CL600 - do ex-owners regret owning or selling?

MikeInWimbledon

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My SL500 and E500 S211 are coming up to 50k and 60k miles respectively, and now that the kids have left home, I'm being nagged to rationalise to one vehicle - and I fancy a mid-noughties W215 CL500 or bi-turbo CL600.

Can ex-owners tell me whether it would be a mistake to go for a V12 CL600 instead of the more obvious V8 CL500 ?

I have no fears about budgeting 2-3k a year for fettling and routine maintenance (plugs, coils), and I know to buy something where the ABC has been re-done, but is the overall reliability of the CL600 really as bad as some reading makes out?

(As a BTW - I'm not at all interested in the CL55 - I've done AMG before and I prefer my motors to be luxurious, smooth and quiet)

So, for the CL600, do ex-owners regret owning their CL600? Or do they regret having sold it?

(I can see that something like 40% of W215 CL600's have already been scrapped, (compared to just 20% of W215 CL500's) so I fear for the worst...

https://www.howmanyleft.co.uk/?utf8=✓&q=cl600
 
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HB

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Pm woodythewise. He had a cl600 for quite a while and can tell you lots.
 
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MikeInWimbledon

MikeInWimbledon

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Many thanks, will do
 

Alex

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Regret selling my CL600 bi-turbo. Best engine Mercedes have ever made.
 

AndyRan

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(I can see that something like 40% of W215 CL600's have already been scrapped, (compared to just 20% of W215 CL500's) so I fear for the worst...

https://www.howmanyleft.co.uk/?utf8=✓&q=cl600
Thats a scary amount that have been scrapped :( Such a shame

I had a CL500 for a year or so before moving up to a CL63 (W216) I always wanted the 600 but never pulled the trigger on the W215 - The main headache i read about is the coil packs - there are also very few bi-turbos about so slim pickings as a lot of the 600's are NA V12's

A v12 itch must be scratched :)
 

Ginger55k

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As there are not that many 600 owners on the forum and mine is the SL version all I can say and agree with ALx fantastic engine, like you previous AMG though supercharged lump which had fantastic grunt low down the rev range where the torque eases off on the 55 the 600 carry's on up another level stunning performance.

If you budget as you say for potential issues and account for this then I say go for it and scratch the v12 itch.:D
 

MPG

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I'm happy to share my experience - my daily driver is a 54 plate W215 CL600 that I've owned about 2.5 years. It's black on black with the staggered 19" AMG alloys and brakes. Just before I bought it the previous owner spent about 3k on coil packs and a replacement shock. Since then I've probably spent about the same having replaced the a/c condensor, water pump, radiator & battery.
Coil packs can be an issue as they're known to fail somewhere between 70-100k and taking 12 spark plugs each are rather unique. ABC issues are obviously something that can impact any W215. You'll also find it tends to eat rear tyres (I'm about to replace a set of rears that have covered around 7k miles). Essentially that's down to the power - anyone that's driven both the CL55 & CL600, will tell you how much quicker the 600 is, although to be honest its a bit arbitrary as both are continent munching beasts. Although quoted as 500bhp, the M275 engine is known to produce nearer 550 & the torque is a totally grin inducing 590 lb ft at just 1.8k rpm. Basically, rocket ship power is available anywhere in the rev range. Couple that with how quiet and smooth it is & you've got a fun way of getting from A-B which lets face it, is what its all about, or we'd be driving Golf's. One other thing to bear in mind is fuel - it needs premium unleaded and in return over mixed motoring has averaged about 17mpg for me. A long motorway run can push that up towards 25, but realistically treat any mpg you get over 20 as a bonus.
 

imkaz

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In my opinion V8 would be better than the V12. Maybe more performance and all that from V12, but the V8 will sound so much better than the V12.

I wish there was someone converting all ABC suspension to a more suitable alternative, it would make these cars more desirable!
 
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MikeInWimbledon

MikeInWimbledon

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Not so sure about replacing ABC suspension. Having owned ABC on the SL500, and cart springs on the SL350, ABC gave a much higher quality ride. For a luxury S Class based car like the CL500, a few bob spent on maintaining that beautiful suspension seems money well spent on a luxury car.
 

BIRMA

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About a year ago I was looking to replace my Phaeton, I love the look of the 216 CL, much more modern in design compared to the older model.
Over a few months I tried a CL 63 with the N/A 6.2 engine that I had in my SL63 and I liked it. Then I tried the later twin turbo CL again very nice too. As a complete wildcard I tried a CL600 having done a bit of research I had reservations about coil packs etc.
The car I tried had a full spec and was in very good condition and there was just something about the power delivery that got me hooked, although the other two performed well the seamless delivery of power of the V12 really impressed me. OK I'll admit cost wise the V12 will eat your hard earned dosh if you buy a less than perfect one.
In the end the completely bonkers CL65 got my vote and to this day I swear it's everything I've ever wanted in a car.
My advice would be to buy a low mileage one if at all possible with a full MB service history or from someone who has been prepared to look after it properly, as I've read numerous horror stories about replacement parts being required one after the other.
Maybe I was lucky because I've had my V12 now for 9 months and only spent out on servicing, the excellent MB service plan is worth getting, it's designed for V12's.
I get 18 MPG regardless of how I drive and believe me the V12 can really scare you with it's smooth cartoon like way it propels itself down the road.
I'll probably keep the CL longer than usual as I'm thinking of replacing my Phaeton with a 2015 Audi S8 like Penelope Pitstop on here recently had and keeping the CL65 as a week-end blaster/treat I like it that much.
 

