First Drive: new Mercedes CLA

MERCEDES HAS created an entirely new niche with the CLA, but is it any good? Well, think of it as a baby CLS and you won’t go far wrong. Merc has created an entirely new niche with the CLA - no-one else makes a four-door, coupe-esque saloon of this size.

MERCEDES HAS created an entirely new niche with the CLA, but is it any good? Well, think of it as a baby CLS and you won’t go far wrong. Merc has created an entirely new niche with the CLA - no-one else makes a four-door, coupe-esque saloon of this size.

Don’t I recognise it from somewhere else?

Probably. A near identical concept, called the Concept Style Coupe (CSC), was shown in 2012 and that whetted people’s appetites for this production version.

But there’s a snag. Not only was the Concept wider, it also sat on massive wheels - compared to it, the CLA doesn’t look anywhere near as purposeful.

Side-on, the CLA appears top-heavy because the wheels are lost in the arches. And the boot looks a bit droopy, like someone has bolted a saloon arse onto a hatch body, almost as an after-thought.

 

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