2005 Mercedes-Benz CL65 AMG Long-Term Road Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 10,237
edited September 2014 in Mercedes-Benz

image2005 Mercedes-Benz CL65 AMG Long-Term Road Test

A used 604-horsepower, V12-powered 2005 Mercedes-Benz CL65 AMG joins our long-term test fleet.

Read the full story here


  • emajoremajor Member Posts: 332
    This could be very very amusing. The question here isn't whether buying a used luxury car is a good idea, it's whether buying a used ostentatious pseudo-supercar with ridiculous running costs & even more ridiculous failure rates is a better idea than buying it new for $180K when it will lose 70% of its value by fifty-five thousand miles. A twin turbo V-12. May God have mercy on your soul if anything breaks.
  • kyolmlkyolml Member Posts: 37
    Yes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love it!!!!!!!!!!

    Finally you guys made a decision and stuck with it.

    Always want to know how expensive and how DIYerable once it's broken. If everything can be fixed DIY this might be a good deal!
  • marcos9marcos9 Member Posts: 96
    lol, this is awesome. Looking forward to updates!
  • omairkhanzadaomairkhanzada Member Posts: 6
    Thank you for finally posting something users might be interested in. I love the CL65 and can't wait until you guys do tests and figures to see how owning one might be like. Also, bring Insideline back.
  • jps429jps429 Member Posts: 8
    way to go guys!! i will be following this closely. we need some comparisons to the Vette and 911 please!
  • benson2175benson2175 Vancouver, BCMember Posts: 68
    Awesome! As an owner of a W140 S-Class I'll say it's not as bad as people say but it is a slow bleed. I still love it and for me I couldn't drive anything else.
  • ed341ed341 Member Posts: 0
    These kind of adventures go hand in hand with being a car enthusiast, unless you're very wealthy. I'm playing this same game with my 2006 Range Rover. Yes I could have had a new Hyundai with a great warranty for the same price, but where's the fun in that? Live life to the fullest.
  • throwbackthrowback Member Posts: 445
    Nice choice! The CL500s of this series can be had for under 25K.
  • drerx8drerx8 Member Posts: 3
    I can't wait for to see how this turns out...
    Trust me...I have an R230 SL and myself and wallet know the ABC all too well
  • markinnaples_markinnaples_ Member Posts: 251
    I cannot wait to watch this one unfold. Depreciation of $4 per mile is completely outrageous, but a benefit to those of us with more shallow pockets. Good luck!
  • noburgersnoburgers Member Posts: 500
    I wondered if Edmunds was going to continue buying older models for the Long Term fleet. My guess is that maintenance and repairs will be very costly, but when you add them to the low purchase cost you end up with overall would probably be considered reasonable. What YOUR resale price will be at the end of the test, however, will reveal if it was worth it.
  • noburgersnoburgers Member Posts: 500
    I wondered if Edmunds was going to continue buying older models for the Long Term fleet. My guess is that maintenance and repairs will be very costly, but when you add them to the low purchase cost you end up with overall would probably be considered reasonable. What YOUR resale price will be at the end of the test, however, will reveal if it was worth it.
  • birdsmellfunnybirdsmellfunny Member Posts: 0
    Nice choice. I imagine this is going to be a very expensive experiment.
  • bankerdannybankerdanny Member Posts: 1,021
    Fun. Do a comparison test with your new Corvette.
  • seth111976seth111976 Member Posts: 1
    This. Is. Awesome.

    I started reading this blog a few years ago when you purchased the Ferrari and starting driving it around for a year. I'm glad to see the tradition continuing with this purchase. There is not a car guy on in this country who's looked at the stat sheet of those early '00 Mercedes along with their current used pricing and thought, "Should I?" I'm glad to see Edmunds stepping up to do this.

