In the wide, grand, crazy scheme of the Mercedes CLK world, this is just about the widest, grandest and craziest: It’s a Mercedes CLK DTM, and it’s currently listed on Autotrader with a private seller in Orange County, California, for $425,000.
Yes, that’s right: $425,000 for a 12-year-old Mercedes CLK. But this isn’t just any Mercedes CLK.
Here’s the situation with the CLK DTM: While the normal CLK lineup included the CLK, and the CLK AMG, and then the CLK63 AMG Black Series, the DTM took things a step further, as it was built to amalgamate the car for racing in the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters (DTM) race series. In fact, the production CLK DTM looks a lot like the actual race car, with a substantially widened body, a huge rear wing and massive weight savings that involved the removal of the rear seat, among other things.
The CLK DTM also got a massive upgrade under the hood. While the most powerful "regular" CLK was the 507-horsepower Black Series, the DTM model used a 5.4-liter supercharged V8 with 582 hp and a massive 590 lb-ft of torque, resulting in a 3.8-second 0-to-60 time and a top speed of 200 miles per hour. It was, and still is, a very serious car, second only in CLK craziness to the wild CLK GTR that Mercedes made in extremely limited quantities.
Which isn’t to say the CLK DTM was exactly mass-produced. In fact, Mercedes built just 180 examples of the DTM: 100 coupes (like this one) and 80 cabriolets, many of which went to famous racing drivers like Juan Pablo Montoya and Jenson Button. No CLK DTM was ever originally sold by Mercedes in the United States, though the car is legal to import under the "Show or Display" rule, which allows certain special cars into the country with limited annual mileage. This particular example is a "Show or Display" car — and the listing says it was originally sold in Europe, while the next owner was a collector in South Korea.
Yes, $425,000 for a CLK may seem steep. But you could also look at it as $425,000 for one of the rarest, fastest, most exciting Mercedes models built in the last 15 years. Find a used Mercedes-Benz CLK Class for sale
Doug DeMuro is an automotive journalist who has written for many online and magazine publications. He once owned a Nissan Cube and a Ferrari 360 Modena. At the same time.