Thursday, October 10, 2013

Mostly about the Benz CLS-Class

Reading around on the net today I came across a review of an old favorite, the Mercedes CLS.  First produced in the mid-2000's, this sleek merc ushered in the era of the four-door coupe.  Now we have the VW CC, Audi A7, BMW 6-Series Grand Sport, and probably a couple others I'm forgetting.  Point is, it was a trendsetter.  Here's the review I read today of the 2014 CLS550 by Robert Farago on The Truth About Cars.

I think this car captivates me so much because it's gorgeous, fast enough, has AWD (for our mighty Canadian winters) and, well, it's a Benz, brah!

But to be honest, when I think about it, the car is essentially a tarted up E-Class.  And apparently the standard version drives like one, so it begs the question why would you pay so much more for it?  Well... just look at it.  The design of this car is what really defines it as something special from a car maker that makes lots of special cars.  If money were no object, I would unquestionably buy a CLS550 4Matic as my everyday car.

Now back to compact Pontiac reality... sigh.      

Oh yeah, for those who think 0-60mph in about 5 seconds flat is too slow, there is a sweet AMG version.  Jeremy Clarkson praised the first generation version of it in his Top Gear review, which was good enough for me.  I can't find a decent clip of it right now, so check it out in Episode 1 of Series 6.  Of course the newer AMG's are even more intense would likely cure your need for more speed.   

In the meantime, check out this one that Chicago Cars Direct had for sale a few years ago.  The guy that does these videos seems like he enjoys what he does and (even though he's basically just trying to sell you the car he's showing) he goes over things pretty thoroughly.  He even takes them out for a spin to show you how they drive.  Even if you're not in the market for a new to you car in the Greater Chicago area, their channel on YouTube is full of videos of interesting cars.

In fact my only real criticism of this car is that, unless you opt for the AMG model or the last generation version of the CLS, you have to make due shifting into D with MB's weak column gear selector.  Honestly, the wiper stack in my Buick Lucerne looks more substantial.  I know if there's no manual it really, sincerely does not matter by what means you get your car into drive.  But let's be honest, a console mounted selector is way more legit feeling than any lever, dial or push button.

I know, I could just opt for a first generation CLS, since they all came with console selectors.
But then there isn't an AWD option so I wont have the all-weather confidence I would get in a newer model.  Which means I would probably prefer the E550 4Matic from that era and, well, I don't really want that (not to say I wouldn't take one if I was offered it... the E550 is a very comfortable and quite awesome machine!).

Anyways, I've prattled on far too long about this. 

I'll leave you with a fun random clip:  Maxing out the top speed of a new 911 Turbo S!  Proof that no matter how good you have it in life, someone else out there is having more fun than you. 



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