- Seats four passengers (no rear bench)
- All-wheel drive is now standard on CLS63 AMG models
- All CLS63 AMGs now make 550-hp and 531 pounds-feet of torque
With one of the most unique shapes around, the 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class takes coupe styling and meshes it with four-door practicality. Mercedes offers the CLS-Class in two varieties: the CLS550 and the high-performance CLS63 AMG. Competitors include the Audi A7 and the BMW 6-Series.
Look at the CLS-Class in profile and it looks like nothing else on the road. A long, sloping hood feeds into a swept back cabin and a very curvy rear end with a short deck lid. Mercedes’ goal was to make something that looks sleek and fast and although the CLS-Class is not a small car, it hides its girth well. Up front, the dominant feature is a large version of Mercedes’ aggressive corporate grille, flanked by large headlight clusters that contain shapely LED daytime running lights. A power sunroof is standard, while full-LED adaptive headlights and a rear deck-lid spoiler are optional.
Inside, the CLS-Class seats a coupe-like four passengers eschewing a rear bench for rear seats that are separated by a center console with cup holders and storage. As would be expected of a luxury car of this caliber (and not to mention price), materials are upscale with standard leather upholstery and real wood trim pieces. Most features are standard, including a Harmon Kardon stereo, hard-drive based navigation, and the latest iteration of Mercedes’ Comand infotainment system. Heated and ventilated front seats, massaging seats, and a power rear sunshade are optional.
Under the hood, the CLS550 features a 402-hp, twin-turbo 4.6-liter V-8 making 443 pounds feet of torque. For 2014, the CLS63 AMG gets a myriad of mechanical changes/upgrades. This year’s model features a 550-hp, twin-turbo 5.5-liter V-8 under the hood (last year only models with optional performance package made this much power) that makes 531 pounds-feet of torque. Also for 2014, 4Matic all-wheel drive is now standard on CLS63 AMG models (optional on the CLS550). Both cars utilize a seven-speed automatic transmission with paddle-shifters.
Mercedes-Benz has always put a premium on safety, and the CLS-Class’ standard safety features is further evidence of that. Attention assist, mbrace2 in-car communication system, side-impact airbags for the front seats, front knee airbags, side curtain airbags, antilock brakes, an electronic stability system and active front head restraints all come standard. Optional safety features include side-impact airbags for the rear seats, blind spot warning system, lane departure warning, collision warning and mitigation system, night vision, backup camera, and front and rear parking sensors.