2013 Mercedes-Benz CLS Class Comfort & Quality

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Comfort & Quality
Having grown only slightly in overall length for the second-generation model's arrival in 2012, the 2013 Mercedes-Benz CLS Class is still close in overall size to the first-generation model, and shares its 113.2-inch wheelbase.

Despite the increase in overall length last year, the CLS Class gained only minimal passenger space, with improvements measured in fractions of an inch. The front seats are impressive in both comfort and technology, however, with 14-way electric adjustment even in base-model cars, and upgrades to air-bolstered active seats available. Optional seat ventilation is a very nice upgrade, improving comfort on hot days or long trips.

Leather upholstery, wood and metal trim, and high-grade plastics dominate the cabin. There can be no real displeasure with the CLS Class's interior construction or feel, even considering the $70,000-$100,000-plus price. In the CLS63 AMG, the experience is refined with Nappa leather, even more bespoke-seeming dash and door treatments, and rear-seat stitching to resemble the front seats.

A comfortable, spacious front seat contrasts with a tight back seat in the 2013 Mercedes-Benz CLS Class, but materials and build quality are impeccable.

The rear seat in either model is short on space in general, however. The tight head and leg room are as much a fault of the four-door coupe design as any failure in packaging, and while there's less room than we'd like, the rear seats are by no means unusable. For those that regularly transport three or more adults, however, a nicely-optioned E Class is a better option.

Trunk space is better than you'd expect given the sleek exterior shape of the rear end, but it's slightly smaller than the first-generation CLS. An optional power-closing trunk lid makes access easy, while in the cabin, two large upholders and a covered bin provide space for the typical American lifestyle.

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