loading Loading please wait....

Mercedes-Benz CLS 55 & 63 AMG: Buying guide and review (2004-2010)

Mercedes-Benz CLS 55 & 63 AMG: Buying guide and review (2004-2010) Classic and Performance Car
Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG
As the first in a line of modern four-door coupes, the original CLS helped to inject some excitement into the straight-laced Mercedes-Benz range of the early 2000s. Based on the similarly-aged E-class platform, the first-generation CLS model was an altogether sportier proposition. A range of powerful V6 and V8 engines provided strong performance – but it was the mad AMG models that really got petrol heads excited.
Big German luxury car values tend to drop fast, and with the first generation CLS models having ended production seven years ago, there are some potentially very lucrative deals out there. Read on to see whether a used CLS AMG is still a desirable performance machine, or an outclassed old bruiser hell bent on drain your bank account.

Which Mercedes CLS AMG to buy?

The CLS arrived in 2004, and Mercedes wasted no time in introducing the first CLS 55 AMG at launch. The 5.4-litre Supercharged V8 may have been an old-school design, but it was a very effective hammer. With 476 bhp and 516lb ft torque at its disposal, it was a hooligan in a gentleman’s suit and 62mph arrived in a scant 4.7-seconds.
2006 saw the introduction of the even more unhinged CLS 63 AMG. The M156 6.2-litre V8 engine was down on torque slightly, but an additional 45bhp and the immediacy of its responses thanks to natural aspiration made it a real monster. The 0-62mph time was down by 0.1 of a second and the 6.2-litre V8 extended its advantage as the speeds rose into triple figures.
Standard specification on the top line AMG models was comprehensive. Electric seats and high quality audio system are just the beginning, with many owners specifying their cars up with keyless go, bi-xenon headlamps and radar-guided cruise control. Bear in mind that despite its size, the CLS is strictly a four seater, and rear headroom is somewhat compromised by the swoopy design. 
Rarely do you find so many positive comments from owners, the quality issues that afflicted so many Mercedes-Benz products of the early 2000s seem not to have been so much of a problem on CLS models. Post-2006 models received some additional safety features while a mild facelift freshened up the looks in 2008 and added two more forward ratios to the automatic gearbox. 

Performance and specs

Mercedes-Benz CLS 55 AMG
Engine  5439cc 24 valve SOHC V8
Power 469bhp @ 6100rpm
Torque 516lb ft @ 2650rpm
Transmission Five-speed automatic
0-62mph 4.7sec 
Top speed 155mph (limited)
Insurance group   50
Fuel consumption  20.8 mpg
Price when new  £68,000

Dimensions and weight

Wheelbase              2854mm
Length 4915mm
Width 1873mm
Height 1389mm
Weight 1920kg

Common problems

• Electrical issues have been noted by some owners; most come down to faulty switches, so it is worth checking that everything works beforehand.
• Air suspension can suffer from split bellows, and repairs can be pricey.
• Both the M113 5.4-litre Supercharged V8 and the latter M156 6.2-litre unit are strong engines and provided they are serviced regularly should be mostly trouble free. The 6.2-litre has been known to suffer from head bolt failures and the supercharged motors can suffer from oil starvation (identified by noisy lifters) if they have been neglected but issues occur mostly on modified examples.
• The extremities of the car are tough to judge when parking, so optional parking sensors are extremely useful. Almost all AMG models came with them.
• The suspension and tyres take a pounding thanks to the power and weight. Bald rear tyres and creaking noises over bumps may indicate abuse, and possible big bills in the future.
• Gearboxes are tough, and should shift smoothly through the ratios. Jerking or hesitation during pull off are very bad. 


The CLS may have been based on the less than reliable E-Class platform but, it did not suffer from many of the same issues. Nevertheless, a number of preventative recalls were issued and you should verify that your potential purchase has had the remedial work carried out: 

• Brake Control units could suffer damage, which may require more pedal pressure while driving than expected. All cars affected up to 31/12/2005

• Crankshaft sensor could lose signal resulting in non-starting and/or reduced power. Cars affected: 1/1/2006 to 31/12/2007

• Incorrect passenger airbag functioning cars built between 21/10/2010 and 30/05/2011 affected

• Power-steering signal issues could affect cars built between 01/11/2010 and 30/04/2011

Model history

2004: Mercedes-Benz CLS launched, featuring a range of V6 and V8 petrol powered engines – all models automatic only. CLS 55 AMG is powered by supercharged 469bhp 5.4-litre V8.

Turbodiesel model introduced.

