A Detailed Look at the Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class Second-Generation

CLK 209

Table of Contents

Overview of Mercedes Benz CLK

The C209/A209 Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class was the second generation that was produced as a mid-sized, rear-wheel drive luxury vehicle from 2003 to 2010. This one was followed by the successful first generation (W208) produced from 1997 to 2002. The C209/A209 models feature a blend of sportiness, comfort, and luxury, which is also reflected in Mercedes-Benz’s commitment to delivering high-quality vehicles.

This CLK-Class vehicle comes with an elegant exterior design featuring smooth lines and a well-proportioned body. The A209 was the convertible version, and the C209 was the coupé. This model also included a range of gasoline engines.

Throughout the production run of this model, the CLK-Class offered many special editions and performance-focused variants, like the AMG Black Series.

There’s a lot more to this model than described above. Sounds interesting? Get more insight into the second generation of Mercedes Benz CLK by reading till the end.

Origin and Evolution

Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class included the C209 coupe and A209 cabriolet models. Its first generation, produced from 1997 to 2002, was introduced as a replacement for the E-Class coupé and cabriolet models. These vehicles had more of a traditional and angular design. As for the second generation, we noticed a more modern and curvaceous design. This one had a more aerodynamic and sleek appearance. The C209 coupe version was introduced at the 2002 Geneva Motor Show.

The convertible models of Mercedes-Benz CLK have an electric soft top of three layers. These models were initially produced in 2003 in Osnabrück by Karmann but later shifted to Bremen, Germany, in the following year.

The CLK-Class also included a Sports package that featured a restyled front bumper and a spoiler lip on the boot. Its other AMG models were:

  • CLK 55 AMG – Powered by a 5.4-liter V8 engine with 362 hp and 376 lb-ft of torque.
  • CLK DTM AMG – It was a limited edition model that celebrated the racing version’s DTM championship victory boasting a 5.4-liter V8 engine with 574 hp.
  • CLK 63 AMG – Equipped with a 6.2-liter V8 engine producing 475 hp and 465 lb-ft of torque.
  • CLK 63 AMG Black Series – It was the ultimate CLK-Class AMG, featuring a 6.2-liter V8 engine with 500 hp and 465 lb-ft of torque.

With the second generation came the advancement in technological features like the availability of the COMAND infotainment system, enhanced audio, improved safety features, and a navigation system. Special focus was also given to the safety features with innovations like adaptive headlights and stability control.

This generation also offered a wider range of engine choices, including inline-four, V6, and V8 engines. They also had aspirated and supercharged options. This CLK-Class was later succeeded by the Mercedes-Benz E-Class Coupé and E-Class Cabriolet, and it marked the end of the CLK model line.

Power, Performance, and Efficiency

You could see a wide variety of petrol and diesel engines in the second-generation Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class. The popular engine options include the 1.8L Inline-4, which was a smaller engine that was used in some entry-level models only. It was capable of producing 181-189 horsepower, while the torque output for its engine was approximately 250 lb-ft. Then there’s a 3.0L V6 engine, which was a common choice as it offers a good balance of power and efficiency. This engine has the capacity of producing 215-268 horsepower, and its torque generally falls within the range of 220-258 lb-ft.

While it was such a powerful and amazing vehicle, the second generation of Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class had many electrical issues, particularly related to the Sensotronic Brake Control (SBC) system. This system controlled the braking functions and known to have many failures. These issues could lead to brake-related malfunctions, like sudden loss of brake pressure, resulting in safety concerns.

Another top engine choice in the second generation of Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class was the 3.5L V6 Engine. This engine produced 268 horsepower, while its torque was around 258 lb-ft. However, for those looking for more power and sportier driving features, there’s a 5.0L V8 engine that can produce 302 hp and 339 lb-ft.

Lastly, we have a 6.2L V8, which is obviously a larger V8 engine producing more power. This engine could deliver 475 – 500 hp and 465 lb-ft of torque.

Exploring the Interior Features

The second generation of the Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class comes with a luxurious interior, offering a lot of comfort and convenience. For instance, the seats in the cabin are covered with premium materials that are super comfortable during long drives. There are also the options of power-adjustable seats, heating, ventilation, and memory functions.

The steering wheel is also multifunctional, having controls for easy access to audio, phone, and navigation controls without taking your hands off the wheel.

