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2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Review

The Mercedes CLS-Class has a gorgeous interior, a cushioned ride, and brisk engine performance. However, this sleek sedan ranks midpack due to its tight rear seats and above-average ownership costs.

Pros & Cons

  • Superb ride and handling
  • Powerful V8 engines
  • Attractive, high-quality interior
  • Cramped rear seats




Critics' Rating: 8.4
Performance: 8.5
Interior: 7.8
Total Cost of Ownership: 7.4
This model has never been fully tested for safety. Its overall score is being calculated without safety.
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Overview

Is the 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class a Good Used Car?

The Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class is a good option if you’re shopping for a used luxury large car. Considered a four-door coupe due to its sweptback roofline, the CLS pleases with potent engine options, an agile yet comfortable ride, and elegant styling inside and out. It’s a sedan that drives as confidently on twisting canyon roads as it does cruising down the highway. It’s not without its drawbacks, though. The CLS isn’t as practical as many of its class rivals, which offer roomier rear seats.

Used 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Performance and Interior

The Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class is available with three twin-turbocharged engine options. The CLS550 base model has a 402-horsepower V8. The CLS63 AMG gets a 550-horsepower V8, and the CLS63 AMG S-Model shares a pumped-up 577-horsepower version of this engine. Each is paired with a seven-speed automatic transmission. The CLS550 has standard rear-wheel drive, but all-wheel drive is available. Both AMG models feature Mercedes’ 4Matic all-wheel drive as standard.

Regardless of engine choice, all CLS models move up to speed with confidence and offer robust passing power on the highway. The transmission’s quick yet seamless shifts deserve part of that praise. The CLS550 can sprint to 60 mph in just 5.1 seconds; AMG models make it in under 4 seconds. Fuel economy ranges from 17 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway with the CLS550 to 16/22 mpg city/highway with the AMG models, which is on par with class standards. The CLS strikes a superb balance between ride comfort and athletic handling. The sedan has quick steering and feels remarkably planted through tight turns, yet its adaptive suspension yields a smooth ride and isolates passengers from all but the harshest bumps and dips in the road.

Read more about CLS-Class performance »

The Mercedes-Benz CLS pleases with graceful interior styling and top-notch materials. The CLS is somewhat impractical as a family sedan, with seating for only four. The plush, supportive front seats provide fine comfort over long drives. There’s ample head- and legroom up front as well. The rear seats are separated by a center console with storage cubbies. The back seat is a squeeze for tall passengers; the coupe-like roofline cuts heavily into rear headroom, and rear legroom is tight. There are two full sets of LATCH connectors for securing child car seats. Heated front seats and leather upholstery are standard; ventilated front seats and a massaging driver’s seat are available. The CLS has a decent 15.3 cubic feet of trunk space.

Mercedes equips all CLS sedans with a 7-inch infotainment screen, a navigation system, AM/FM/satellite radio, Bluetooth, and USB and SD card plugs. The COMAND infotainment system uses a control knob located on the center console and additional dashboard buttons. The system reacts quickly to inputs, but accessing a number of simple functions can feel overly complex.

Read more about CLS-Class interior »

Used 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Prices

The price of a used 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class ranges from about $39,800 for a CLS550 sedan to around $60,500 for a CLS63 AMG S-Model. Prices vary depending on the vehicle's condition, mileage, features, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

We Did the Research for You: 18 Reviews Analyzed

We’ve researched 18 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class reviews, as well as hard data points like reliability scores and cost of ownership estimates, to help you make the best car-buying decision possible.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking cars for a decade, and we have 75 years of automotive industry experience combined. While we’re passionate about cars, we’re even more committed to giving helpful consumer advice. To ensure our reviews remain impartial, we refuse gifts and trips from car companies, and the advertising on our site is handled by an outside team.

How Reliable Is the Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class?

The Mercedes-Benz CLS has solid reliability, earning a score of four out of five from J.D. Power and Associates.

Read more about CLS-Class reliability »

How Safe Is the CLS-Class?

Neither the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration nor the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety have published crash test results for the 2014 CLS-Class.

The CLS is available with many advanced safety features, including forward collision warning with brake assist (Pre-Safe Brake), adaptive cruise control (Distronic Plus), blind spot monitoring, lane keep assist, parallel park assist (Parktronic), rearview and night vision cameras, and adaptive pivoting headlights. All models are equipped with a driver drowsiness monitor as standard equipment.

Should I Consider Another Used CLS-Class?

The 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS marks the third model year of the vehicle’s second generation. Updates for 2014 included a new CLS63 AMG S-Model with 577 horsepower and the addition of standard all-wheel drive in both AMG variants. The CLS-Class was otherwise unchanged, so you may find similarly equipped 2012 and 2013 models at significantly lower prices.

Compare the 2012, 2013, and 2014 CLS-Class »

Which Used Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Is Right for Me?

Mercedes offers the 2014 CLS-Class in three trim levels: CLS550, CLS63 AMG, and CLS63 AMG S. All share the same standard equipment, which includes leather upholstery, heated front seats, dual-zone climate control, a navigation system, a 7-inch infotainment screen, Bluetooth, satellite radio, a CD player, a USB input, remote keyless entry, mbrace internet connectivity, a driver drowsiness monitor, and a sunroof. Available features include ventilated front seats, driver’s seat massaging, a suite of active safety features, and proximity keyless entry (Keyless-Go), which unlocks the doors automatically.

You may also want to consider a certified pre-owned CLS-Class. Mercedes-Benz certified pre-owned vehicles come with the balance of the original four-year/50,000-mile new-car warranty, plus an additional one-year/unlimited-mileage warranty. If the new-car warranty is expired, you’ll just receive the one-year/unlimited-mileage warranty. Every Mercedes-Benz CPO vehicle must pass a 164-point inspection. Additional benefits like towing and roadside assistance may be available, so read the Mercedes-Benz warranty page carefully.

Read more about certified pre-owned vehicles »

Read more about the Mercedes-Benz certified pre-owned program »

2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class and Other Cars to Consider

Which Is Better: 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class or 2014 Mercedes-Benz E-Class?

The 2014 Mercedes E-Class and CLS-Class sedans are built on the same vehicle platform and share many safety and convenience features. Both have refined driving dynamics and impeccably dressed interiors. However, the E-Class is the better luxury car – and the better buy. The luxury midsize E-Class has a roomier cabin with better headroom and seating for five, offers more engine options (including an efficient V6, hybrid, and turbodiesel), and typically costs much less to buy and maintain.

Which Is Better: 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class or 2014 Audi A7?

The Audi A7 mirrors the CLS’ slender four-door coupe body style. Both luxury vehicles offer sumptuous interiors, many advanced safety features, satisfying handling, and muscular V8 engines. Unlike the CLS, however, the A7 has a hatchback with far more cargo space. It’s also available with potent yet efficient V6 engines, and it scores better for reliability and ownership costs. The Audi is the better pick.

Which Is Better: 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class or 2014 BMW 6 Series?

The BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe is another four-door coupe cut from a similar cloth as the CLS. Both impress with brisk engine performance, balanced handling, and top-notch interiors. The BMW earns particular praise for its user-friendly infotainment system. Ultimately, both trail the A7 with higher ownership costs and less trunk space, but if you had to pick one, the CLS’ stronger reliability rating gives it the edge.

Compare the CLS-Class, A7, and 6 Series »


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