CLS 63 AMG replaces CLS55 AMG. New naturally aspirated 6.2-litre V8 replaces 5.4-litre supercharged version. Power up to 514bhp but torque output is slightly lower. Pre-Safe and Neck-Pro safety systems introduced.

Facelift introduced across the range. Changes include redesigned bumpers and updated interior trim, as well as seven-speed ‘7G-Tronic’ automatic transmission replacing the five-speed unit.

First generation CLS production ends.

Owners clubs, forums and websites

• www.mercedes-benz-club.co.uk – Mercedes-Benz UK Car Club
• www.mercedesclub.org.uk – Owners club
• www.mbworld.org – Mercedes-Benz Forums

Summary and prices

While there are a fair number of standard CLS models for sale at any one time, the AMG variants are far more scarce. It’s best not to get too fixated on colour and spec, and focus on finding the healthiest example available within your budget.
A 2004 model year CLS 55 AMG with around 90,000 miles on the clock starts at around £10,000, with the last 2006 versions rising to around £13,500. The 6.2-litre V8s also start here, rising to about £20,000 for a 2010 model in perfect condition.
There’s no doubting that the CLS AMG models offer a lot of car for the money, but you really must factor in the running costs associated with a big, powerful V8. If you do, there’s little likelihood of being disappointed.  
Words: John Tallodi
Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG Mercedes-Benz CLS AMG
Last updated: 19th Jun 2017
collapse this

Mercedes-Benz CLS cars for sale

155 Search results
Mercedes-Benz CLS
4985 31480 GBP
  • Mercedes-Benz CLS Class

    £11,490 £11,490

    Full Screen Sat Nav, 18'' Alloy Wheels, Full Black Leather Interior, Electrically Adjustable And Heated Seats, CD Player, CD Changer, Bluetooth, Bi Xenon Headlights, Air Conditioning, Climate Control, Trip Computer, Cruise Control, Front And Rear PDC Two Owners From New. Very Low Mileage With A Full Mercedes And Mercedes Specialist Service History. Very High Specification Which Includes, Full Screen Sat Nav, 18'' Alloy Wheels, Full Black Leather Interior, Electrically Adjustable And Heated Seats, Radio CD, CD Changer, Media Input, Bluetooth, Front And Rear Park Distance Control, Air Conditioning, Climate Control, Arm Rest, Trip Computer, Cruise Control, Bi Xenon Headlights, Auto Lights And Wipers, Electric Folding Mirrors, Electric Windows, Remote Central Locking, Power Steering, Alarm, Immobiliser, Isofix. 4 seats, Palladium Silver Metallic, We Are A Family Run Business Specialising In Sports, Prestige And Performance Cars. Ideally Located On The Border Of Hampshire, Surrey And West Sussex. Our Showroom Is Situated A Stones Throw From The A3 And The London Waterloo To Portsmouth Train Line. All Vehicles Are HPI Checked And Come With A Comprehensive 6 Month Warranty Which Can Be Extended. We Offer Hire Purchase And PCP Finance Packages At Very Competitive Rates. Pleased To Be Approved Under The Hampshire Trading Standards 'Buy With Confidence' Scheme, Open 9.00-5.30 Monday To Saturday, Sundays And Out Of Hours By Appointment.

    • Mileage: 57000 mi
    • Engine size: 2987
    For sale
  • Mercedes-Benz CLS Class

    £16,000 £16,000

    COMAND Online Navigation, Heated Seats, Lane Tracking Package, Electric Sunroof, Air Conditioning, Bluetooth, Rain Sensing Wipers, Reverse Camera, Park Assist, DAB Radio, Automatic Headlights, 2-Zone Climate Control, Memory Seats, Full Leather, Parking Sensors, Cruise Control, 19'' Alloys, Full service history A stunning example of the luxury Mercedes-Benz CLS finished in Obsidian Black. Being the CLS350 it is certainly not short of power, giving you 265BHP with a 0-62 in 6.2 seconds. Addition to this already great specification, this vehicle has in total £5,075's worth of optional extras! A very well looked after vehicle, with services being done firstly with Mercedes-Benz main dealer and followed by 3 services with a Mercedes-Benz Independent Specialist. All of which are logged with the Mercedes-Benz online system and can be seen in our photos.

