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2009 Mercedes-Benz CLS Class Photo

2009 Mercedes-Benz CLS Class - Review

 

Enlarge PhotoThe navigation system, however, leaves quite a lot to be desired. Oh, it’s functional enough, and fully-featured; it’s just impossible to control effectively. Despite occupying about half a square foot of dashboard real-estate, the screen isn’t touch-sensitive, meaning you’re left fumbling about with an awkwardly-placed set of cursor keys on the far side of the unit.

Navigating menus, selecting single letters to spell out a destination, and toiling through endless lists of points-of-interest is made all the more painful and slow thanks to the interface. The voice command system works quite well, but is limited in its scope; eventually the navigation system fell into complete disuse and I used the screen solely for audio functions.

But beyond that black spot, there’s only one other (very minor) nit to pick with the interior features and layout, and that’s the wasting of an entire instrument panel gauge on an analog clock. Luxury cars are keen to adopt this particular vanity, and hardly a one can be found lacking, but the redundancy of the device is made all the more obvious by the ill-functioning COMAND system, where a digital display of the time is proudly displayed on most every screen.

On the Road
Enough of sitting in the car looking at every nook and cranny. Let’s fire this sucker up!

It thrums to life with a pleasing note, but presently settles into a quiet and dignified hum, barely audible and almost free of vibration. Notch it into gear and depress the throttle and something surprising happens - an almost American sensation pervades the car.

Floating down the road, the steering is loose, the ride is couch-like and the engine has a definite V8 burble at cruise. But this is with the computer set to comfort mode and the Airmatic semi-active suspension set to full soft. Kick the computer over into sport mode, and the engine comes to life.

Or at least the accelerator becomes a great deal more responsive, allowing the driver to access its 382hp potential. The prodigious torque (391lb-ft) is available across a broad band, from 2,800rpm to 4,800rpm, and comes in very useful - no matter the computer's setting - when passing on the highway.

The 18in wheels leave what looks like a mile of fender gap. The photos don't do it justice.

 
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Comments (10)
  1. nothing much has changed... and thats good =D
     
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  2. It's a great car, no doubt. The styling is in the eye of the beholder; I don't care for it, or the narrow windows, but that's just an opinion.
    That the screen doesn't respond to touch is silly, it takes my father in his Mercedes 10x as long to enter information as it does in my Ford.
    But, as always, the car is incredibly solid and well engineered, and probably one of the safest vehicles on the road...
     
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  3. yea thats true Gus i know alo of people who hate it, and one guy who bought one for his wife but she literally got sick from driving it because f the slim windows haha. and this car on smaller wheels looks horrible!
    but i love it good to see merc taking a bit more risk on a design rather than the absolute boring designs like the e-class.
    theres alot to hate about this car but alot to absolutely love just depends on who is the buyer.
     
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  4. I own one of the first MY2006 CLS 500 with the sports package and I absolutly love mine. It is not for everyone and thats why I love it! I like Mercedes and I'm attracted to their more unique offerings, I also have a G500 and it's another vehicle thats not for everyone it's not an SUV it's an in your face truck, it turns even more heads than my CLS but I LOVE them both.
     
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  5. See, my wife totally loves the look of this car, it is swoopy and elegant in a way that other cars aren't. I think the Audis and E-class are better looking, but comparatively boring.
     
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  6. i someone offered me 5 amg e-classes id rather take one cls. thats how much i love this car.haha.
     
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  7. Come on dudes, this is a great car,, styleing opinions are best left to those who plunk down thier money. This car is a dream, its powerful yet completly refined. Its a wonderful drive. Forget the low windows,, you want to see low windows ,,ride in a dodge or chrysler. This mercedes is one of the best cars i have ever owned.. we get so many compliments , but the hell with that, we love driving this jewel.. Its easy to be critical of todays autos, but when you evaluate the price point, this car delivers.. plain and simple. Forget the stuffy review, the dude likely drives a Yugo.. thier style is timeless.!
     
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  8. sweet car
     
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  9. It's my first Mercedes. I liked the styling from the beginning and now in 2011 I own onw. It is a machine, functional and elegant at the same time. Mine is black on black and reminds me of diamonds with a midnight sun. I would have no other.
     
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  10. Spend some time in the equisitively engineered machine and it just swallows you up. As an everyday car there are few that can compete with it.Drive it ten years from now and it still will be a joy to drive.Having owned many merc's they just deliver year after year and hold up better than any other German car I've owned. Must be the engineering.
     
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