Curiously, with the Mercedes CLS aimed at being rather more dynamic than the conventional executive saloon on which it’s based, it is the car’s refinement that is its overall defining feature. Fitted with the smooth V6 petrol engine, the CLS is an exceptionally quiet cruiser and it’s pretty good with diesel power, too.

Perhaps that fits with the sleek exterior shape, if not the CLS’s intended dynamic ethos. Much as having a four-cylinder diesel under the bonnet of such a car with sporting intent also seems odd, it actually works well.

Steve Sutcliffe

Editor-at-large
It's the CLS's refinement that is its overall defining feature

Think of the CLS not as a sporting four-door coupé, then, but as a modestly booted and very hushed executive saloon with a modicum of dynamic ability. It’s at its most impressive when cruising, rather than entertaining.

Those abilities combine with excellent fuel economy and an interior that’s a pleasure to spend time in: enjoy all these qualities, and don’t ask too much of the chassis, and you’ll find the CLS is in its thoroughly impressive element.

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