    • Mileage: 79000 mi
    • Engine size: 2987
    For sale
  • Mercedes-Benz CLS

    £16,495 £16,495

    Variant name:CLS350 CDI SPORT AMG ,Derivative:C218 ,Variant: CLS350 CDI SPORT AMG HERE WE HAVE AN EXCELLENT EXAMPLE OF MERCEDES SOUGHT AFTER COUPE THE 350 CLS FITTED WITH A HOST OF FACTORY FITTED OPTIONS INCLUDING AMG SPORT PACK,COMAND NAVIGATION,HEATED LEATHER FRONT SEATS THE POWERFUL YET ECONOMICAL 3000CC BLUE EFFICIENCY CDI ENGINE AND AUTOMATIC GEARBOX. 12 months warranty, Next MOT due 26/06/2018, Last serviced on 23/06/2017 at 69,211 miles, Full dealership history, Excellent bodywork, Grey Full leather interior - Excellent Condition, Tyre condition Excellent, Metallic Silver, THIS WELL MAINTAINED CLS 350 CDI IS SUPPLIED WITH A FULL MERCEDES DEALER SERVICE HISTORY WITH SERVICES CARRIED OUT AT 4K,6K,22K,36K,54KAND JUST AT 69K, TWO REMOTE KEYS,MOT UNTIL JUNE 2018,12 MONTHS WMS 5 STAR NATIONWIDE WARRANTY,12 MONTHS AA COVER AND HPI CERTIFICATE LOW RATE FINANCE OPTIONS AND EXTENDED WARRANTIES ALSO AVAILABLE, THIS CAR COMES WITH, Heated Front Seats, Upholstery - Leather, Reversing Camera, Alloy Wheels-18in 5-Spoke Design, COMAND Online Multimedia System, Telephone Pre-Wiring with Hands-Free Facility, Hard Disk Drive (HDD) Navigation System with TMC (Traffic Message Channel), Automatic Climate Control - Two -Zone, DAB Digital Radio Tuner, Speedtronic Cruise Control, Linguatronic Voice Control for Navigation, Parktronic with Active Park Assist, Navigation 50 Radio with Media Interface - 5.8in Colour Display - Single CD Drive (MP3 Compatibility), Alarm System, Electric Windows (4), Front Seats with Electric Adjustment, Bluetooth Interface for Hands - Free Telephony, Tyre Pressure Loss Warning System, Hill Start Assist, Rain - Sensing Windscreen Wipers, Upholstery - Black Leather, Metallic Paint, 18in Alloy Wheels (4) - 5 - Spoke Design (Front and Rear 255/40 Tyres)

    • Year: 2011
    • Mileage: 69000 mi
    • Engine size: 3
    For sale
  • Mercedes-Benz CLS Class

    £16,990 £16,990


    • Mileage: 32988 mi
    • Engine size: 2143
    For sale
  • Mercedes-Benz CLS Class

    £16,750 £16,750

    Black Leather Interior with Grey Contra Stitch, Black Ash Interior Inlays, AMG Sports Package, AMG Speedshift 7 with Paddleshift., Command System 8'' Colour Display, Sat Navigation, Bluetooth Phone Technology, Dual Zone Climate, Multiple Airbags, Cruise Ctrl With Speed Limiter, Powered Folding Mirrors, Electric Windows, Multi-function Steering Wheel, AMG Sports Seats, Heated Seats, Electric Seats, Front Centre Armrest, Driver Info System, Daytime Running Lights, Auto Headlights, Headlamp Jetwash, Rain-Sensing Wipers, AMG Body Syling, AMG Sports Suspension, 19'' AMG 5 Spoke Alloys, Parktronic, Rear Spoiler, USB Audio Interface, Factory Audio, Factory Alarm, Full main dealer service history

    • Mileage: 68000 mi
    • Engine size: 2987
    For sale
  • Mercedes-Benz CLS

    £16,989 £16,989

    AMG Exhaust, Command DVD APS Sat Nav, Phone Prep, Active Park Assist, DAB Radio, Universal Audio Interface, Bi-Xenon Headlamps, LED Daytime Running Lights, Tyre Pressure Monitor, Black Ash Wood Trim and 18" 5 Spoke Alloys. Full Mercedes Service History. Due in Soon. www.imperials.co.uk ------ Please call us to Confirm which of our 3 Essex Showrooms your desired vehicle is located at before travelling to see us, Everyone of Our Cars Goes Through Our In House Work Shop Prior to Sale by Our Fully Qualified and Experienced Technicians - Buy with Confidence, For up to 20 images of this vehicle and an Instant Finance Quote please view www.imperials.co.uk, For Out of Office Hours Enquiries please call Tony 07956 564440 and he will be happy to help, We are also good buyers of all prestige, Sports and 4x4 vehicles so why not give us a call for a price on yours, Please Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter, Thank You, www.imperials.co.uk

