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CLS55 ride quality

 
Old 12-11-2012, 06:25 PM
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2006 CLS55
Smile CLS55 ride quality

Hi,

Please forgive the double post -- I put this over on the tires board but I think it may get more comments on a model-specific board.

Newbie here, got a 2006 CLS55 with 030 performance package a few months ago. However, Iím finding the ride quality to be a bit too harsh for my taste and Iím wondering what steps I can take to improve it. I love the engine, build quality, and looks of the car, so Iím going to keep it Ė trading it for a Lexus or whatever is not an option.

When I bought it, my CLS55/030 had aftermarket 20x9 and 20x11 wheels (3-piece, unknown brand) with 245/35/20 and 305/25/20 Hankook V12 tires. Iím told by a local wheel guy that those sizes are mismatched, either the front should be 255/30/20 or else the back should be 295/30/20. The sidewall height is noticeably different between front and rear. The dealer noted that the car had been lowered with washers on the Airmatic Ė I had them reverse everything, so I think the suspension is back to stock.

The ride is a bit busy on regular surface streets & freeways (California), and some sharper jolts over expansion joints, potholes etc. Itís not awful, but I want to try to smooth it out more. I donít want to mess with the suspension, just seeing what improvement can be made with wheels/tires alone.

As I see it, there are several steps that I could take:

0. Do nothing

1. Reduce air pressure in tires (but itís already at 33psi all around, going any lower I think might give excessive tire wear or heating)

2. Replace rear tires to increase sidewall height to be comparable to front

3. Do #2 and replace all 4 tires with a different brand/model. Searching the board showed a few postings where Michelin PSS was favorably compared to V12 in terms of ride smoothness.

4. Do #3 and also replace wheels, going down to 19-inch, and further increasing sidewall height (say 245/40/19 and 285/35/19)

5. Do #4 and specifically look for lightweight monoblock forged wheels to minimize unsprung weight.

I think the more I do, the smoother ride I can get, but also the cost goes up quickly. So my question is: what is the sweet spot for modifications to give the most improvement in ride? Put another way -- given my starting point, is the ride quality likely to improve most from: (a) taller sidewalls, (b) different tire compound/design, or (c) reduction in unsprung weight?

Any feedback is appreciated.
Thanks in advance.
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Old 12-11-2012, 07:03 PM
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Pics of wheels? lol
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Old 12-11-2012, 07:31 PM
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2006 CLS55
current wheels

here's what I have now...
Attached Thumbnails CLS55 ride quality-w1.jpg   CLS55 ride quality-w2.jpg   CLS55 ride quality-w3.jpg  
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Old 12-11-2012, 07:32 PM
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Those are nice...how much you want?
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:06 PM
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I would downgrade to OEM 19s 030 wheels that your car came with. I know someone selling them and I will take these 20s off your hands so you don't need to break the bank much.

Your car might not be level correctly after washers were removed. If you are near NYC or VA area, I can take care of that for you since I have the Mercedes computer to run a suspension test. Let me know
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Old 12-12-2012, 12:48 AM
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CLS 55 AMG
I have no complaints about my CLS 55's ride quality. I dig the air ride suspension with 20 inch wheels with Michelin tires.
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Old 12-12-2012, 08:39 AM
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It could be your wear and tear items are going bad. I had same issue where my motor mounts/ball joints were completely destroyed. Replaced them all and feels new.

My offer still stands on those wheels
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Old 12-12-2012, 12:15 PM
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djrabbi,

thanks for the offer. I do like the wheels so would like to keep them if I'm able to smooth out the ride with tires alone. I may do #2 or 3 on my list with Pilot Supersport and just see how it feels at that point. If I'm still not satisfied, I may go ahead & sell the wheels/tires and go down to 19s.

The motor mounts have already been replaced as part of a thorough (and expensive!) inspection/fix after I bought the car.

anybody else with input on ride quality as a function primarily of tire construction vs sidewall height (19 vs 20)?
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Old 12-12-2012, 12:39 PM
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Where are you located?
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Old 12-12-2012, 01:26 PM
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20s will suck in general. go with 19s and give me the wheels lol
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Old 12-12-2012, 01:48 PM
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Originally Posted by nyc1229 View Post
djrabbi,

thanks for the offer. I do like the wheels so would like to keep them if I'm able to smooth out the ride with tires alone. I may do #2 or 3 on my list with Pilot Supersport and just see how it feels at that point. If I'm still not satisfied, I may go ahead & sell the wheels/tires and go down to 19s.

