Our test car was fitted with the optional (£1990) Cockpit Management and Navigation system which comprises radio, single CD/DVD drive in the central console and a DVD drive for the Satellite Navigation in the boot.
Our test car was fitted with the optional (£1990) Cockpit Management and Navigation system which comprises radio, single CD/DVD drive in the central console and a DVD drive for the Satellite Navigation in the boot. The 6-disc CD autochanger was a £360 option fitted into the central console. This setup allows you to watch DVD’s whilst stationery via the 6.5” colour TFT screen which supports the 16:9 screen format. If you wish for £735 you can upgrade the system with a television tuner - which seems rather expensive.
Overall we weren’t that inspired by the audio system or at least not on a £52,000 car as in our opinion it sounded a little bit too ordinary - should you feel the same there are upgrades available, including a £510 Harmon/Kardon Logic 7 surround sound system, which sounded great in the SLK 350 we tested.
The Satellite Navigation system isn’t the best in the world either - Jaguar has a much better touch screen system and you cannot enter post codes when entering addresses which is the quick and preferred method these days.
How It Looks - Exterior
The exterior is very much a case of either hate it or love it - we loved it but we did receive some comments that it was ugly - perhaps that was just jealousy. There is no doubt that the CLS has a commanding road presence and looks like it would be far more expensive than the entry-level £43,000 price tag.
The unique proportions of the body characterise the exciting appearance: dynamically formed front and rear overhangs elegantly extend the bodywork, contrasting with the curved and low-profile roofline.
The front-end design of the CLS-Class Coupe appears both new and familiar: new because the headlamps create a different and interesting Mercedes face and familiar because of the brand’s typical slatted radiator grille with a centrally positioned three-pointed star. These features and the pronounced wedge-shape of the bonnet and front bumper emphasise the sporting prowess of the car whilst remaining elegant.
How It Looks - Interior
Sitting in the CLS it feels uncannily like being in an E-Class and that includes the cheap looking and feeling surrounds to the air conditioning controls and cockpit command unit. The cockpit command unit is very similar to the one fitted to the smart forfour range. We did not care too much for the silk matt burr walnut wood trim; in our opinion it did not work, especially as our test car was equipped with a sunset red leather interior.
Otherwise the cabin is a comfortable place to be, everything is functionally Germanic, which is a good thing, although we did find the controls for the optional (£880) multi-contour dynamic seats a little bit confusing.
Mercedes Benz CLS-Class Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Mercedes Benz CLS 500|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||6.1 Seconds|
|Top Speed||155 mph|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||34 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||TBA|
|Warranty||3-Year / Unlimited Mileage|
|Price (when tested on the 10/05/06)||£52,145 OTR|