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Updated Mercedes CLA checks-in
Mid-life facelift for Mercedes’s CLA range also sees a bump in price of up to $2999
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22 Aug 2016
By TUNG NGUYEN
MERCEDES-BENZ has introduced its updated CLA four-door coupe and wagon range to Australia, bringing a new look, more tech and standard equipment, but also raising prices by at least $1100 across the board.
The facelifted A-Class-based range now kicks off at $52,500 before on-roads for the CLA200 coupe, an increase of $1100 on the outgoing model, while its Shooting Brake counterpart wears a $54,000 sticker price – a $1600 jump.
Mercedes still offers a diesel engine option for CLA buyers, but has ditched the CLA200d in favour of the more powerful CLA220d priced at $53,900 for the coupe and $55,400 for the Shooting Brake, a respective $2000 and $2500 price increase on the outgoing oil burners.
The CLA250 Sport 4Matic gets a $2200 price hike to $67,600 for the coupe and $68,600 for the wagon, while the manic top-spec AMG CLA45 increases by $2999 to $92,215 for both versions.
Mercedes-Benz Australia/Pacific senior manager of public relations, product and corporate communications David McCarthy said the increase in price is simply a reflection in increased production costs and does not expect it to affect sales.
“We adjust prices regularly, it is called inflation. It reflects an increased cost to us,” he said. “We hedge currency, it reflects that from time to time, we get charged more.
“I don’t think there will be any impact (in sales), it’s not a huge amount and the cars are well-equipped, well-priced, and so price rises are sometimes unavoidable.”
For the bump in price, the CLA range receives a new front fascia, with redesigned bumper and diamond radiator grille, and an 8.0-inch infotainment system, with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, along with the already standard nine airbags, active brake assist, blind spot monitoring and parking assist.
The base CLA200 coupe and Shooting Brake are propelled by a 115kW/250Nm 1.6-litre turbocharged four-cylinder paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, but the coupe now gains LED headlights, digital radio, Dynamic Select driving modes, while the wagon gets the addition of keyless entry and start as standard.
Both CLA200 body styles return fuel economy figures of 5.7 litres per 100 kilometres.
Switching from the 200d to the 220d sees Mercedes’ only diesel in the range increase power from 100kW to 130kW and torque from 300Nm to 350Nm while also returning a better fuel economy figure of 4.2 litres per 100 kilometres compared with 4.3L/100km.
Mr McCarthy said the switch to the CLA 220d was an easy decision.
“Basically when you get an opportunity to upgrade the engine at very little cost, and I think there’s a better fuel economy outcome with this one too, we do it,” he said.
Like it’s recently refreshed A-Class sibling, the CLA250 Sport 4Matic sees a modest 5kW power boost to 160kW from its 2.0-litre turbo four-pot, with torque unchanged at 350Nm.
Power is fed to all four-wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic and fuel consumption is rated at 6.7L/100km.
Standard equipment on the CLA250 Sport 4Matic includes 18-inch AMG wheels, sports-tuned suspension, sunroof, sports seats with red highlights, heated front seats and Adaptive main beam Assist.
Moving to the top-spec AMG CLA45 sees performance spike to 280kW/475Nm from a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder, enough to propel the all-wheel-drive coupe and wagon from zero to 100 kilometres in 4.2 and 4.3 seconds respectively.
AMG models gain 19-inch wheels, AMG performance exhaust, upgraded brakes, sports seats, lane keep assist and Harmon Kardon sound system as standard.
Mercedes-Benz Australia/Pacific CEO and managing director Horst von Sanden said the updated CLA range will appeal to customers looking for a luxury car with unique aesthetics.
“Since their respective launches, the CLA Coupe and CLA Shooting Brake have helped to redefine public perception of our brand, and proven highly successful additions to the Mercedes-Benz line-up,” he said.
“The new models further enhance the extremely progressive and unmistakable design, while providing even greater value and technology for our customers.”
Mercedes has sold 2291 CLA coupes and wagons in the first seven months of the year, a 7.6 per cent increase over the 2129 it sold over the same period in 2015.
This places it behind its bigger C-Class stablemate (3808) and BMW 3 Series (2786) in the premium mid-size segment. Conversely, the CLA is ahead of Audi’s A4 (1552), Jaguar XE (1025) and Lexus IS (1023) in year-to-date sales.
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