    • Year: 2011
    • Mileage: 33000 mi
    For sale
  • Mercedes-Benz CLS Class

    £9,995 £9,995

    Air Conditioning, Full Leather, Alarm, Anti-Theft System, Central Locking, Immobiliser, Remote Central Locking, Electric Seats, Must Be Seen, Alloy wheels, ABS, Air Bag, Electric Windows, Parking Sensors

    • Mileage: 103000 mi
    • Engine size: 2987
    For sale
  • Mercedes-Benz CLS Class

    £26,995 £26,995

    *** AA INSPECTED CAR *** High Specification CLS 350 in Diamond White Pearl with Black Leather Interior. Built with £4,375 worth of factory fitted extras including : Electric glass sunroof £990, Memory Package £715 (inc Electric Steering Column), Diamond White Metallic Paint £695, Sound-System Surround (Harman/Kardon Logic7) £650, Reversing camera £390, Heated Seats - Front £350, Tyre pressure monitioring system £295, Ambient interior lighting £290, Ash Black Wood Trim - high gloss, COMAND Media System with Satellite Navigation, 10GB Hard Disc Drive, Connections for USB/Ipod/Aux, Collision Warning, Bluetooth Phone with Audio Streaming, DAB Digital Radio, Bi-Xenon Headlamps with LED Daytime Running Lights. 2 Keys. 128 POINT AA INSPECTION INCLUDED WITH FULL REPORT. (report can be viewed at AACars.com) Car is in excellent condition, runs and drives beautifully. Call us to discuss delivery anywhere in the UK on this car. Have a look at our testimonials on our website to read more about us and the services we can offer our clients. Video walk around of this car available. 'Like' our page on Facebook for stock updates. This vehicle is HPI Checked and supplied with an AA Inspection & 12 Months AA Roadside Assistance. WarrantyWise Warranties Available for 6,12,24 or 36 Months. UK Nationwide Delivery Available. Finance Available - We have a range of lenders for all circumstances - CHALLENGE US TO BEAT YOUR

    • Mileage: 25656 mi
    • Engine size: 2987
    For sale
  • Mercedes-Benz CLS Class

    £6,000 £6,000

    Air Conditioning, Climate Control, Colour SatNav, Dual Climate Zones, Full Leather, iPod Connectivity, Memory Seats, Powered Folding Mirrors, Rain-Sensing Wipers, Xenon Headlamps, Alarm, Central Locking, Immobiliser, Locking Wheel Nuts, Remote Central Locking, Electric Seats, Front Centre Armrest, Head Restraints, Heated Seats, Height Adjustable Seat, Lumbar Adjustment, Retractable Headrests, Rear Armrest, Rear Headrests, Adjustable Steering Column, Cruise Control, Multi-function Steering Wheel, Parking Sensors, Power Steering, Traction Control, Trip Computer, ABS, Child Locks, Multiple Airbags, Auto Lighting, Colour Coded Body, Front Fog Lamps, Headlamp Jetwash, Metallic Paintwork, Auto-dip Rearview, Automatic Electric Windows, Electric Front Windows, Electric Mirrors, CD Player, Radio, Steering Wheel Audio Controls, Massaging Seats, 18'' Alloys, Full service history Prior to collection, the car will get 12 months MOT and also undergo our multi point inspection. This car comes as standard with a gold cover warranty.

    • Mileage: 87750 mi
    • Engine size: 2987
    For sale
  • Mercedes-Benz CLS Class

    £22,490 £22,490

    Hyacinth red metallic, Full porcelain leather, COMAND including wide screen SAT NAV, Driver and passenger heated seats, Parktronic front and rear with active park assist, Bluetooth, Single disc CD, Media interface with ipod connection, DAB digital radio, 19'' AMG alloy wheels, Full AMG body styling, Electric folding exterior mirrors, Cruise control, Multi function steering wheel with paddle shift gear change, Black ash interior wood trim, Driver and passenger electric seats, 2 owners from new, Only 27,000 miles, FULL MERCEDES BENZ MAIN DEALER SERVICE HISTORY, 3 stamps in the service book, Just been serviced and had 100 point health check at Mercedes Taunton, 2 keys, 1 year MOT, HPI clear, Excellent finance options available, Comprehensive 3 year warranty options available, EXCEPTIONAL CONDITION THROUGHOUT

    • Mileage: 23000 mi
    • Engine size: 2143
    For sale
Related Specification
Related content