Interior Color Options

There was a wide range of options for the interior as well, allowing customers to personalize according to their choice. Here’s what you get:

  • Brown
  • Black
  • Gray
  • Beige
  • Blue
  • Red
  • Two-tone

Exploring the Infotainment Technology

First off, we have a central display screen, the COMAND system, in the center of the dashboard. Though this screen size varies significantly, it was used for various functions, including navigation, audio, and system settings. There is also a GPS-based navigation system that enables the drivers to access turn-by-turn directions. For audio and entertainment, you will find various sources like CD/DVD players, MP3 compatibility, and AM/FM radio. There is also the option of Bluetooth connectivity that allows drivers to connect with the smartphones. In some models of the Class-CLK, the COMAND system was integrated with climate control, enabling users to adjust climate settings through the infotainment interface.

Space and Storage in Mercedes Benz CLK

The Mercedes Benz CLK was not very impressive in terms of space and storage. These models had good ride quality and came out to be amazing in terms of comfort. However, when it comes to storage, we are a bit disappointed.

For instance, the trunk space in the second-generation CLK-Class coupé (C209) typically ranges from about 9.4 to 12.9 cubic feet, depending on the model. The convertible models have even smaller trunk space that is typically around 7.3 to 8.5 cubic feet.

As for the cabin, headroom for front-seat occupants can range from about 37 to 38 inches. It may be slightly less for a rare-seat passenger due to the coupe’s sloping roofline.

Safety Features

As discussed earlier, the second generation of the Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class emphasized more on technology and safety. That said, you will find a lot of amazing safety features in this model that make driving safe and convenient. For instance, there are multiple airbags for head protection, even in side impacts. Other safety features include electronic stability control, anti-lock braking system, adaptive headlights, brake assist, tire pressure monitoring system, active cruise control, lane departure warning system, rain-sensing wipers, etc. Immobiliser, Anti-theft Alarm, and Central Locking are also present. However, cameras and parking sensors are optional in these vehicles.


  • Smooth ride quality
  • High-quality material supportive seats
  • Open-air driving with Cabriolet (A209) models
  • Availability of a wide range of engine options


  • Fuel economy is not that impressive
  • Higher cost of ownership
  • Limited trunk space in convertible (A209) models

Decoding Fuel Economy of Mercedes Benz CLK

Though the CLK-Class model has a lot of amazing vehicles, this vehicle doesn’t impress us in terms of its fuel economy. You can expect 8.6 – 9 l/100km in the city, 5.1 – 5.4 l/100km on the highway, and 6.4 – 6.8 l/100km combined for the second generation of the CLK-Class model.


The second-generation vehicles of the Mercedes-Benz CLK are now sold based on mileage, condition, and various other factors. However, the typical price of this car falls in the range of $4,500 – $25,500. However, this significantly depends on the body style, model, and area.

Drive Abilities

You will have a relatively quiet experience as you start the engine of the CLK-Class. It comes out to be super smooth, particularly in non-AMG models. The sound also depends on the engine. For smaller engines like the V6 and inline-4, they tend to be quieter. Overall, the engine noise was well-contained within the cabin to maintain a refined ambiance.

As you cruise through the city road, you feel super comfortable due to the automatic transmission (common in these models) offering smooth and seamless gear changes, making stop-and-go traffic more manageable. It is also the compact car size that makes it easier to maneuver in urban environments. When on the highway, the comfort remains the same. The suspension system of the car effectively absorbs the road imperfections, thereby minimizing the vibrations.

The well-insulated cabin creates a super comfortable interior at high speeds. It is also the responsive steering and stable handling that contribute to a confident and composed feel on the highway.


There is no doubt that the second-generation Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class is a stylish yet well-equipped car and comes with a variety of powerful engine options to cater to different needs. This is typically appreciated by those who enjoy long highway drives and require advanced features and a quiet cabin at the same time. However, the potential buyers should be well-prepared for the higher costs associated with its ownership. Ultimately, if you’re in the market for a stylish and prestigious car with a strong heritage, the CLK-Class is the way to go.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Does the second-generation CLK-Class have a good resale value?

Indeed. This vehicle offered some amazing features of its time that are still in demand. And since Mercedes-Benz often has a good resale value, the CLK-Class also works well in this regard.

What are some common issues in the Mercedes-Benz second-generation CLK-Class?

The problem is usually with the electronic systems such as the COMAND infotainment system. Moreover, a lot of issues have been reported about the transmission and air suspension.

Do we have the CLK-Class in all-wheel drive models?

Yes, a lot of models of the second generation CLK-Class were available with the 4MATIC all-wheel drive, providing better stability.

Written by: Motorcardata

Your comprehensive website, your one-stop destination for a vast collection of articles and information about every car brand in existence.

More Goodreads from Motorcardata

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.