2019 Genesis G90 vs. 2019 Mercedes CLS

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Both the G90 and the CLS have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors and available all wheel drive.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard front crash prevention system, and its headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the G90 its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2019, a rating granted to only 36 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The CLS has not been tested, yet.


The G90 comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes free 24-hour roadside assistance. The CLS’ 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 10,000 miles sooner.

Genesis’ powertrain warranty covers the G90 6 years and 50,000 miles longer than Mercedes covers the CLS. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the CLS ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

The G90’s corrosion warranty is 2 years longer than the CLS’ (7 vs. 5 years).

Genesis pays for scheduled maintenance on the G90 for 3 years and 36,000 miles. Genesis will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Mercedes doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the CLS.


J.D. Power and Associates rated the G90 first among large premium cars in their 2018 Initial Quality Study. The CLS isn’t in the top three in its category.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Genesis vehicles are better in initial quality than Mercedes vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Genesis first in initial quality, above the industry average. With 24 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 14th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Genesis vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Genesis 5 places higher in reliability than Mercedes.


The G90 3.3T’s standard 3.3 turbo V6 produces 3 more horsepower (365 vs. 362) and 7 lbs.-ft. more torque (376 vs. 369) than the CLS 450’s standard 3.0 turbo 6 cyl. hybrid.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the G90 5.0’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the CLS:


G90 5.0


Front Rotors

14.8 inches

14.2 inches

Suspension and Handling

The G90 has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The CLS’ suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the G90’s wheelbase is 8.7 inches longer than on the CLS (124.4 inches vs. 115.7 inches).

The G90’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (51% to 49%) than the CLS’ (53.9% to 46.1%). This gives the G90 more stable handling and braking.

Passenger Space

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the G90 a Large car, while the CLS is rated a Compact.

The G90 has 20.2 cubic feet more passenger volume than the CLS (113.2 vs. 93).

The G90 has 4.2 inches more front headroom, 4.4 inches more front legroom, 1.3 inches more front shoulder room, 2.1 inches more rear headroom, 2.8 inches more rear legroom and 1.4 inches more rear shoulder room than the CLS.

Cargo Capacity

The G90 has a much larger trunk than the CLS (15.7 vs. 11.9 cubic feet).


The G90 has a standard heated steering wheel to take the chill out of steering on extremely cold winter days before the car heater warms up. A heated steering wheel costs extra on the CLS.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Genesis G90 has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) for the front seat. Wireless charging costs extra on the CLS.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Genesis G90 has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) for the front seat. Wireless charging costs extra on the CLS.


The Genesis G90 outsold the Mercedes CLS by over two to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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