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The technology behind the new Mercedes-Benz CL-Class - Integral seats with massage function and ventilation: New luxury coupé offers wellness on wheels
With individually adaptable backrest and cushion contours, active ventilation and an innovative massage function, the integral seats of the new Mercedes-Benz CL-Class increase the personal well-being of the occupants on long journeys. The seal of approval by an independent jury representing the AGR - “ Aktion Gesunder Rücken” (healthy back campaign) - a German organisation which tests products for spine-friendly design, confirms the high quality of the newly developed multi-contour seat and its health-promoting effects.
The front seats of the CL-Class are designed as integral seats. All the components of the seat belt system are mounted directly on the seat: the inertia-reel mechanism with belt force limiter, automatic comfort-fit, belt buckle and the upper reversing point for the belt. This ensures that the seat belt is in the best possible position for any seat adjustment, and can therefore carry out its protective function to best effect. Accordingly the seats are important components of the occupant protection system. Thanks to robust seat rails of extruded aluminium sections and their sophisticated, weight-optimised welded construction using high-strength steel, they are able to withstand even the most extreme forces during a crash.
Even the newly developed standard 12-way seat provides the driver and front passenger with first-class comfort. The fore-and-aft position, backrest and cushion angle, seat height, head restraint and seat cushion depth are electrically adjustable - independently and variably, so that each occupant is able to choose the best individual seating position. This also applies to comfort and support for the lower back, as pneumatic lumbar supports are also standard equipment for the front seats. These enable the driver and front passenger to adapt the backrest contours to their own anatomy, relieving stress on the back muscles.
The technical construction of the newly developed seats for the CL-Class meets the traditionally high standards of quality maintained by the Mercedes-Benz brand in this area. This means sinus springs with a polyurethane foam pad in the seat cushion and Pullmaflex suspension padding with a breathable natural fibre/rubberised mat in the backrest.
A pleasant airflow: Active seat ventilation even more effective
The seat development specialists at Mercedes are concerned not only with traditional comfort characteristics such as the springs and padding, but also with the all-round well-being of the car’s occupants. The materials and structure of a Mercedes seat must ensure comfort in all weather and temperature conditions. This is ensured by breathable materials and the high-quality leather upholstery used for CL-Class seats.
Even more climatic comfort is provided by actively ventilated luxury seats, which are standard equipment in the CL 600. Miniature fans in the seat cushion and backrest take in cool air at floor level and evenly distribute this via an air-permeable fabric under the surface of the seat. This gentle airflow ensures that the occupants remain cool and comfortable even at high outside temperatures.
Specialists have now improved this technology even further. The heated, actively ventilated luxury seats in the new CL-Class are equipped with even more efficient fan controllers, which regulate likewise improved mini-fans in the seat cushion (4) and backrest (2) of each front seat. The upholstery materials have also been modified to improve the efficiency of the heating and ventilation functions even further. The heating elements are now located directly beneath the seat covers.
Made-to-measure comfort: New multi-contour seat with nine air chambers
Like active seat ventilation, the multi-contour seat is a very successful Mercedes invention which greatly contributes to the high level of long-distance comfort in cars bearing the Mercedes star. Multi-contour means that the occupants are able to adapt the contours of the seat to their individual anatomical or comfort requirements. This is made possible by air chambers within the seat padding.
A new-generation multi-contour seat is used in the CL-Class. This has even more functions - and therefore provides even greater comfort. While the previous multi-contour seat featured seven air chambers, the driver and front passenger are now able to adjust four zones in their seats with the help of nine air chambers. These are:
- the two side bolsters of the seat cushion;
- the lumbar support, which is also height-adjustable;
- the two side bolsters of the seat backrest;
- the shoulder support.
Thanks to new piezo valves, the pneumatics of the multi-contour system operate even more quietly and precisely than before. Moreover, the valves are now in a decentralised configuration and therefore respond more rapidly, which means that for the first time, the multi-contour seats can also be integrated into the PRE-SAFE® preventative occupant protection system: if PRE-SAFE® detects the risk of a collision, it inflates the air chambers in the side bolsters of the seat cushions and backrests as a precaution. These cushions envelop the occupants and support them, increasing the distance to the interior door panels during an accident. This enables the sidebag to provide even more protection.
The driver and front passenger seats with multi-contour function have been awarded the AGR seal of approval.
Rapid piezo valves for lateral support tailored to the driving situation
Customers can enjoy the ultimate in seat comfort by specifying the dynamic variant of the multi-contour seat for the new CL-Class. The new, decentralised piezo valves for the air chambers noticeably improve the dynamic function of the multi-contour seat by responding more rapidly to steering movements. The pressure and volume of the side air chambers in the seat backrests are adjusted in a matter of seconds according to the steering angle, lateral acceleration and speed of the car in order to offer the driver and front passenger even better lateral support. This happens according to the driving situation. The system inflates the air chambers on the right side of the backrest more strongly when negotiating a left-hand bend, for example, while inflating the air chambers on the left when a right-hand bend is taken. This dynamic, two-stage multi-contour function relieves stress on the muscles and thus promotes physical well-being.
Separate air chambers for a relaxing back massage
The massage function for the dynamic multi-contour seat is also a completely new development by Mercedes specialists. It no longer makes use of the air chambers with which the seat contours are adjusted, but rather a separate package of air chambers integrated into the seat padding. This means that the individual comfort settings are retained.
A micro-computer controls the seven separate massage air chambers, inflating and emptying the air chambers according to a fixed programme, which passengers in the new CL-Class perceive as a pleasant, pulsing motion across the entire back. This stimulates the muscles, improves the circulation and helps to prevent early fatigue.
The massage programme lasts for five minutes and can be restarted at any time once the cycle has finished. The intensity and speed of the massage function can also be individually adjusted in four settings, from “slow and gentle” to “ fast and powerful”.