Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 2022 evaluation – Higher than the Audi S7 and Porsche Panamera?

Mercedes-Benz likes to fill a distinct segment. That is the corporate, in spite of everything, that has a coupe model of its GLC and GLE SUVS, four-door coupes ranging in measurement from the CLA to the AMG GT 4-door, and sufficient electrical automobiles to make Tesla jealous.

The nichest of all although, may the CLS, which has been up to date for the 2022 mannequin yr.

Positioned above the E-Class however under the S-Class within the line-up as a sporty sedan for patrons after a mix of fashion, know-how and efficiency, the brand new CLS is offered in only one engine now, whereas styling and tools have additionally been tweaked within the replace.

Can the CLS earn its place within the Mercedes line-up or is it destined to be a bit participant amongst extra well-liked fashions?

Does it symbolize good worth for the worth? What options does it include?   7/10

When the third-generation Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class hit Australian showrooms in 2018, it was obtainable in three flavours, however the 2022 refresh has trimmed the line-up to only one – the top-spec AMG-tuned CLS 53.

The discontinuation of the entry-level CLS350 and mid-tier CLS450 means the CLS-Class now kicks off at $188,977, earlier than on-road prices, which makes it dearer than rivals just like the Audi S7 ($162,500) and Maserati Ghibli S GranSport ($175,000).

Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 2022 evaluation – Higher than the Audi S7 and Porsche Panamera? Customary tools features a sunroof. (Picture: Tung Nguyen)

With BMW ditching the 6 Sequence, the Bavarian model doesn’t supply a direct rival to the Mercedes-AMG CLS 53, however its greater 8 Sequence is obtainable in a Gran Coupe physique type that begins at $179,900.

So, what does Mercedes embrace within the CLS’s asking value?

Customary tools consists of inside ambient lighting, a head-up show, 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, power-adjustable and heated entrance seats, woodgrain inside trim, powered boot lid, rear privateness glass, push-button begin, keyless entry, and a sunroof.

As an AMG mannequin, the 2022 CLS can also be fitted with a novel steering wheel, sports activities seats, illuminated door sills, drive mode selector, 20-inch wheels, a efficiency exhaust, boot lid spoiler and blacked-out exterior bundle.

As an AMG model, the 2022 CLS is fitted with 20-inch wheels. (Image: Tung Nguyen) As an AMG mannequin, the 2022 CLS is fitted with 20-inch wheels. (Picture: Tung Nguyen)

Dealing with multimedia duties is a 12.3-inch ‘MBUX’ (Mercedes-Benz Consumer Expertise) touchscreen, with capabilities together with Apple CarPlay/Android Auto connectivity, digital radio, a wi-fi charger, satellite tv for pc navigation and a 13-speaker Burmester sound system.

It’s a protracted and fully-featured tools record, for positive, and it’s so intensive that there aren’t actually any choices obtainable.

Patrons can go for an ‘AMG Exterior Carbon Fibre Package deal’, power-closing doorways, and totally different finishes for the outside paint, inside trim and seat upholstery – that’s it!

Whereas its good that every thing you’d need comes included within the asking value, it’s onerous to disregard the truth that its Audi S7 rival is greater than $20,000 cheaper, but in addition effectively geared up.

Handling multimedia duties is a 12.3-inch 'MBUX' touchscreen. Dealing with multimedia duties is a 12.3-inch ‘MBUX’ touchscreen.

Is there something fascinating about its design?   7/10

Mercedes’ homogenised design is a little bit of a double-edged sword, and whereas the CLS does put on its styling confidently, it in all probability appears somewhat an excessive amount of just like the cheaper and far smaller CLA for our tastes.

Each are swoopy four-door coupes from Mercedes-Benz, so in fact there can be some similarities, however keen-eyed automotive spotters will discover some variations.

Whereas the proportions are comparable, the longer wheelbase and bonnet line provides the CLS a extra mature look, and the additional particulars discovered within the head- and tail-lights, and entrance bumper stand it aside.

The adjustments to the 2022 model additionally brings in AMG’s ‘Panamericana’ entrance grille, which provides a little bit of welcome aggression to the entrance finish.

All four doors are frameless, which is always cool to see. (Image: Tung Nguyen) All 4 doorways are frameless, which is all the time cool to see. (Picture: Tung Nguyen)

From the aspect, the steeply raked roof flows seamlessly into the rear, whereas the 20-inch wheels fill out the arches effectively.

All 4 doorways are additionally frameless, which is all the time cool to see.

From the rear, quad-exhaust ideas trace on the CLS’s sporty intentions, whereas a distinguished rear diffuser and delicate boot lid spoiler additionally characteristic.

