Gorgeous exterior; sharp handling; plush ride; powerful acceleration; world-class luxury; cutting-edge technology
Limited rear-passenger space compared with a conventional sedan
The all-wheel-drive CLS550 4MATIC becomes like its rear-drive counterpart (the CLS550) by receiving a 9-speed automatic transmission. A 5-year subscription to the company's mbrace2 Connect telematics system is also standard throughout the CLS range. This includes web services, roadside connection, MB Apps (nonstreaming), diagnostics, remote updates and remote starting.
The company's name-changing spree means we have a 2016 Mercedes-AMG CLS63 S as the range's hot version.
Despite the CLS400's low starting price and twin-turbo V6 -- and the amped-up attitude of the much-costlier CLS63 AMG -- it's the CLS550's sonorous V8 and effortless thrust that really stand out.
The 2016 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class is available in CLS400, CLS550 and AMG CLS63 S versions. All models have 4-passenger seating with a full-length center console.
The CLS400 ($67,825) includes 18-inch alloy wheels, adaptive LED headlights, a sunroof, auto-dimming mirrors, rain-sensing wipers, wood interior trim, 10-way heated power front seats with driver's-side memory, a power adjustable steering wheel, leather upholstery, multicolor ambient lighting, dual-zone automatic climate control, an automatic garage-door opener, a USB port, Bluetooth, navigation and the COMAND infotainment system with an 8-in central display screen and a knob-based interface.
The CLS550 ($75,025) adds an adaptive air suspension, upgraded navigation, voice control, ventilated front seats, a rearview camera, keyless entry/ignition, a power-closing trunk lid, LED headlights, a power rear sunshade and an enhanced 14-speaker Harman Kardon audio system with a 6-disc DVD/CD changer, satellite radio and an SD-card reader.
Generally speaking, the CLS550's upgrades are available as options in the CLS400.
The AMG CLS63 S ($108,725) includes an AMG body kit, 19-in AMG wheels, performance brakes, a wider front track, an adaptive sport suspension, a limited-slip rear differential, multibeam active LED headlights, a sport exhaust, a rear spoiler, an AMG sport steering wheel with aluminum shift paddles, AMG front sport seats, semi-aniline leather trim and an IWC analog clock.
A Bang & Olufsen audio system with 15 speakers is optional on all models. Other options include active multicontour front seats, front and rear parking sensors, a heated steering wheel, a self-parking system with a surround-view camera, a blind spot monitoring system, lane-departure intervention, adaptive cruise control, rear traffic alert and emergency braking with pedestrian detection. The AMG model can also be specced with carbon-ceramic brake discs.
|Basic||4 Years/50,000 Miles|
|Drivetrain||4 Years/50,000 Miles|
|Corrosion||4 Years/50,000 Miles|
|Roadside Assistance||4 Years/50,000 Miles|
2016 Audi A7 -- The A7's hatchback profile is beautiful. Try the V8-powered S7 and RS 7 as alternatives to the CLS550 and AMG CLS63 S.
2016 Cadillac CTS -- Although it's a traditional sedan, the CTS has plenty of style and a formidable twin-turbocharged V6 version pumping out 420 hp.