Gorgeous exterior; sharp handling; plush ride; strong engine; world-class luxury; cutting-edge technology
Pricey; unorthodox styling might not sit well with some; low city fuel economy
The CLS models essentially carryover for 2014, though 4Matic all-wheel drive is now standard on the C63 AMG version. The standard CLS63 AMG 4Matic model enjoys a power boost to 550 horsepower and 531 lb-ft of torque (vs. 518 hp and 516 lb-ft). The CLS63 AMG 4Matic S-Model replaces the AMG Performance Package model, now with 27 more horsepower for a total output of 577 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque.
With more than $34,000 separating the standard CLS550 model from the top-of-the-line CLS63 AMG S-Line, you might think there's an entry-level sedan's worth of value spread across the CLS lineup. And while the different variants certainly have distinctions that will be readily apparent to trained eyes, the base model CLS550 boasts a rich enough list of standard equipment to satisfy most luxury shoppers. The dollar difference, however, will be most appreciated by performance enthusiasts who crave the outlandish acceleration and superb handling offered by the higher-end AMG variants. In this stratosphere of high-end sedans, the AMG models shine with their supercar-like capabilities and aggressive stance, making them compelling halo products for the cosmetically appealing CLS lineup, and desirable enough to convert die-hard sports car fans into sedan drivers.
The CLS550 ($73,025) receives standard items, including a Harman Kardon Logic7 sound system, 14-way power seats, dual-zone climate control and heated front seats. Among the available options is a Premium 1 package ($4,150), which adds LED headlamps, a rearview camera, keyless start and a power rear sunshade. A wheel package ($760) brings 18-inch AMG wheels, while the Wheel Package Plus One ($1,260) delivers 19-in wheels, a 3-spoke sport steering wheel and a manual transmission mode. The 4Matic option ($2,500) brings all-wheel drive.
The CLS63 AMG 4Matic ($99,500) receives significant performance upgrades in the form of a 5.5-liter twin-turbocharged V8 with 550 hp and 531 lb-ft of torque, as well as a sportier suspension and chassis modifications. The Premium 1 package ($3,690) adds active ventilated seats, a rearview camera and keyless start. A premium Bang & Olufsen sound system ($5,400) offers higher-quality audio.
Options available for the CLS550 and CLS63 AMG 4Matic include a driver assistance package ($2,950) that adds adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring and lane keeping assist. Parktronic ($970) and night-view assist ($970) round out the major options.
The CLS63 AMG 4Matic S-Model ($107,425) ups performance with 577 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque from the turbocharged V8, and offers the same options list.
|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|
Cadillac CTS -- The Cadillac boasts plenty of luxury, a sporting character and a compelling value proposition, but the Mercedes is more impressive on virtually all fronts: design, performance, technology, safety and comfort.