Inside, the largest change to the CLS is now the inclusion of the MBUX multimedia system, which retains it in step with the E-Class, C-Class and different Mercedes fashions.

AMG sports activities seats are additionally fitted, wrapped in Nappa leather-based and ‘Dinamica’ cloth upholstery for all pews.

From the rear, quad-exhaust tips hint at the CLS’s sporty intentions. (Image: Tung Nguyen) From the rear, quad-exhaust ideas trace on the CLS’s sporty intentions. (Picture: Tung Nguyen)

Our check automotive additionally got here fitted with purple distinction stitching and seat belts, including a racy streak to the CLS cabin.

Need to level out the brand new steering wheel that comes with the 2022 CLS, although, which mirrors the tiller provided within the new E-Class, and is a step again by way of performance.

It appears premium sufficient due to its chunky leather-wrapped rim and gloss black dual-spoke design, however utilizing the buttons, particularly when on the transfer, is tough and unergonomic.

This design is certainly perform over type, and may want a number of extra revisions to get it proper.

General, we’d say the CLS is a handsome automotive, however does play it a bit too protected with its styling?

Inside, the biggest change to the CLS is now the inclusion of the MBUX multimedia system. (Image: Tung Nguyen) Inside, the largest change to the CLS is now the inclusion of the MBUX multimedia system. (Picture: Tung Nguyen)

How sensible is the area inside?   7/10

Measuring 4994mm lengthy, 1896mm vast, 1425mm tall and with a 2939mm wheelbase, the CLS slots neatly between the E-Class and S-Class in measurement and positioning.

Up entrance, occupants are afforded ample room for head, legs and shoulders, whereas the electronically adjustable seats make it simple to discover a snug place.

The steering wheel additionally incorporates a telescoping perform – an all the time appreciated characteristic – and the expansive glasshouse makes issues really feel open and ethereal.

Up front the electronically adjustable seats make it easy to find a comfortable position. (Image: Tung Nguyen) Up entrance the electronically adjustable seats make it simple to discover a snug place. (Picture: Tung Nguyen)

Storage choices embrace a deep door pocket, a cubby discovered underneath the armrest, two cupholders and a smartphone tray with wi-fi charging capabilities.

It’s a unique story within the second row, although, because the sloping roofline does noticeably eat away at headroom.

Don’t get me improper, a six-foot-tall (183cm) grownup can nonetheless slide in there superb, however the roof is dangerously near the touching the highest of the pinnacle.

Our test car came fitted with red contrast stitching and seat belts, adding a racy streak to the CLS cabin. (Image: Tung Nguyen) Our check automotive got here fitted with purple distinction stitching and seat belts, including a racy streak to the CLS cabin. (Picture: Tung Nguyen)

Leg- and shoulder-room is fairly good within the outboard seats although, whereas the center place is compromised by the intrusive transmission tunnel.

Within the second row, passengers have entry to a bottle holder within the door, a fold-down armrest with cupholders, backseat map pockets and two air vents.

Opening the boot reveals a cavity providing 490 litres of quantity, with an aperture vast sufficient to suit golf golf equipment or baggage for a weekend getaway for 4 adults.

The rear seats additionally fold in a 40/20/40 break up style, however Mercedes-Benz is but to element how a lot quantity is on supply with the rear seats down. And as a standard sedan, the CLS is much less sensible than the liftback Audi S7.

Opening the boot reveals a cavity offering 490 litres of volume. (Image: Tung Nguyen) Opening the boot reveals a cavity providing 490 litres of quantity. (Picture: Tung Nguyen)

What are the important thing stats for the engine and transmission?   9/10

Powering the Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 is a 3.0-litre turbocharged inline six-cylinder engine, punching out 320kW/520Nm to all 4 wheels by way of a nine-speed automated transmission and Merc’s ‘4Matic+’ AWD system.

A 48-volt mild-hybrid system, generally known as ‘EQ Increase’, can also be fitted that serves as much as 16kW/250Nm from take-off.

The result’s a 0-100km/h acceleration time of 4.5 seconds, preserving it on tempo with the likes of the 331kW/600Nm Audi S7 (4.6s) and 390kW/750Nm 250kW/500Nm BMW 840i Gran Coupe (5.2s).

Whereas not as brutish as AMG’s eight-cylinder engine, the straight six strikes an important steadiness between tempo and poise that completely fits a mannequin just like the CLS 53.

Powering the Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 is a 3.0-litre turbocharged inline six-cylinder engine. Powering the Mercedes-AMG CLS 53 is a 3.0-litre turbocharged inline six-cylinder engine.

