2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class

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2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class: The Master Of Style

When the third-generation Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class first showed its face in the USA back in 2018, we were taken aback by its bold styling and elegant form. Now, in 2021, the Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class 4-door sports coupe looks better than ever. It is technically a more practical E-Class and follows the same design principles as competitors like the Audi A7 and BMW 8 Series Gran Coupe. Under the sleek bodywork of the CLS-Class coupe lies a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-6 gas engine producing an impressive 362 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of to. Mercedes-Benz's electric EQ Boost system adds 21 hp and 184 lb-ft for short periods, making this a seriously punchy car. It might have a small trunk and isn't the sharpest handling, but thankfully style counts the most in this segment of the market, and the 2021 CLS-Class has that in spades.

Read in this review:

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2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Changes: ๐Ÿš™Whatโ€™s the difference vs 2020 CLS-Class?

Few things have changed for the new 2021 Mercedes CLS-Class. The previously optional 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster is now standard equipment and, more importantly, the aging COMAND infotainment system has been replaced with an up-to-date feature-rich MBUX system. While this can be a little bewildering in terms of feature count, it's powerful and versatile once you've crested the learning curve. The standard specification is still slightly lacking, especially in terms of driver-assistance features, but at least the 2021 model's augmented reality adaptive cruise control now takes live traffic information into account, and the automated emergency braking system can recognize oncoming traffic.

Pros and Cons

  • Gorgeous styling
  • Solid build quality
  • Powerful engine
  • Refined interior
  • Intuitive infotainment system
  • Optional AWD
  • Tight rear passenger space
  • Pricey options
  • Competitors boast better handling

Best Deals on CLS-Class

2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Trims and Prices

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
CLS 450
3.0L Turbo Inline-6 Gas
9-Speed Automatic
Rear-Wheel Drive
3.0L Turbo Inline-6 Gas
9-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive

CLS-Class Exterior

2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Front View Mercedes-Benz
2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Rear View Mercedes-Benz
2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Front Angle View Mercedes-Benz
See All 2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Exterior Photos


  • Length 196.4 in
  • Wheelbase 115.7 in
  • Height 56.3 in
  • Max Width 73.8 in
  • Front Width 63.8 in
  • Rear Width 64.1 in
  • Curb Weight 4,134.0 lbs

Exterior Colors

  • Cirrus Silver Metallic
  • Selenite Grey Metallic
  • Graphite Grey Metallic
  • Mojave Silver Metallic
  • Obsidian Black Metallic
  • Lunar Blue Metallic
  • designo Cardinal Red Metallic
  • designo Diamond White Metallic
  • designo Selenite Grey Magno
  • designo Manufaktur Deep Green
  • designo Manufaktur Midnight Blue
  • designo Manufaktur Graphite Metallic
  • designo Manufaktur Teide Light Grey
  • designo Manufaktur Cote d'Azur Light Blue Metallic
  • designo Manufaktur Arabian Grey
See all 18 colors

CLS-Class Performance

2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Front View Driving Mercedes-Benz
2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Rear View Driving Mercedes-Benz
2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Engine Mercedes-Benz

Engine and Transmission

The 2021 CLS 450 Coupe is powered by a turbocharged 3.0-liter M256 6-cylinder engine that produces 362 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. Power is sent to the rear-wheel drivetrain via a 9-speed automatic transmission, though there is always the option of 4Matic all-wheel drive. Performance is impressive, and the EQ Boost system all but eliminates turbo lag while adding 21 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque for short bursts. With all that power under the right foot, this vehicle can sprint to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds, or 4.8 seconds in AWD guise, and will reach a top speed of 130 mph. Fuel economy is decent thanks to turbocharging, but the mild hybrid assistance does nothing to help.

  • Engine
    3.0L Turbo Inline-6 Gas
  • Transmission
    9-Speed Automatic
  • Drivetrains
    AWD, RWD

CLS-Class Gas Mileage

  • Fuel Tank Capacity
    21.1 Gallons
  • Fuel Economy
    City/Hwy: 23/30 mpg
* 2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class CLS 450 RWD

CLS-Class Interior

2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Dashboard Mercedes-Benz
2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Central Console Mercedes-Benz
2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Driver Seat Mercedes-Benz
See All 2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

  • Seating capacity
  • Front Leg Room 41.9 in
  • Front Head Room 36.9 in
  • Rear Leg Room 35.0 in
  • Rear Head Room 35.9 in

CLS-Class Trunk and Cargo Space

2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Rear Passenger Seats Mercedes-Benz
2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Steering Wheel Controls Mercedes-Benz
2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Rear View 1 Mercedes-Benz
  • Trunk Volume
    11.9 ft³

CLS-Class Safety and Reliability


  • Basic:
    4 Years \ 50,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    4 Years \ 50,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    4 Years \ 50,000 Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    4 Years \ 50,000 Miles

Verdict: ๐ŸIs the 2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class a good car?

When it comes to four-door luxury coupes, few do it better than Mercedes-Benz. The 2021 CLS-Class is, however, a flawed piece of automotive jewelry. It looks stunning from all angles and is arguably the most attractive car in its class (it's definitely better looking than the Audi A7, at least), and its interior is a stunning display of opulence, but that's pretty much where it stops. Sure, the MBUX infotainment system is lovely to use, but when you boil it down, the CLS-Class coupe is little more than a piece of art on four wheels. Both the BMW 8 Series Gran Coupe and Audi A7 provide a better driving experience, and there's very little trunk and rear passenger space on offer in the Merc. The 3.0-liter turbo engine does deliver good punch, but it's a shame that this great powertrain isn't backed up by an equally responsive chassis. There is no NHTSA or IIHS safety rating review of the 2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class, but as a premium German product, safety and general reliability should be good. If style is all you're after, look no further.

๐Ÿš—What Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class Model Should I Buy?

We'd go for the 4Matic AWD car in Cirrus Silver Metallic with the optional AMG Line package, which adds a set of 19-inch alloys, AMG interior styling, a sport steering wheel, and brushed stainless steel pedals. As far as extras go, we would recommend going for the $1,950 Driver Assist package, which adds driver aids such as lane change assist, blind-spot assist, evasive steering assist, and route-based speed adaptation. This option triggers the $2,300 Premium Package, which also adds a Burmester sound system, a surround-view camera system, and more. We'd also get wireless phone charging and the $1,100 head-up display. The total price of the 2021 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class coupe with this build comes to $81,120, including a destination fee of $1,050.

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