a shooting brake, but that dead horse has been beaten enough already. I will give Mercedes credit for their commitment to this farce. Even the C218 chassis code of the CLS starts with “C” like the other coupes, and the Brake starts with an “X” as opposed to the “S” of the estate models. This 2nd gen CLS was based on the W212 E-class, and the Brake was in production from 2012 to 2014.
The model comes from Norev, and this particular version is finished in a bronze color that Mercedes calls Indium Grey. It seems colors aren’t safe from being miscategorized either. Up front we are greeted by what is all too common now; sealed grilles. While that is not surprising, they are lacking any sort of depth and realism to their look. The headlights, however, are phenomenal in their detailing with each of the unit’s eleventy billion LEDs individually modeled. Pop the hood and you find a just adequate representation of Mercedes' M276 3.5L V-6. Like the Minichamps S212, the lower body side molding is molded into the body, but the chrome is much better done, and Norev has managed to make it look as though it was a separate piece. I usually have a gripe about Norev’s wheel and tire proportioning, but the CLS is an exception. So instead I’ll complain about the “yes I’m plastic” brake rotors. Moving out back, we have taillights that are as detailed as the headlights, and a lack of badging that makes it obvious you didn’t spring for the V-8. I know, I know, Europeans generally de-badge so as to not be conspicuous in their consumption. But you don't buy this car if you're trying to be conspicuous, do you?
The interior of the model is finished in boring black, but it is well detailed. The various buttons and controls on the dash and doors are all modeled and most are labeled as well. The cargo area is basic wagon, though it would have been nice if Norev chose to model the CLS’s optional wood and aluminum cargo floor. Though this is an old model now, it is still widely available. If you are a wagon lover, I highly recommend it.