The Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class sports car is a rear wheel drive mid-size grand tourer produced between 1996 and 2009.The CLK-Class combines C-Class W202 and W203 platforms and E-Class engine, price, and styling. The 2009 is the end of the CLK C209/A209 second generation that offered longer, wider, and higher (61 mm (2.4 in) longer, 18 mm (0.7 in) wider and 28 mm (1.1 in) higher) than previous first generation (1996-2002) CLK Class models.
Body Styles: 2-door Convertible, and 2-door (B-pillarless) Coupe
Engines: Gas, 24-valve 3.5-liter V-6, 32-valve 5.5-liter V-8
Transmissions: 5-speed automatic, 6-speed manual, and 7-speed automatic
Models: CLK350, Grand Edition CLK350, CLK550, Cabriolet
The CLK63 AMG Black Series is not available in 2009. However, heated seats, Bluetooth, AM/FM/Weatherband satellite radio and Harman/Kardan 6-disc CD changer and six-speaker audio with ""vehicle-speed-sensitive volume adjustment"" are standard equipment in all models. There are ample auxiliary power outlet and MP3 audio input this year too. The (limited) CLK350 Grand Edition offers special styling and colors. You have the option of a B-pillarless style coupe or convertible; a V-6 or a V-8; 18-inch wheels.
The C-Class platform CLK will get a makeover and will be released as a 2010 model in Spring 2009.
Both Cabriolet and Coupe styles are similarly outfitted with front and rear high-performance tires, driver-controlled light-sensing headlamps, front and red rear halogen fog lamps, power-heated mirrors with driver memory, intermittent variable rain-sensing windshield wipers, and front and rear floor mats. Additionally the Cabriolet style includes an insulated all-season, electro-hydraulic convertible soft top with a glass rear window.
The CLK-Class has room for four in a sophisticated, sporty leather and burl walnut trimmed interior. Although seats are generally larger and comfortable critics are less enthusiastic riding in a cramped back seat. Seats are power, heated, with 3-positiion memory adjustment. The Coupe offers 60/40 split folding rear seatbacks. The leather-trimmed 4-way power steering wheel is equipped with audio and multi-function display controls and cruise control. The instrumented dash includes easy-reading speedometer and tachometer, quartz clock, and electronic fuel and temp graph gauges and multi-function cluster reminders, messages, audio and maintenance displays. The one-touch power windows, SmartKey remote, night security lighting, and anti-theft alarm system offers a personal sense of security. Dual climate control, and humidity, dust, and pollen eliminator sensors add comfort.
Performance & Handling
The CLK 350 boasts 258 lb-ft. torque and 268 horsepower from its 3.5-liter V6. The CLK550’s 5.5-liter V8 ups that to 382 horsepower and 391 lb-ft of torque. These CLKs accelerate quickly. While the V6 Coupe accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 6.4 seconds, the V8 goes from 0 to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds. Both are operated by a 7-speed automatic transmission with manual shift control. Although critics agree the CLK Class provides power and a smooth ride, they are disappointed with the ""soft suspension"" and overall absence of agility.
The CLK-Class is extremely reliable. Models have standard all-wheel ABS, anti-lock brake systems and stability control for easier handling on uneven or slippery surfaces. Daytime running lights, automatic tire-pressure monitoring and rollover-sensing pop-up roll bars afford the driver an added sense of visibility and mobile confidence.
Frontal and side impact crash test results gave the CLK-Class 8 stars out of 10. Models have auto crash notify, and when the unexpected does occur, dual-stage driver and front passenger ""head and thorax airbags"" coupled with three-point front and rear seat belts with emergency-tightening devices help protect precious cargo. The GPS system also helps ensure recovery if the vehicle is stolen. A remote door-unlock ensures quick and safe entry into the vehicle, particularly when parked in unfamiliar, remote, or poorly-lit areas.
EPA Fuel Economy
CLK-Class Coupe – V-6, 7-speed automatic: 17/25 mpg city/highway
CLK-Class Cabriolet – V-6, 7-speed automatic: 17/25 mpg city/highway
- Solid, comfortable, fast, reliable
- Design (B-pillarless)
- Coupe or Convertible
- Powerful V6 or V8
- An overall 8.2 (out of 10) rating by the critics
You Won't Like
- Price - Overpriced comfort and performance (in comparison to competitors)
- Dated styling
CLK63 AMG no longer available
- No manual is available
The end of the 2nd generation CLK-Class. The new E-Class coupe (based on the C-Class platform) will begin a new generation
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