Mercedes-Benz CLS (2011–2018)

What's good

Feels high quality from behind the wheel.

Lovely styling is an evolution of original CLS.

CLS 500 sounds superb while 350 CDI is the pick of the range.

What to watch out for

On models that require AdBlue, the AdBlue tank sits in the spare wheel well, precluding the carrying of a spare wheel and tyre.

28-1-2014: 2012 CLS 250 CDI recalled to have injectors replaced. Returned with far worse fuel economy. Suggests that original injectors that achieve EC CO2 emissions and economy are not robust enough to last and that stronger replacments are not as efficient.

22-9-2015: Recall in India of E-Class and CLS sold between April 2015 and May 2015 for a loose seal in the secondary bulkhead in the engine compartment. The loose seal can come in contact of the engine and lead to a fire.

12-6-2017: Report of rear brake pipe corrosion and split axle bushings on 92,500 mile 2011 Mercedes Benz CLS 350. Estimated bill £800.

10-11-2017: Report of fire in rear under load deck of 2014 Mercedes Benz CLS Shooting Brake.

26-11-2017: Another report of a fire in a Mercedes-Benz CLS250 CDI Shooting-brake. Owner had complained to Mercedes dealer about an intermittent burning smell coming from the rear end for some time but has been fobbed off by the dealer as something which will disappear over time. (Possibly the DPF actively regenerating at 800C.) Last week it eventually burst into flames on a friends drive. It was unoccupied fortunately but is a write off. Mercedes appears completely disinterested, claiming they have no knowledge of this occurring in any other CLS’s. Apparently there have been many instances and recalls in the US. This also appears to be a problem with UK models but no recalls and little cooperation from Mercedes.

Recalls

TSB recall of 250 CDI to replace injectors.

23-7-2017: MB issued a voluntary recall to apply software upgrades to diesel engines in a bid to cut nitrogen oxide emissions on three million vehicles. All Euro 5 and Euro 6 standard diesel engines registered in Europe between January 2011 and September 2015 are affected. (Only the new two-litre turbodiesel fitted to the latest E-Class saloon and a new V6 turbodiesel in the soon-to-be released S-Class are exempt.) A Mercedes-Benz spokesman said that the “software upgrade” would be carried out by dealerships when customers visited for a service or other maintenance work and would take around an hour to complete. MB “did not expect” the upgrade to have any effect on the performance of Mercedes-Benz vehicles. Many Mercedes-Benz diesel vehicles have already had the update applied after work to apply the changes to compact vehicles and the V-Class MPV got underway in March. It was reported in The Times in July that while Daimler, which manufactures Mercedes-Benz, had not been found to use the same type of software for cheating emissions tests discovered in Volkswagen vehicles in 2015, it is the subject of an investigation by the German authorities into the possible manipulation of exhaust controls in cars with diesel engines.

What is your car like to live with?

We need your help with our latest Satisfaction Index, so that we can help others make a smarter car buying decision. What's it like to live with your car? Love it? Loath it? We want to know. Let us know about your car - it will only take a few minutes and you could be helping thousands of others.

Help us with the Honest John Satisfaction Index now