Welcome to the third option in the new Mercedes-Benz A-Class lineup: the CLA. If the regular five-door family hatchback or the recently unveiled A-Class Saloon don’t float your boat, this four-door coupé might be for you.
The new CLA is a big car, being longer than its predecessor, the A-Class Saloon and even the BMW 4 Series Gran Coupé from the class above. It’s also wider and sits lower to the ground than the car it replaces, as well as having more space between its front and rear axles. READ: 2019 Mercedes-Benz C300 4Matic Model
That extra space has liberated a bit more room for rear passengers, especially in terms of elbow room, but boot space is actually slightly down on the previous CLA, at 460 litres. That’s still more than is offered in the A-Class hatchback or saloon, though, and should be enough for a couple of suitcases or a large shopping haul.
For buyers seeking more practicality from the CLA, an estate variant, the CLA Shooting Brake, is due to go on sale later in the year.
Mercedes says this CLA will be better to drive than its predecessor, too, thanks to all of its wheels being set farther apart and it having a lower centre of gravity. In particular, there should be less noise and vibration coming into the interior.
Buyers can specify alloy wheels ranging from 16in to 19in.
2019 Mercedes-Benz CLA interior
Inside, the CLA is familiar territory and features the same MBUX multimedia system that has impressed us so much in the A-Class hatchback, spread across two large screens.
Controlled through a touchpad on the centre console, with hand gestures or through natural speech (the car can recognise commands that start with “Hey Mercedes”), the MBUX system has been upgraded with new features in the CLA. For example, the system can now detect whether the driver or front passenger is issuing a command and react accordingly (adjusting the correct seat’s massage function, for example) and even give you comfort tips if you’re wearing a Garmin smartwatch.
2019 Mercedes-Benz CLA engines
So far, Mercedes has only confirmed that the CLA will be offered in CLA 250 form, featuring a 221bhp 2.0-litre petrol engine and a seven-speed automatic gearbox, but it’s expected that the majority of engines from the A-Class hatchback will also be available, including entry-level 1.3-litre petrol and diesel options from the A180 and A180d respectively. Four-wheel drive will be offered on the CLA, too.
ALSO READ: 2019 Mercedes Slc Price
Two performance versions of the CLA are planned and will be sold with 35 and 45 Mercedes-AMG badging.
Like the regular A-Class, the CLA borrows semi-autonomous driving technology from the S-Class luxury limousine, allowing the car to control is own acceleration, braking and steering on the motorway. Automatic emergency braking and lane-keeping assistance are also among its suite of safety technologies.
2019 Mercedes-Benz CLA price
Official pricing hasn’t been announced yet, but given the CLA’s position at the very top of the A-Class range, it’s expected to cost around £29,000. That would put it close to the larger C-Class in terms of price and make it considerably more expensive than class rivals such as the BMW 2 Series Coupé.
Fortunately, Target Price savings on the current CLA appear to be generous, and What Car? New Car Buying can currently save you an average of £2700 across the range.