2005 Mercedes-Benz CL65 AMG Long-Term Road Test

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2005 Mercedes-Benz CL65 AMG: It Won't Start, Part 1

January 30, 2014

2005 Mercedes-Benz CL65 AMG

This is our 2005 Mercedes-Benz CL65, parked on pit row at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. We had just completed a series of routine performance tests. The same tests we do on all long-term cars. And our CL65 did great.

We parked the car and came back about 20 minutes later. When we turned the key this time the CL65 wouldn't quite start. Instead, it shuddered violently. We shut it down. Then this happened (take the jump for video)...

http://youtu.be/aM3BVNpsNiU

The Mercedes would only crank. We gave it 5, 10, 15 minutes and the results were the same. Stranded again.

We called roadside assistance and arranged to have the car towed to the dealer. The operator politely asked, "Where is the vehicle located?" We laughed and told him it was at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana. He continued, "In a parking structure, or parking lot?" We explained that the car was on pit row. "I haven't had one of these before," he laughed. Thirty minutes later the truck arrived and our car was en route to service.

Stay tuned.

Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Manager @ 60,035 miles

Comments

  • stovt001_ stovt001_ Posts:

    I've seen enough catastrophic failures at track days at ACS that I'm surprised there's a tow truck driver in the area who HASN'T towed a car out of there.

  • ahightower ahightower Posts:

    "I haven't had one of these before," he laughed.... because no poser in a CL65 has actually ever been on a racetrack before. Seriously, this thing is going to make the Ferrari experience seem downright Toyota-like.

  • ikagan ikagan Posts:

    Yup, you will soon know all the MB tow truck drivers by name. Ask me how I know...

  • mercedesfan mercedesfan Posts:

    You sure it's not just a dead battery? That massive 6.0-liter, V12 takes an enormous amount of energy to fire up. Of course, that wouldn't explain the violent shaking. Perhaps an ignition coil failed? That is a common weak point on V12 MBs.

  • duck87 duck87 Posts:

    That's a really weird noise...

  • skibird skibird Posts:

    Based on my family's Mercedes experience (albeit V6s and V8s), the answer is always crank position sensor.

  • tjk291 tjk291 Posts:

    LOL, German JUNK.

  • evodad evodad Posts:

    i can't wait for the end of the year tally on repair costs for this thing.

  • jasond52 jasond52 Posts:

    Oh, the joy of owning a V12 Benz...

  • Have them check the oil consumption while they are at it.

  • hoseclamp hoseclamp Posts:

    you guys need to call kent: https://www.youtube.com/user/Mercedessource/featured

  • reminder reminder Posts:

    Just pull the dipstick and take a look at the oil level. Oh yeah, it doesn't have a dipstick. Check the dwell on the points. Oh yeah, it doesn't have points. Seriously now, she sounds like an ignition situation. You hear that sucking sound? That's your cash flying out of your pocket.

  • Gentlemen. I own a 2005 CL65 exactly like the one you have. Same color, same condition. Mine thankfully is covered under a bumper to bumper warranty. I have been experiencing the same hard start, rough idle situation after the engine gets warm. It's been to the dealer, Rocklin Mercedes a few times in an attempt to repair. In fact, in just one year they have completed over $15,000 worth of repairs to the car and are getting to know it well. The joke is that with a set ofiston rings, I'll have a new engine. I would be most interested in knowing what causes this rough idle. The dealer found that my fuel pump and controller are bad, I'm not convinced this is the remedy. I'll be anxious to see your fix. As for oil burn, most of the 65 series cars consume a quart every 500 to 700 miles. It's the nature of the beast. I have two, the before mentioned 05 Cl65 and a 2012 S65. Call me a glutton for punishment, thank god for warranties. I must say in all fairness, when my 5000 pound coupe or sedan blows another more recognized exotic off the line, I can't quite put a price on the smile I enjoy. Apply for higher credit limits on the Visa card now, you'll certainly need it. Kurt Leardriver1@netzero.com

  • bankerdanny bankerdanny Posts:

    "Call me a glutton for punishment..." Kurt, you are a glutton for punishment. Perhaps it's time to try a Bentley.

