luxurious ride yet sharp handling, smooth and powerful yet efficient engine, efficient all wheel drive, craftmanship and styling;
Incredible engineering achievement that grows on you with every mile and challenging road traveled; able to deliver traditionally mutually exclusive qualities:
adaptive air suspension gives you flat cornering and sports car like reflexes with an S-class like ride quality; biturbo V8 engine pulls, revs, and hangs at the throttle like a sports car engine yet delivers routinely real world 28 mpg on spirited long distance highway/country road driving in a 4wheel drive 4200 pound car;
the most impressive Mercedes in a generation !
interior and exterior design
solidity, heft and agility
full LED lights and adaptive high beam make night drives a breeze;
Cooled/heated active multicontour seats
a little head bending required to get into rear seat for 6 footer, once there no problem; small price to pay for beauty;
The safety features of a car are an important consideration for me.
I decided to look into BMW, Audi and Mercedes.
Currently, BMW does not offer a car that competes in this class (perhaps the 5 series Gran Turismo?)
I was able to test drive the M-B CLS 4matic and the Audi A7.
Audi did seem to have a sportier feel to it.
Both cars have a wide array of technology and safety features, but M-B believes in taking a more pro-active role in terms of safety (Active Blind Spot Assist/Active Lane-Keeping Assist). The sensual sheet metal, safety features, exclusivity, and twin turbo 4.6L V8 with 4matic sold me on the M-B.
I had no idea that a car could be so interactive, functional, & beautiful.
-Distronic Plus(Radar cruise control-the ability to stop itself and continue when the traffic is clear)
-Driver's Assistance Pkg (Active Blind Spot Assist & Active Lane Keeping Assist)
-4 matic (AWD)
-Engine, powerful yet efficient.
I get close to 30mpg on the highway
-Adjustable Air Suspension
-Voice activated everything (radio, phone, navigation)
-Low production (you don't see them everywhere)
-Parktronic (Active parking assist)
-Automatic self adusting headlights (high beam to low beam when a car approaches)
-The feeling you get when people stop & stare and give the thumbs up!
I have owned Jags,Cadillacs and MB's. The last three 2005 Clk 550' 2008 Cls 500'20011Cls 550 and now 2012 Cls 550 after hitting a deer. This is the best car I have ever driven.Power is incredible and it draws people wherever we go. I may never change. Averaged 22.7 on a trip to NYC.
Power,Comfort and Drivability. distronic was great.
needs more instructions on systems and
full comfort on passengers seats.
This car has got it all: style, comfort, sportiness, oppulence, neck-snapping performance, build quality that reminds me of 1990's Mercedes, and the safety and security of AWD.
I get countless compliments and stares while driving the car and the interior styling is quite impressive as well. Even with the airmatic suspension set in sport mode and the transmission engaged in its sport setting, everything is just buttery smooth. It's truely an outstanding car.
The new Twin Turbo V8 sounds great, has endless waves of torque, and is even relatively fuel efficient. (I average 22 mpg in mixed driving.) The fact that this new CLS550 accelerates as quickly as last year's CLS63 AMG is pretty impressive too.
I also love the AIRMATIC adjustable air suspension. No matter what mode you're in, the ride is always so stable, smooth, secure.
The COMMAND infotainment system is vastly improved over the previous units used in our CLK550 and E320. There are so many different menus and features, but they're all easy to find. The 5-day weather reports and traffic updates are awesome.
One more thing I adore is the active multicontour driver seat.
Im still not really in love with the idea of the shift lever being located on the steering wheel column. Hopefully it'll grow on me.
Also, the reason I had marked value as only a 3/5 was because as oustanding as this car is, it is also priced a bit extravagently. You're basically paying for a $15k more expensive E-class with slightely more style and a lot less practicality.
If you absolutely fall in love with the car and cant stand the popularity and lack of exclusivity of an E-class (like me), then you probably wont mind the price too much.