The 2011 Mercedes-Benz CL-Class doesn't have enough ratings to earn a valid Total Car Score.
But this stylish luxury coupe does have many appealing features, including a powerful standard V8 engine and very powerful V12 option. It's also a stable and surprisingly nimble car given its size and weight, but no matter how you look at it, the Mercedes-Benz CL is big — really big.
On the plus side that makes it an impressive luxury touring coupe that will accommodate four passengers very comfortably — none of the others in this segment can make that claim. However, toting all of that mass keeps the CL from hanging with some of the more dynamic coupes in its class. Mercedes-Benz extinguishes most complaints with horsepower — lots of it — but the other Europeans in this group are still arguably more tossable and fun to drive.
For the 2011 model year, the CL-Class receives a facelift. In addition to a new front and rear fascia, there is a new hood and LED-based lighting on all four corners. Up front, a new turbocharged engine replaces the old naturally-aspirated unit to deliver fuel efficiency without any reduction in power.
The CL-Class is a status symbol in any guise, but if you want to climb higher the automaker also offers the tire-shredding CL63 AMG and CL65 AMG models.
The 2011 Mercedes-Benz CL-Class is a full-size, four-passenger flagship luxury coupe. Noted for its lack of a B-pillar, it is best understood as a two-door version of the automaker's flagship S-Class sedan.
All CL-Class models share the same body style, but there are multiple engine and powertrain offerings. The standard model is the CL550 4MATIC. It is fitted with a twin-turbo 4.6-liter V8 rated at 429 horsepower. A seven-speed automatic transmission is standard, sending power to a permanent "4MATIC" all-wheel drive system.
The CL600 boasts a twin-turbo 5.5-liter V12, rated at 510 horsepower. A five-speed automatic is the sole transmission in this model, sending power to only the rear wheels. Enthusiasts will also be interested in the CL63 AMG and the CL65 AMG, with even more power and a slew of additional performance upgrades.
Fuel economy tops out at 15 mpg city/23 mpg highway in the CLS550 4MATIC but drops to 12 mpg city/18 mpg highway for the twelve-cylinder CL600.
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