The motor mounts have already been replaced as part of a thorough (and expensive!) inspection/fix after I bought the car.

anybody else with input on ride quality as a function primarily of tire construction vs sidewall height (19 vs 20)?
How much was the repair for motor mounts?
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Old 12-12-2012, 01:59 PM
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I got mine changed for $90+parts so like $250 total.
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Old 12-12-2012, 05:28 PM
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CLS55
the fronts i think are too big, they should be 30 not 35. the rears are correct, 25 is the size. Stock is 30r and 35f on 19s, I would not go bigger than that. The car rides much smother on 19's but i actually enjoy my car on the 20's. The CLS in general rides nice!

If you want a lil more comfort don't ride in sport suspension mode and soften the damping. It wont make a huge difference but it does make some.

Personally, the price of those pilots... idk if its worth it... The CLS CHEWS tires!!!

Maybe you are just driving too slow??? ; )
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Old 12-12-2012, 05:31 PM
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CLS55
BTW those link suck and will significantly impair your ride quality!!!
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Old 12-12-2012, 10:28 PM
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2012 CLS 63, 2013 Gallardo LP550
If you are looking for OEM wheels, I'm in orange county and have a set of the OEM 19" AMG wheels with somewhat new tires. These were from our old 2006 CLS 55. PM me if interested.
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Old 12-13-2012, 01:56 AM
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if u want to improve your ride...

change your wheels back to stock or at least a smaller size!

or just realize that you gotta pay to play...

and let me tell u what i am talking about

u see women walking in high heel shoes? i bet, it hurts like hell but they still do it

and why?!? because their *** looks good

so just man up (or women up) and take a couple imperfection in the road.

and if u roll around with low air pressure, you might bend your wheels
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Old 12-13-2012, 09:28 PM
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Keep in mind you have the 030 PP. It comes with a sport tuned suspension from the factory so it will be a bit firmer. I would throw some new tires on there and fill to recommended tire pressure with nitrogen, not lower.
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Old 06-14-2013, 03:43 AM
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New to the forum, I just picked up an 06 CLS55 with the 030 pkg with 10k miles, all stock. Love the car BUT rides too stiff for my taste. Can someone program the suspension to a standard non 030? I imagine that's all it is that makes it stiffer?? I can't find any information on exactly what is different as far as suspension goes. The real annoying thing about this suspension is the lateral sway, almost like its working the sway bars going straight! It's real sensitive to imperfections in the road compared to a stock non 030. Is the steering ratio different? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!
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Old 06-14-2013, 07:20 AM
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nyc1229
Are you sure you have p030. Those look like one piece front brakes.
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Old 06-16-2013, 04:25 PM
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I had the dealer pull the specs from the VIN and it does have the P030 package. But there's 92K miles and 2 previous owners, so maybe when they serviced the brakes they downgraded due to cost? Doesn't matter to me, I don't really care about P030 anyway, but am curious what the composite front brakes actually look like. Can someone with a P030 post a close-up photo of the front shoes and rotors? Thx
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Old 07-04-2013, 09:55 PM
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Without changing the wheels or tires...how can I get a P030 to ride softer?? No one seems to know what suspension parts (none that the dealer can find) or different programing are different compared to a stock CLS 55. Is there some type of re-calibration or change the valves (more or less oil flow??) to make it ride much softer?? If I can program it or change some parts for it to ride like a CLS 500 on comfort, that would be perfect!!
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Old 07-05-2013, 08:15 AM
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CLS, Grand Cherokee, Range Rover HSE, 70 cuda 440+6
Your tring to make a sports sedan ride like a luxury car. Just sell car and buy an S class. You just tring to get something that's not reachable. Sorry to say but You just got the wrong model mercedes.
What happened was you was so drawn to the sexiness of the CLS that when you drove it your body was numb..... Now that your used to it you can feel the road...
As they said in previous replies "Man-up"

The only possible thing you can do it put smaller rims on the car. 19" or maybe a 18" (18"might not clear big brake system). Don't listen to guys that say one in of tire size don't make a difference......Because it makes a world of a difference.
1 inch is better 2 inches are Dramatically better....
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Old 07-05-2013, 08:30 AM
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'05 E55
Why did you get (or not care) about a P030? They are designed to be more "aggressive" with 2-piece rotors/better calipers, stiffer valving in suspension, limited slip diff (to get power to the ground), etc.

It is more aggressive, but still very comfortable. Take a pic of your front brakes/rotors and post or PM to me and I can tell you for sure if it's P030.
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Old 07-05-2013, 08:31 AM
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You should have just got a CLS500.
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Old 07-05-2013, 08:40 AM
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I'd attribute it to those wheels. They allow almost ZERO sidewall on your tires. Look great, but giving up ride. Decide which is more important to you.
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