Review: Mercedes-Benz CLA200 Deserves To Be Your First German Car

The Audi A3 gives you subtlety but the Mercedes-Benz CLA200 will give you a panache that you are truly a star.

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Car and Bike
5 min read
Mercedes-Benz CLA 200. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)

In 2012, Mercedes-Benz showcased this beauty as a concept at the Beijing Auto Show. In 2013, they made it available as a production model and since then the CLA200 has all the oomph to make you drool over it.

Many people also consider the CLA200 as an A-Class with a boot, but if you look at the curves this one has to offer, it will make you fall in love with it every time.

We drove the Mercedes-Benz CLA200 petrol variant and here’s what we think about this compact luxury sedan.

The Looks

At 4630 mm the Mercedes-Benz CLA200 longer than its rival, Audi A3. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
At 4630 mm the Mercedes-Benz CLA200 longer than its rival, Audi A3. (Photo: The Quint)

The compact luxury sedan market is growing in India. Audi has the A3 and the three-pointed star has the CLA. BMW, however, is quite behind in the race, at least in India.

The CLA200 makes you fall in love with it from every angle. It has a face that’s similar to the A-Class and an aggressive grille that is futuristic and still reminds you of the classic Mercedes-Benz design.

The CLA200 has the flair with its curves while the Audi A3 looks like a box in front of it. From the inside, you get jet propeller-type air vents, a dual-tone dashboard and an over all premium fit and finish.

The 17-inch wheel design makes the Mercedes-Benz CLA200 look sporty. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
The 17-inch wheel design makes the Mercedes-Benz CLA200 look sporty. (Photo: The Quint)

The 17-inch wheel design makes it look more sporty than some high-end luxury sedans.

Overall, the CLA200 will remind you of the four-door coupe, the CLS from the German car maker. 

The Good

Mercedes-Benz CLA200 has a warm and welcoming cabin with attention to detail on the equipment inside. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
Mercedes-Benz CLA200 has a warm and welcoming cabin with attention to detail on the equipment inside. (Photo: The Quint)

At 4630 mm, it’s longer than its rival the Audi A3. The 1191 cc petrol engine produces 181 hp at 5500 RPM and a torque of 300 Nm. Despite being a petrol variant it gave us a decent fuel economy of 13.3km/l and the 7-speed automatic transmission is effortless.

Mercedes-Benz CLA200 (petrol) gave us a fuel economy of 13.3km/l. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
Mercedes-Benz CLA200 (petrol) gave us a fuel economy of 13.3km/l. (Photo: The Quint)

The steering is a little on the heavier side and that makes the driver feel in control all the time. And if you are adventurous enough put it in the sports mode, it’s bound to give you a bit of an adrenaline rush.

The 7-speed automatic transmission is effortless on the Mercedes-Benz CLA200. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
The 7-speed automatic transmission is effortless on the Mercedes-Benz CLA200. (Photo: The Quint)

Both city and highway driving are a breeze in this one. The CLA200 comes with an attention assist. The assist ensures driver and passenger safety by forcing you to take a break if you have been driving for a long time.

Mercedes-Benz CLA200’s  Attention Assist. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
Mercedes-Benz CLA200’s Attention Assist. (Photo: The Quint)

There are loads of goodies inside it as well like a panoramic sunroof that automatically closes when it rains, onboard web browsing via phone tethering, a navigation system, SD card slots for music and photos, parking sensors and a reverse camera.

High-resolution colour display with a screen diagonal of 17.8 cm with animations and 3D effects gives you a lot of information but it’s not retractable.

And to top it all you also get memory seats, for the driver as well as passengers.

Mercedes-Benz CLA200 has memory seats for both the front and back occupants of the car. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
Mercedes-Benz CLA200 has memory seats for both the front and back occupants of the car. (Photo: The Quint)

The Harman Kardon sound system delivers is great for all your entertainment needs inside the car. The 470 litres of boot space is also more than what you get on its rivals. However, the spare half-wheel takes up most of the space inside the boot.

Overall, it’s a complete compact sedan that deserves all the applause for its driving dynamics.

The Bad

The coupe-inspired design  makes the Mercedes-Benz CLA200 feel a little cramped on the inside. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
The coupe-inspired design makes the Mercedes-Benz CLA200 feel a little cramped on the inside. (Photo: The Quint)

The Mercedes-Benz CLA200 is a good looking compact luxury sedan but it doesn’t have enough leg space for the rear passenger. The car also has a stiff suspension that can make the ride a bit jerky.

The coupe-inspired design also makes the Mercedes-Benz CLA200 feel a little cramped from the inside, but the panoramic sunroof brings a bit of airiness inside the cabin.

The Rivals

Audi’s definitely got an advantage over Mercedes-Benz CLA200 when it comes to the pricing. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
Audi’s definitely got an advantage over Mercedes-Benz CLA200 when it comes to the pricing. (Photo: The Quint)

The Mercedes-Benz CLA 200 competes with the Audi A3 right now. Audi’s definitely got an advantage when it comes to the pricing.

But even if you buy the top end Audi A3 there are many features that are missing on it and the CLA 200 scores in this regard.

Anyone planning to buy their first compact sedan in India is left with these two choices and the CLA200 has an upper hand in terms of its looks, performance, and the overall package.

Verdict

At Rs 35 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi) the Mercedes-Benz CLA will make heads turn every time you drive it. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
At Rs 35 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi) the Mercedes-Benz CLA will make heads turn every time you drive it. (Photo: The Quint)

The Mercedes-Benz CLA200 deserves to be your first compact luxury German car purely because it has the driving dynamics for every kind of driver and it looks stunning.

At Rs 35 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi) the Mercedes-Benz CLA will make heads turn every time you drive it. The CLA200 is a complete sedan that will give you a luxurious driving experience.

The Audi A3 gives you subtlety, but the Mercedes-Benz CLA200 will give you a panache that you are truly a star.

Key Features: Mercedes-Benz CLA200 Petrol

Mercedes-Benz CLA 200. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
Mercedes-Benz CLA 200. (Photo: The Quint)
Snapshot
  • Engine: 1991 cc, Petrol - 2143 cc,
  • Power: 181 bhp @ 5500 RPM
  • Torque: 300nm @ 1200 RPM
  • Transmission: 7-speed Automatic
  • Length: 4630 mm
  • Width: 1777 mm
  • Height: 1432 mm
  • Wheel base: 2699 mm
  • Bi-xenon headlamps with dynamic headlamp range adjustment and integrated LED daytime running lamps.
  • Diamond radiator grille with pins in high-gloss black, silver-painted louvre and chrome inserts.
  • Cruise control with ‘SPEEDTRONIC’ variable speed limiter.
  • ECO start/stop function.
  • Electronic Stability Program (ESP).
  • ADAPTIVE BRAKE with Hill-Start Assist, priming and brake drying in the wet.
  • Anti-lock braking system (ABS).
  • ASSYST service interval indicator ATTENTION ASSIST.
  • Audible warning signal if front seat belts not fastened, lights not switched off, or parking brake left on.
  • Brake Assist (BAS) with brake servo assistance when emergency braking is detected.
  • Price: Rs 35 Lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi)

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