Let’s face it, more often than not Malaysians make car purchase decisions based on their emotions. The emotive factor of a car is a make or break deal for many, which is why the Mercedes-Benz CLA, a car banking on its seductive design enjoyed decent success over the years here in Malaysia because the car just makes you feel good getting in and out of it.
The second-generation Mercedes-Benz CLA has just made its global debut at the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and we have to say, it looks fine as heck. Well, the three-pointed star did promise that the new CLA will be the “most emotional vehicle of its class”.
At a glance, the CLA is essentially a shrunken CLS four-door coupe. But where the CLS appeals to more established and mature demographics, the CLA tugs the heartstrings of the young and young at heart with its emotive design.
The CLA features the brand’s latest iteration of its Sensual Purity design language, with a long, stretched bonnet, sleek roofline, wide tracks with exposed wheel arches giving it that wide stance and dynamic profile. At the front, you’ll find the Mercedes-Benz’s new family face compromising of flat headlamps, diamond radiator grille, fluid bumper design as well as strong bonnet domes and lines.
Its sleek silhouette is attributed to a combination of long, stretched entry line above the windows and frameless doors that’s uninterrupted to the C-pillar. The slightly building wheel arches were designed to fit wheel sizes measuring 16- to 19-inches.
The rear is where things get interesting. Where the W177 A-Class hatch’s taillamps were plain and dare we say, uninspiring, the CLA’s two-piece, narrow full LED taillamps with a 3D graphics suit the CLA’s emotive and sporty character perfectly.
Compared to the predecessor, the new CLA has grown longer, wider and sits slightly lower to the ground. It now measures 4,688 mm in length (+48 mm), 1,830 mm in width (+53 mm), 1,439 mm in height (-2 mm) and wheelbase has been stretched by 30 mm to 2,729 mm. The front and rear tracks have grown 63 mm and 55 mm respectively, giving the new car its wide stance.
Despite its wheelbase has grown by 30 mm, passenger leg room did not grow at all with front legroom measuring 1,062 mm (-1 mm) and rear legroom at 861 mm (+1 m). Elbow and shoulder room did, however, grow significantly to better accommodate occupants. Boot space, however, is now smaller by 10L to 460L compared to its predecessor.
Inside the CLA, the cabin is lifted straight from the new A-Class with its widescreen cockpit, turbine-style air vents, dual element dashboard new-generation multifunctional steering wheel and new touchpad design to operate the Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) infotainment system. The “Hey Mercedes” intelligent assistant has been further improved to better understand more complex queries and no longer gets confused by another passengers’ conversation.
Other options available on the CLA include sports seats, 64-colour ambient lighting, Head-up Display, navigation with augmented reality, MBUX Interior Assist, Energizing Package Plus, sunroof and more.
At launch, the CLA is presented with the CLA 250 variant, packing a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder pushing 225 hp and 350 Nm of twist mated to a 7G-DCT dual-clutch transmission. By May 2019, there will be a broad range of diesel and petrol engines available featuring manual or dual-clutch transmissions and 4MATIC all-wheel drive.
As standard, the CLA is equipped with Active Brake Assist and Active Lane Keeping Assist. It can also be optioned with advanced driver assistance systems from the S-Class such as Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC, Active Emergency Stop Assist, Active Lane Change Assist and PRE-SAFE PLUS.
Mercedes-Benz CLA 250 Edition 1