The battle as old as time is being led, for the moment, by the Mercedes side of Germany.
Yes, the new Mercedes CLS 4-door looks meaningful. And it's not the first time: Over the last 5-7 years or so they seem to have mastered the art of creating cars that old men can enjoy, but young ones too, including Mom, cousin Niresh, bra Shakes, Mnr. Vd.Westhuizen and every breed of South African across the scope of our beautiful and car-mad country.
BMW, as much we love it, does not quite hit the nail on the head in quite the same way in this segment, as its 4-series is no doubt awesome, but for a smaller scope of people. That means it might look good in the hands of a racing mad 30-something, but not as cool when being driven Oupa Jan. That's where the Mercedes excels, seemingly in every crevice of society from the former mad man to the latter old-timer.
The CLS' profile is flawless and you can easily see an AMG being born from this, which will certainly be a sight to behold when it arrives and a machine scary enough to fear. Bear in mind that the top-end diesel version already hits 100km/h in 5 seconds, so I'll let you imagine the possibilities when AMG get their hands on this.
Unveiled at the LA motor show, which truthfully hasn't been as innovative and exciting as Frankfurt and Tokyo this year, the Mercedes was welcomed with appreciative nods by the warmth of California, and by men and women who feel similarly the world over about the current state of Mercedes and its offering.
Mercedes have got the right mix at the mo and are edging the Bavarians in the c-segment class. Of course, this is only one segment and overall they seem pretty much nose-for-nose as always - but, as always, what you will probably will only be a manifestation of your childhood bias anyway, and that there is the car-thinking sort of romance that we love most at GT - and is no doubt why you clicked on this article anyway, for justification for your Mercedes-loving opinion, or to rant in the comment section as a BMW lover scorned.
Gotta love South Africa!
The car brand that should be most concerned though is actually Audi, whose unchanged face has been left further behind, and whose relevance is growing less every year in the face of prettier German rivals, and even prettier new comers from the Mediterranean and the far east. Passop Audi!
As for Mercedes though, they really are looking good and that can only mean one thing. Expect an even stronger 4-series in future and a better motoring world for us all.