The world is evolving at a staggering pace. Numerous entrepreneurs have become successful at a much younger age than those who struck it rich a generation and half ago. The youth market is now wealthier, more financially independent, and more aggressive than the young ones of the previous two decades. All these were not lost on Mercedes-Benz, the German luxury car brand. If the top-of-the-line S-Class was meant for the more mature and sedate executives, then the C-Class was meant for the hip and dynamic movers and shakers who play by their own rules.
It was with this motif, “Play By Your Rules”, that Auto Nation Group (ANG), the importer and distributor of Mercedes-Benz automobiles in the Philippines, unveiled the new Mercedes-Benz CLA at the Versus Barcade in Bonifacio Global City. The hip venue, casual wear, and relaxed atmosphere best characterized the fun persona of the CLA, which is known for its exciting and sporty design. The second-generation CLA now features a sleeker, sportier and more high-tech character from its emotional exterior design to its comfortable interior to its improved MBUX system.
“As a four-door coupé, the new CLA intrigues with its puristic, seductive profile and brings the design DNA of ‘sensual purity’ to a new level. It is compelling for its perfect proportions, which are very close to the initial design sketches: a long, stretched bonnet, a compact greenhouse, a wide track with flared wheel arches and our typical GT rear end with a pronounced ‘Coke-bottle’ shoulder,” says Gorden Wagener, Chief Design Officer of Daimler AG.
In the Mercedes-Benz front-wheel-drive (FWD) family, the new CLA possesses the most exciting exterior with its coupé and sporty design, making it the most emotive vehicle in its class. The design underlines the coupé character with its stretched form and design elements such as the bonnet with power domes. With this, it does justice to its predecessor’s status as a design icon.
The new CLA sports LED high-performance headlamps with daylight running lamps, which complements the low-slung bonnet and the diamond grill – all of which create the vehicle’s sporty face, which has clear echoes of classic Mercedes-Benz sports cars. The new narrow-designed tail lamps and the number plate housed in the bumper on the rear emphasize the width of the new CLA.
The car thus appears flatter and sportier and has an especially good presence on the road with its 18-inch multi-spoke light alloy wheels. The combination of the long, stretched entry line above the windows and frameless doors give the new CLA its unmistakable sporty and elegant character.
Inside the new CLA, all elements are arranged according to the overarching design themes of “high tech” and “youthful avant-garde” from the leather multi-function steering wheel and new touchpad to the Artico-leather seats and other design enhancements in the dashboard. The driver’s seat can be electrically adjusted with three memory functions.
The new CLA has tangibly more space at various spots in the interior. The front headroom has increased by 17 mm and elbow room by 35 mm. Thanks to a wider opening (+262 mm), the boot compartment is now more convenient to load unto than the predecessor model. For more space and storage, the new CLA offers comfortable seats with seat cushions adjustable for depth and angle, with a 40:20:40 split-folding rear seat backrest.
Mercedes-Benz User Experience
As seen in the latest models of the A-Class and the GLE, the new CLA showcases the latest generation of the Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) infotainment system with two 7-inch digital screens for the instrument cluster and the media display.
At the heart of the MBUX system is a highly intelligent virtual assistant activated by pressing a button in the steering wheel or by simply saying “Hey Mercedes” from anywhere in the cabin. It caters to voice commands to attend to infotainment functions such as destination input, phone call, music selection, and climate control. MBUX comes with a natural speech recognition program that helps it to recognize and understand nearly all sentences from the fields of multimedia and vehicle operation. The infotainment system also offers seamless Apple Carplay smartphone integration for a more hands-free driving experience.
The new CLA delivers power and performance with its inline four-cylinder engine that produces 136 horsepower and 200 Newton-meters of torque. Coupled to a 7G-DCT 7-speed dual-clutch transmission, the powerplant delivers smooth, reliable and efficient performance. To further enhance the driving experience, the new CLA comes equipped with Dynamic Select that allows the driver to shift between various driving modes that suit their driving style, the weather, and road conditions. The CLA is also equipped with a comfort suspension package and direct steering assist.
Safety is a priority with the new CLA, helping to give peace of mind to its driver and passengers. Included in its roster of driver-assist and safety features are Active Parking Assist with rear-view camera, Active Brake Assist, Adaptive brake lights, Anti-lock braking system (ABS), Electronic Stability Program (EPS), Acceleration Skid Control, and Hill-Start Assist among others. It’s also equipped with a Pedestrian Protection Active bonnet as well as multiple airbags for the driver and front passenger including windowbags and kneebag for the driver.
Pricing and Colors
There’s initially one variant available in the country, the Mercedes-Benz CLA 180 Progressive, but it comes in a variety of paint finishes, namely Polar White, Digital White, Night Black, Cosmos Black, Mountain Gray, Mojave Silver, Denim Blue, Sun Yellow, and Jupiter Red.
Offered at a price point of P3,190,000, the new Mercedes-Benz CLA 180 Progressive is now available for booking and test drive at all Mercedes-Benz dealers nationwide.