How a lot gas does it eat?   8/10

Official gas consumption numbers for the CLS 53 are pegged at 9.2 litres per 100km, whereas we managed a mean of 12.0L/100km in our launch drive.

All of our driving was relegated to nation again roads and high-trafficked city areas nevertheless, with no constant freeway driving.

We’ll reserve judgement on how correct the gas economic system figures are till after we’ve had the automotive for longer, however the EQ Increase system is designed to assist hold consumption down by with the ability to coast the engine specifically conditions.

What security tools is fitted? What security ranking?   8/10

The Mercedes-Benz CLS is but to be examined by ANCAP or Euro NCAP, which implies there is no such thing as a official crash-test ranking that applies to native market automobiles.

Nevertheless, the usual security tools record is intensive, and covers autonomous emergency braking (AEB), 9 airbags, rear cross-traffic alert, blind-spot monitoring, tyre strain monitoring, a surround-view digicam, route-based pace recognition and lane-change help.

The rear seats additionally characteristic two ISOFIX mounting factors for baby seats.

Guarantee & Security Ranking

Fundamental Guarantee

5 years / limitless km
guarantee

What does it value to personal? What guarantee is obtainable?   9/10

Like all new Mercedes-Benz fashions bought in 2021, the CLS 53 comes with a five-year/limitless kilometre guarantee with roadside help over that interval.

This outclasses the peace of mind interval provided by BMW, Porsche and Audi (three-year/limitless kilometre), and matches that obtainable from Jaguar, Genesis and Lexus, who lately upgraded their providing.

Scheduled service intervals are each 12 months or 25,000km, whichever happens first.

The primary three deliberate providers will set patrons again $3150, damaged down as $700, $1100 and $1350 apiece.

What’s it prefer to drive?   9/10

There are specific expectations on a car when it wears a Mercedes badge, particularly it ought to be snug to drive whereas additionally dripping with the most recent tech. And right here the massive four-door coupe delivers in spades.

Driving the automotive is clean, simple and cozy when in its default drive setting, you may actually sink into the CLS and simply eat up the miles in consolation.

One of the best parts of the CLS 53 experience, is the sound, with the exhaust letting off the right sort of pops and crackles in Sport+ mode on overrun. The most effective components of the CLS 53 expertise, is the sound, with the exhaust letting off the proper type of pops and crackles in Sport+ mode on overrun.

There are small niggles, just like the 20-inch wheels and low-profile tyres (245/35 entrance and 275/30 rear) throw up a bit an excessive amount of street noise into the cabin, however for essentially the most half, round city, the CLS is serene, supple and supremely soothing.

Nevertheless, swap it over to Sport or Sport+ and the steering will get a bit heavier, the throttle response a bit sharper, and the suspension a bit stiffer.

Does it remodel the CLS right into a sports activities automotive? Not fairly, however it definitely dials up driving engagement to a stage the place you may actually have some enjoyable.

Switch it over to Sport or Sport+ and the steering gets a bit heavier. Swap it over to Sport or Sport+ and the steering will get a bit heavier.

Although this isn’t a full-fat AMG in the identical vein as an E63 S and doesn’t characteristic the ever present 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8, the CLS 53’s 3.0-litre six-cylinder engine remains to be a lot potent.

Coming away off the road feels significantly brisk, doubtless as a result of EQ Increase system including a little bit of poke, and even flat-footing it mid-corner delivers a noticeable surge of urgency from the creamy straight six.

Nevertheless, the most effective of the CLS 53 expertise, in my view, is definitely the sound, with the exhaust letting off the proper type of pops and crackles in Sport+ mode on overrun.

Driving the car is smooth, easy and comfortable. Driving the automotive is clean, simple and cozy.

It’s impolite and obnoxious, but in addition utterly stunning coming from the motoring equal of a three-piece gown go well with – and I find it irresistible!

The brakes are additionally as much as activity for scrubbing pace, however our comparatively transient time with the automotive was in extraordinarily moist situations, so the 4Matic+ AWD system was vastly appreciated.

Verdict

Comfy when it must be and sporty once you need it to be, the CLS 53 is a bit like Mercedes’ Doctor Jekyll and Mr Hyde – or possibly Bruce Banner and the Hulk is a greater body of reference for some.

Whereas it doesn’t excel in anyone explicit space, its breadth of useability is commendable, however in the end it could be its all-too-familiar aesthetics that’s the largest letdown.

From the within, it appears and appears like some other giant Mercedes mannequin (not essentially a criticism), whereas the outside – in my view – doesn’t go far sufficient to distinguish it from the CLA.

In spite of everything, in the event you wished a classy and sporty sedan, shouldn’t really feel particular too?