About the 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class:
With the new, front-wheel-drive Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class, the proud German automaker is reaching down-market to capture younger buyers in the hopes of turning them into three-pointed-star loyalists. The new CLA250’s base price might start at just under $30,000, but there’s a reason for that. By the time you add equipment synonymous with luxury, you’re spending several thousand more. Still, for a youthful up-and-comer, getting a decently equipped Benz for little more than a loaded Honda Accord is compelling.
Mercedes sells the new 2014 CLA-Class as the CLA250 and the CLA45 AMG, and despite its four doors and traditional trunk, the automaker calls it a coupe rather than a sedan. In addition to a far more powerful engine and standard 4Matic all-wheel drive, the CLA45AMG adds a lengthy menu of go-faster performance hardware to the CLA, and commands a $17,550 premium over the standard CLA250.
To get an idea of what’s missing from a basic CLA250, consider that the following items are options: leather, dual-zone automatic climate control, a premium sound system, a navigation system, a reversing camera, and more. To get them, you need spend at least $6,170 extra.
Engines and Transmissions:
A turbocharged, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine is standard for both versions of the Mercedes CLA-Class, the one installed in the CLA45 AMG making a whole bunch more horsepower and torque.
In the CLA250, the engine generates 208 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and 258 lb.-ft. of torque from 1,250 rpm to 4,000 rpm. That’s good enough to scoot the CLA250 to 60 mph in 6.9 seconds, courtesy of a 7-speed Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT), an automated manual gearbox that powers the car’s front wheels. That’s right. This is a front-wheel-drive Benz. A 4Matic all-wheel-drive system is available as an option.
The CLA45 AMG is equipped with what Mercedes claims is the most powerful 4-cylinder production engine in the world. In this model, the 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder whips up 355 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 332 lb.-ft. of torque between 2,250 rpm and 5,000 rpm, making it the most powerful 4-cylinder production in the world. A 4Matic AWD system is standard, and the CLA45 AMG delivers 60 mph in 4.5 seconds.
Fuel Economy Ratings:
Based on official EPA fuel economy estimates for the 2014 Mercedes CLA-Class, this is a fuel-efficient vehicle, even in its most powerful format. The CLA250 is expected to return 30 mpg in combined driving. Add 4Matic AWD to this model, though, and that estimate drops to 27 mpg. The far more muscular CLA45 AMG is rated to return 26 mpg.
The 2014 Mercedes CLA-Class has not been subjected to crash testing as this summary is written, so no safety scores are available.
The optional Driver Assistance Package equips the CLA with an adaptive cruise control system, Collision Prevention Assist Plus, Blind Spot Assist, and Lane Keeping Assist. The Mbrace2 telematics system features Automatic Collision Notification and SOS/Emergency Call services, while Mercedes-Benz Apps provides access to Google, social media platforms, Internet radio, and more.
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