Mercedes-Benz CLA 4-door coupe is targeted at younger drivers

2019 Mercedes Benz CLA

Like it or not, the curvy four-door "coupe" introduced in 2013 became the banner for Mercedes-Benz entry-level luxury in the U.S. More than 750,000 CLA models were sold worldwide, including almost 150,000 in the U.S. -the small vehicle even made its way into car-sharing services in some cities. It was never as stylish as it set out to be, though, and instead of being a Mercedes that happened to be cheap, it was more like a cheap auto that happened to have a Mercedes badge.

Showcased at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the second generation Mercedes-Benz CLA Coupe is, according to our honest opinion, looking great.

New CLA gets similar design cues as new CLS, making it more attractive than before. MBUX debuted at CES 2018 and we have since seen it used on the Mercedes-Benz A Class and B Class models since and it is Mercedes-Benz flagship development. The smoother body helps the CLA to look more expensive than it really is, and the aerodynamics have been improved.

Sitting 4,688mm long and 1,830mm wide, the new CLA is 48mm longer and 53mm wider than its predecessor, and its wheelbase is 30mm longer at 2,729mm. Mercedes also notes that handling should be further improved over the old CLA-Class thanks to a lower center of gravity and front and rear tracks that are wider by 2.5 and 2.2 inches respectively.

The Mercedes-Benz CLA is back, despite MB's new A-Class sort of filling the entry-level four-door gap in the lineup. That's 33 horses and 37 lb-ft more than the A220 makes (and a 13-hp bump over the current CLA250).

The new CLA-Class will available with either front-or all-wheel-drive, and both come with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

The Mercedes Benz CLA is based on the A Class hatch
The Mercedes Benz CLA is based on the A Class hatch

The company will introduce in over 10 new products, including an array of products from the performance brand AMG, this year.

Underneath, the CLA Class uses the same technology as the A Class.

The new CLA-Class's interior appears to be lifted right out of the A-Class, with two free-standing, monolithic screens for instrumentation and infotainment. In US market versions initially, the "Hey Mercedes" voice assistant can apparently handle more complex queries, even something like "Which child-friendly Asian restaurants are nearby which are neither Chinese nor Japanese?", as well as complex questions about sport, share prices and so on.

A decoupled multi-link rear axle will be offered, with active adaptive damping available as an option.

In the new Mercedes-Benz CLA Class, the MBUX experience is expanded. For those who want a fashion-forward compact four-door, the new CLA finally seems to have hit the mark.

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