- Five models include AMG performance unit
- New diesel engine joins ranks
- Mid-life facelift, revised interior
The sporty, expressive design of the now five-model Mercedes CLA range has been further honed with a facelift involving new bumpers, a diamond radiator grille in black as standard and new light-alloy wheels and a new engine.
The interior also benefits from a number of enhancements, among them new seat covers and trim parts and chromed controls. Diode high-performance headlights, hands-free access and further possibilities for integrating smartphones into the control system are other options that , the automaker says, enhance safety and comfort.
An addition to the range is the efficient CLA 200d with an output of 100kW and CO2 emissions as low as 114g/km. – just at a time, however, when a survey in Britain has shown fast-falling demand for diesel power.
The Mercedes-AMG CLA 45 4Matic Coupé, AMG says, has been given even more dynamic appearance and an upgraded cabin; its engine can make 280kW/475Nm so “is among the most powerful vehicle in its segment”.
“It’s also quite unmistakable.” No argument there – just look at our images.
Each unit now has a black radiator grille and new front bumper with a silver, black or chromed trim strip. The rear bumper is optionally available with a panel incorporating a trim strip in chrome or black between the tailpipes, whose trim panels are in turn now flush with the bumper.
The range of 18″ wheel rims has been extended to five, one of them with a new twin-spoked design on five radial arms in a choice of polished black or grey.
The existing range of autonomous crash prevention and protection systems remains from the original CLA, as do Dynamic Select – Merc’s way of controlling or adjusting the engine – and the 12-colour cabin ambient lighting.
Fresh for the cabin, however, are new seat covers and trim parts and chromed controls with “the highlight” a free-standing 20cm media display with a new-style glass cover as an option for the audio system.
Revised dials are “easier to read” thanks to red needles.
NEW TRIM ELEMENTS
Meticulous attention to detail is also evident from the silver chrome finish to the controls and to the fascia and switches in the doors for the electrically adjustable seats, as well as from the chrome surround to the stowage compartment in the centre console.
New trim elements in sail-look finish, matt black ash wood (in conjunction with Exclusive package), black Dinamica microfibre (optional with AMG Line) or aluminium with honeycomb grain serve ad style to the cabin.
There’s also a revised range of seat covers: variously leather or a combination of Artico faux leather mixed with fabric. Blue or grey top-stitching is possible.
High-performance diode headlights are standard on the CLA 250 Sport and CLA 45, their illumination, Mercedes says “closer to that of daylight than xenon”. Low beams use diode projection tech, ancillary lights fibre optics.
THREE-LEVEL TAIL LIGHTS
Hidden benefit: unless damaged, there will be no need, for the life of the car, to replace any of the light-emitting diodes.
For the first time of which The Corner is aware the tail illumination has three levels of intensity according to situation – day, night and parked. The AMG Line has been amended to accept a tow-ball assembly.
And the best bits… the engines.
New to the CLA is a two-litre diesel capable of 100kW/300Nm, the basic model with a manual gearbox – a rarity on Mercedes products – and with the potential for a 4.4 litre/100 km fuel burn.
Top speed, depending on model, is variously above 200km/h, other models have a seven-speed double-clutch autobox.
MERCEDES CLA PRICES
CLA 200 – R449 900
CLA 200d – R481 900
CLA 220d – R519 900
CLA 250 Sport 4MATIC – R631 900
Mercedes-AMG CLA 45 4MATIC – R832 900