The new Mercedes-Benz GLA gives the existing car a much-needed overhaul.
The new Mercedes-Benz GLA has been revealed at the 2020 Auto Expo. The new new generation updates the car and makes it better in every direction. Firstly the styling gets a major overhaul, falling in line with the sleeker-looking models of the current generation vehicles.
The headlamps are now slimmer and more modern. The taillights are from the current generation A-Class that is sold internationally. The bumpers have been revisioned with more fake vents, to enhance that sporty rugged feeling. From the side, not much has changed, apart from the bumpers, alloys and the blackened side cladding. The satin grey paintwork shows the body creases very well.
Dimensionally, the 2020 GLA is 4410 mm long, 2020 mm wide, 1611 mm in height, and has a wheelbase of 2729 mm. The car is slightly narrower and shorter than the old version. It makes it up by having a 30 mm longer wheelbase and a 46mm longer track. This is due to the new MFA-II platform that underpins this crossover.
Jump inside, and this is where the new version is truly miles ahead of the old version. With the A-Class and this, it’s clear that Mercedes is taking the premium entry-level market very seriously. The GLA 2020 ships with Mercedes’ MBUX system with voice commands. The MBUX system gets two digital displays under a single sheet of glass, upping the premium feel. It is very smooth to use, despite the omission of the perfectly intuitive scroll wheel for a trackpad.
That premium feel is further enhanced by the turbine AC vents. They have little rings of ambient lighting within them. Speaking of which, the ambient lighting comes with 64 colours and is completely customisable. The materials used are nothing short of premium. Overall the interior has become one of the biggest strengths for Mercedes with this product.
Mechanically the entry-level GLA will be powered by a 1.3-litre turbocharged petrol engine with a 7-speed DCT gearbox. It puts out 161 PS of power. The Mercedes GLA 220d will come with a 2.0-litre diesel engine with 190bhp. We could also get the GLA 35 AMG, powered by a 2.0-litre petrol engine putting out 306 HP. Expect the GLA 35 to be quite a splurge over the regular variants, if it comes.
With this generation of A-Class and GLA, Mercedes is showing that they are putting effort into this segment. The cars look and feel like a Mercedes should. Such a feeling could not be expressed with the old GLA. So this is a tremendous improvement over the last vehicle. The car is expected to launch around October. And it will rival the Volvo XC40, BMW X1, Audi Q3.