The Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class is a subcompact four-door its maker refers to as a coupe thanks to its sleek roofline. This stylish entry-level luxury model was redesigned into its second generation for 2020, and there are no changes for 2021.
Benz sells this car as the CLA 250, AMG CLA 35, and AMG CLA 45. All three use a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder engine tuned to add performance as you move through the lineup. A seven-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive are standard.
Mercedes-Benz fits the CLA 250’s exterior with 18-inch alloy wheels, a comfort suspension, LED headlights and taillights, heated/power-adjustable side mirrors, rain-sensing wipers, and heated windshield washers.
Inside the CLA 250’s cabin, you get power front seats with heat, artificial leather upholstery, a panoramic sunroof, automatic climate control, push-button engine start, the MBUX infotainment system with a 7.0-inch display and touchpad controller, a 7.0-inch driver info screen, and four USB-C ports.
AMG CLA 35 and CLA 45 trims add 10.25-inch infotainment and driver info displays, side mirrors with projectors, an upgraded transmission and sport drive modes, and CLA 45 also gets a performance-tuned AWD system.
CLA 250 offers a premium package of the two 10.25-inch screens, auto-dimming rearview and driver’s side mirrors, power-folding mirrors, blind spot assist, vehicle exit warning, passive keyless entry, a hands-free trunk, wireless smartphone charging, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
A navigation group adds that namesake feature, plus live traffic, augmented navigation video, and traffic sign assist.
The intelligent drive package bundles active and evasive steering assists, active braking with cross traffic function, forward collision warning with automatic braking, speed limit assist, blind spot and lane change assists, and cruise control with stop-and-go.
You can also add satellite radio, active parking assist, 360-degree camera views, a Burmester stereo, garage door remote, and head-up display as stand-alone extras.
AMG CLA 35 buyers can add an AMG driver’s package of 19-inch wheels, a Nappa-trimmed performance steering wheel, a three-stage adaptive suspension system, and AMG drive modes.
Finally, the AMG CLA 45 offers a track package with a steering wheel trimmed in Benz’s dinamica material, composite brakes, race and drift drive modes, and a higher top speed.
As of this writing, Mercedes-Benz hadn’t published fuel consumption estimates for either the 2020 or 2021 CLA-Class.
Mercedes-Benz faces the expected competition from the BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe and Audi’s S3. The Acura ILX meets the CLA’s levels of upscale equipment, but can’t quite compete on performance. Meanwhile, the Subaru WRX is sporty enough to keep up, but lacks luxury panache.
A new competitor for 2021 is the Mazda3, which moves upscale with optional AWD and a turbocharged engine.
This vehicle has not yet been reviewed
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