  • kevm14 kevm14 Posts:

    That strange sound reminds me of what no compression sounds like. But since this is a V12, it normally cranks very smoothly so what sounds like compression strokes (slowing down the starter) may instead be sparse ignition events. Hope it's ignition not anything with the bottom end (or head gasket). I dunno, I'm really down on the whole German philosophy of adding more and more complexity and getting it all to work, as if that's the accomplishment. Actual engineering achievement is making more with less.

  • mercedesfan mercedesfan Posts:

    @bankerdanny, Oh God that would be like moving from South Sudan to Syria hoping for a more peaceful living situation. I have some business associates who have owned multiple Bentleys and Rollers and they are no better, and in fact probably worse. Stunning

  • mercedesfan mercedesfan Posts:

    @bankerdanny, Oh God that would be like moving from South Sudan to Syria hoping for a more peaceful living situation. I have some business associates who have owned multiple Bentleys and Rollers and they are no better, and in fact probably worse. Stunning

  • se_riously se_riously Posts:

    "The more they overthink the plumbing, the easier it is to stop up the drain." - Montgomery Scott (Star Trek 3).

  • se_riously se_riously Posts:

    "The more they overthink the plumbing, the easier it is to stop up the drain." - Montgomery Scott (Star Trek 3).

  • blueprint1 blueprint1 Posts:

    I feel an upcoming DIY project: small block Chevy swap!

  • blueprint1 blueprint1 Posts:

    I feel an upcoming DIY project: small block Chevy swap!

  • aquineas_ aquineas_ Posts:

    Ruh-roh. It didn't sound that bad in the video, but that shuddering part beforehand sounds ominous.

  • aquineas_ aquineas_ Posts:

    Ruh-roh. It didn't sound that bad in the video, but that shuddering part beforehand sounds ominous.

  • Did Edmunds have trouble like this with their 2002 Corvette? Don't think so and they drove it like they stole it. This a really horrible car and it is not a high mileage vehicle. This is when fanboys state that the CL65 AMG is a rare exotic and these kind of problems are expected. Bull*&$+. The 2002 Corvette ZO6 was also a rare car, only a few made a year, and the engine is hand built.

  • Did Edmunds have trouble like this with their 2002 Corvette? Don't think so and they drove it like they stole it. This a really horrible car and it is not a high mileage vehicle. This is when fanboys state that the CL65 AMG is a rare exotic and these kind of problems are expected. Bull*&$+. The 2002 Corvette ZO6 was also a rare car, only a few made a year, and the engine is hand built.

  • aquineas_ aquineas_ Posts:

    lol blueprint1 I had the exact same thought!

  • aquineas_ aquineas_ Posts:

    lol blueprint1 I had the exact same thought!

  • kevm14 kevm14 Posts:

    allthingshonda, the LS6 (C5 Z06) was not hand built like the LS7 (C6 Z06) and LS9 (C6 ZR1). But let's not discount the LS6. It made over 400hp with a single cam, no variable ANYTHING, in a package weighing less than 400 lbs (without manifolds or clutch) and that can fit inside engine bays designed only for 4 cylinder engines, that can get nearly 30mpg in a Corvette (and 26mpg in my CTS-V). As far as replacing the 6.0L bi-turbo V12 in this AMG, I'd have to assume the LS9 would do a marvelous job of pushing the big Benz around. A little more hp, but less torque. One cam, no variable anything. Just good engineering. Without a doubt more reliable and easier to work on.

  • kevm14 kevm14 Posts:

    allthingshonda, the LS6 (C5 Z06) was not hand built like the LS7 (C6 Z06) and LS9 (C6 ZR1). But let's not discount the LS6. It made over 400hp with a single cam, no variable ANYTHING, in a package weighing less than 400 lbs (without manifolds or clutch) and that can fit inside engine bays designed only for 4 cylinder engines, that can get nearly 30mpg in a Corvette (and 26mpg in my CTS-V). As far as replacing the 6.0L bi-turbo V12 in this AMG, I'd have to assume the LS9 would do a marvelous job of pushing the big Benz around. A little more hp, but less torque. One cam, no variable anything. Just good engineering. Without a doubt more reliable and easier to work on.

  • OK, now the thought of ever buying another high end used car is starting to scare me...

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