    Hopefully you're accountants will agree after 12 months...
  • mercedesfanmercedesfan Member Posts: 365
    I'm afraid you guys may regret this. You chose to buy a Benz from their least reliable era by far and equipped it with a V12 that is notoriously finicky. There is a reason these things depreciated like rocks. Good luck! haha
  • evodadevodad Member Posts: 135
    awesome, I"m not a huge MB fan, but I love the used car reviews and luxury/performance cars that have depreciated to within the reach of the average joe have really struck my interest in recent years. Perhaps I will look back into picking up an nsx...
  • diondidiondi Member Posts: 71
    I once considered a CL500 - used - as my first car but shied away from the expensive maintenance and repair costs. I will get to live vicariously through you guys!
  • adamb1adamb1 Cookeville, TNMember Posts: 122
    Looks like a photo shopped burnout to me.
  • jlh3jlh3 Member Posts: 14
    Great. Let's see what the repair cost will be over the next 20K miles. I remember, maybe back over the summer when Edmunds originally began tossing this idea around. Now lets see what happens. I actually test drove a used 05 S55 a few weeks ago. It needed work and was not worth the $19K they were asking. I told the guy call me when you get the seat, radio, distronic, and brakes checked. He calls a week later and says they sold the car off at auction. It needed $9K in repairs.
  • juddholl10juddholl10 Member Posts: 84
    This is by and large the best decision you've ever made. And that interior is in AMAZING shape. Whoever owned that car before took real care of it. My '09 A4 shows more wear than that. I can't wait to read more about this one.
  • fordson1fordson1 Unconfirmed Posts: 1,512
    I freaking love it. The people who bought the base-model Camry with plastic seat covers AND the extended warranty will scold, but I am really curious to see if this follows the trajectory of the SLS you just had, or if it provides max fun for the buck and does not cost TOO much to run.
  • cuselancer17cuselancer17 Member Posts: 53
    good buy!!!
  • loseitloseit Member Posts: 7
    should be interesting!
  • bankerdannybankerdanny Member Posts: 1,021
    Tell me again why it is that only "intoroduction" articles have no link to comments and why is it that Edmunds can't either (a) hire a competent CTO or purchase working software or both?
  • darthbimmerdarthbimmer Member Posts: 606
    Buying a luxury car used-- the question posed in this story's title on the main page-- is often a good idea. It's a way to get, for example, a $50k car for $20-30k that still looks great, runs great, and has lots of rewarding miles of life left. I've done it twice and recommend it. But I'm not so sure about the wisdom of buying a $180k car at $35k. Why did its value plummet? The trap when buying used at such a small fraction of the original price is repairs. Maintenance costs are going to be inline with a $180k exotic, not a $35k near-luxury car or even a $50k entry-luxury car.
  • duck87duck87 Member Posts: 649
    I'd only do this if I had something like a CPO or Carmax type warranty... You guys are nuts and but I love it! Can't wait to see what happens over the year...
  • 330i_zhp330i_zhp Member Posts: 55
    I'm surprised and happy at this purchase. Much like your previous Ferrari, it's not something most people are shooting to own simply because of maintenence, but it's something many enthusiests are very curious about. I'll be following this one very closely.
  • stovt001_stovt001_ Member Posts: 799
    Actually when I was in Indianapolis a few years back I saw an ad for brand new homes that I certainly wouldn't call small going for the low $100Ks, so the money for this car when new could have actually bought you a medium-large house in a flyover state, possibly with a little extra property too. Glad you guys finally got this, I know the idea has been kicked around for quite a while.
  • themandarinthemandarin Member Posts: 436
    Keep your checkbook in the glovebox
  • juddholl10juddholl10 Member Posts: 84

    This car depreciated so much because of its inflated value when new. It's not a classic, so it doesn't hold a collectors only high price tag when used. The car looks to be in really good shape (interior wear is a great way to tell how much
  • paublo73paublo73 Member Posts: 1
    I came precariously close to buying a 2004 M-B E500 4matic wagon last spring for $16,000. It had 65,000 miles and just had the airmatic suspension fixed on it. I chickened out figuring the repair/maintenance costs would add up soon. I ended up getting a new 2013 RAV4 and figured I'd be at the same price point within a couple years if I bought the Benz. I will be reading this with great interest.
  • miedenmieden Member Posts: 75
    This is gonna be so bad...
  • neogyneogy Member Posts: 1
    Bring on the updates.
  • zhangrenhouzhangrenhou Member Posts: 79
    I'm glad you'll be evaluating this car. I've always been fascinated by it!
  • majin_ssj_ericmajin_ssj_eric Member Posts: 49
    I'll be very interested to see what (if anything) breaks on this car and how much it ends up costing you. I've always adhered to the adage that "You never want to own an out-of-warranty German car" myself...
  • velocity_xvelocity_x Member Posts: 10
    First !
  • velocity_xvelocity_x Member Posts: 10
  • omairkhanzadaomairkhanzada Member Posts: 6
    Come on
  • cbrandi_cbrandi_ Member Posts: 40
    I never thought of this car as desirable. For one, it wasn't particularly good looking. Crazy power for a country where 65mph is the speed limit. I'd have gotten the Bentley or a Maserati for the money.
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