Swotty

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I've had my 2003 CL 600 for almost 4 years now and have changed coil packs, spark plugs, petrol pump, fuel metering bits, primary air pump and soon the secondary air pump on the cat system. Car has full service history and had only done 46,000 miles in the 11 years before I bought it. New tyres, to me, are normal running costs and they were cheaper than my Jag XKR which has 20" wheels and 285s on the rear.

Would I change it? Only for another one. Perhaps those written off were crashed, rather than scrapped due to cost?

If you're thinking of getting one, you MUST drive it first. They are not the quickest off the line (but no slouch either!), due to weight and wheelspin but, where it shines is once on the move. Acceleration is both brutal and linear due to the tremendous torque. It handles well for a 2 tonne car, if you use the sport setting.

But .... it's also a refined and extremely comfortable car with all the luxury you could want, apart from the naff Merc satnav which takes you down every side road to shave 1m off the journey distance, it seems.

You're right to factor in an annual budget for maintenance .... these are cars costing over £100K new and you can't expect to run them on a shoestring. They also need to be used regularly and not left sat for weeks on end.

Mine also has a couple of "rust" bubbles which I am told is a reaction between the aluminium panels and the steel fixings. Others don't notice them, but I know they're there. They will have to be addressed and I have in mind to have the car resprayed in a better colour than Iridium Silver. Many wouldn't bother, I'm sure, but I like my cars to look nice.

I bought mine to satisfy a need for the coupé shape and a V12. Very nearly went for a Daimler Double Six, but completely different animal altogether .... saloon and only 300 bhp! Glad I bought the Merc.

Test drive one .... walk away from it and look back at that shape, then fire it up. Iron fist in a velvet glove.

And, yes, 98 octane ..... but I have to put that in my classics anyway. Who's counting the pennies when you're enjoying your motoring?

Good luck!

Stuart
 

BIRMA

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There is a guy on the Mercedes Benz forum who is tackling a 215 series V12 CL very informative but scary and time consuming. Not for me, I'd run a mile.
 
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MikeInWimbledon

MikeInWimbledon

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I've had my 2003 CL 600 for almost 4 years now and have changed coil packs, spark plugs, petrol pump, fuel metering bits, primary air pump and soon the secondary air pump on the cat system. Car has full service history and had only done 46,000 miles in the 11 years before I bought it. New tyres, to me, are normal running costs and they were cheaper than my Jag XKR which has 20" wheels and 285s on the rear.

Would I change it? Only for another one. Perhaps those written off were crashed, rather than scrapped due to cost?

If you're thinking of getting one, you MUST drive it first. They are not the quickest off the line (but no slouch either!), due to weight and wheelspin but, where it shines is once on the move. Acceleration is both brutal and linear due to the tremendous torque. It handles well for a 2 tonne car, if you use the sport setting.

But .... it's also a refined and extremely comfortable car with all the luxury you could want, apart from the naff Merc satnav which takes you down every side road to shave 1m off the journey distance, it seems.

You're right to factor in an annual budget for maintenance .... these are cars costing over £100K new and you can't expect to run them on a shoestring. They also need to be used regularly and not left sat for weeks on end.

Mine also has a couple of "rust" bubbles which I am told is a reaction between the aluminium panels and the steel fixings. Others don't notice them, but I know they're there. They will have to be addressed and I have in mind to have the car resprayed in a better colour than Iridium Silver. Many wouldn't bother, I'm sure, but I like my cars to look nice.

I bought mine to satisfy a need for the coupé shape and a V12. Very nearly went for a Daimler Double Six, but completely different animal altogether .... saloon and only 300 bhp! Glad I bought the Merc.

Test drive one .... walk away from it and look back at that shape, then fire it up. Iron fist in a velvet glove.

And, yes, 98 octane ..... but I have to put that in my classics anyway. Who's counting the pennies when you're enjoying your motoring?

Good luck!

Stuart
 
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MikeInWimbledon

MikeInWimbledon

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Thanks for reviving this thread from 2016. It'll be useful for those contemplating a CL600.

Myself, two years on, I'm heading in the opposite direction, and I'm now planning to be a W212 E500 estate this Summer.

Wives? What can you do with them?

M
 

John

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That V12 does sound amazing (as do V10s) but I prefer the unbalanced V8 sound just that bit more!

I certainly wouldn't be looking for an S class Merc if I heard that one coming.
 

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