Mercedes has now revealed the Mercedes-Benz GLA aimed at rivalling the Audi Q3, BMW X1 and the Range Rover Evoque mixing excellent practicality along with Mercedes great 4MATIC capability. At 4,717 millimetres in length and 1,804 millimetres wide the GLA is highly maneuverable around town with four wheel drive and off road specification including all-round body cladding and an under ride guard the GLA can cope with sandy or loose surfaces and sharp gradients on and off country roads.
There is a range of four cylinder petrol and diesel engines available in the GLA with the option of either front or four wheel drive. The entry model GLA200 front wheel drive vehicle has the option of a 1.6 litre Turbo Charged petrol engine producing 154bhp and a 1.8 litre Turbo Diesel unit tipped to be the most frugal engine in the range? producing 134bhp? with and average mpg of 65.7, and CO2 emissions of 114g/km. Engines available for the 4MATIC include a 2.1 litre Turbo Diesel producing 168bhp and a 2.0 litre Turbo Charged petrol unit in the top of the range GLA250.
All front wheel drive models come with a six speed manual gearbox as standard with a seven speed auto box standard across all the 4MATIC models, available as an optional upgrade on front wheel variants. The 4MATIC four wheel drive system automatically controls the balance of torque going to the rear wheels when driving conditions require it, automatically defaulting to front wheel drive under normal driving conditions.
Performance wise the top performer currently in the range is the GLA 250 4MATIC giving a 0-62mph time of 6.5 seconds and a top speed of 145mph. No AMG model has been announced so far but is expected to follow in the not so long future, and will probably use the A45 AMGS’s 335bhp turbo four unit with a 0-60 time of around five seconds.
Inside the cabin seats five people with the rear three seats able to be reclined as well as folded flat to increase boot space to 836 litres from the 421 litres when the seats are flat. The driving position is much higher than the A-Class’s 276mm raising up to 549mm in the GLA with the actual cabin design immediately recogisable from the A-Class, B-Class and CLA with the three circular air-vents, infotainment screen (which displays real-time all wheel drive transmission information), centre console and instruments all carried over.
Safety features are high up on the list of specification with drowsiness detection Attention Assist, Collision Prevention Assist (CPA) and an even more advanced CPA+ system that in combination with the option Cruise control, gives automatic breaking up to speeds of 124mph.
Other specification options include iPhone connection via infotainment along with internet connectivity integrated with apps for Facebook and twitter and Google street-view navigation.
The Mercedes GLA is due to go on sale in November 2013 in the UK, with first deliveries expected for the first quarter of 2014.
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