#10 Mercedes-Benz CLA – Stunningly designed and compact

You’ve probably heard the expression “You’ve got to start somewhere.” Well, for car buyers lusting after an affordable car with a three-pointed star on the grille, that somewhere could very well be the compact Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class saloon. On the basis of styling alone, the CLA-Class doesn’t look entry-level: Its sleek “four-door coupe” silhouette is reminiscent of Mercedes’ significantly more expensive CLS model.
Mercedes-Benz CLA 

The interplay between concave and convex surfaces is visible on every angle of the Mercedes-Benz CLA’s stylish coupe design. The overall design of the Mercedes-Benz CLA gives it drag coefficients (Cd) rating of 0.22. That, ladies and gentlemen, makes the CLA the most aerodynamic production car to date. A large diamond radiator grille, dynamic light modules and LED’s behind the headlamps are neatly packed to give the car’s front a ‘flare effect’.

Most aerodynamic production car 

Three prominent lines on the side help highlight the saloon’s CLS DNA link. Another characteristic borrowed from its bigger sibling is the gently sloping roof contour and the pronounced curvature of the rear window. The taillights are framed by the muscular lines of the shoulders which extend into the rear end. The horizontal orientation of the lights emphasise the rear’s aesthetic look. A large black rear diffuser is visible at the rear. The soundtrack from the power units comes out from two exhaust pipes located at each end of the diffuser.

Rear seats 

Each Mercedes-Benz CLA comes equipped with thrilling and economic power units. The Mercedes-Benz CLA 200 with the same displacement of 1.6-litre develops 115 kW (156 hp) and a maximum torque of 250 Nm, which is likewise available from 1250 to 4000 rpm. It sprints from zero to 100 km/h in 8.6 seconds and has a top speed of 230km/h, but is happy with an average 5.5-litre/100 km of fuel.

Power unit 

The Mercedes-Benz CLA 250 is powered by the top engine variant with a displacement of 2.0-litre. The power plant develops 155 kW (211 hp) and a maximum torque of 350 Nm from 1200 to 4000 rpm. Performance is at sports car level, with acceleration from zero to 100 km/h in 6.7 seconds and a top speed of 240 km/h. Nonetheless it has the best fuel consumption in this class at 6.1-litres/100 km. The 7G-DCT dual clutch transmission and the six-speed manual transmission enable a driving style that is both comfortable and dynamic.

Sporty seats 

The chassis of the CLA features a McPherson front axle and an independent multilink rear suspension. All Mercedes-Benz CLAs come with an electromechanical Direct Steer power steering system. The steering system offers impressive feedback to the driver and also helps boost overall fuel efficiency. The CLA is also available with a new variant of Mercedes-Benz’s 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive system.


The exterior’s progressive, sporty appearance is continued inside the vehicle. A selection of high-quality materials and the available combinations of materials give the interior a posh feel. All trim surfaces are galvanised, resulting in a metallic finish. The instrument panel incorporates five round vents. A free-standing display screen features a black piano-lacquer-look front panel and a flush-fitting silver frame. The Mercedes-Benz CLA is fitted with integral seats in the front and rear, underscoring its sporty character. The rear seats have room for three occupants. Coloured contrasting stitching is also available, according to the selected interior appointment options.
Design influenced by the CLS 


The Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class exists for one simple reason: A great many consumers desire the elegance and prestige associated with the Mercedes brand, but simply can’t afford the high price of admission. The C-Class saloon has long been the company’s entry-level model, but its price is somewhat steep for many. However with the Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class one can easily join the three pointed star league with a stylish, compact and economical saloon.