The CLA is a four-door compact executive saloon from Mercedes-Benz, which delivers the pleasing shape, premium-quality interior and vigorous performance you would expect from the marque – along with extraordinarily low fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.
The 2.1 litre turbodiesel CLA 220 CDI engine is capable of combined fuel economy of 62.8mpg, with carbon output a mere 117g/km – exempting buyers from road tax in the first year of ownership and making them liable for a modest £30 levy in subsequent years. At the same time, thispowertrain's ample reserves of torque enables it to reach 62mph from a standing start in just 8.2 seconds. The CLA 180 petrol is no mean performer either, with a 0-62mph acceleration time of 9.3 seconds and fuel economy/CO2 figures of 50.4mpg and 130g/km. In addition, the new CLA 45 AMG, available from September 2013, is the second AMG compact carto be launched and, thanks to its AMG 4MATIC all-wheel drive, is capable of reaching 0-62mph in just 4.6 seconds.
The profile of the CLA is unmistakably Mercedes-Benz – yet at the same time highly distinctive, due to such design cues as its diamond-shaped mesh grille, the powerdomes of the bonnet, the deeply scalloped sides and the twin exhausts. The car's low, tapered look is no optical illusion – a drag coefficient of just 0.22 makes it the most aerodynamic vehicle in its class or any other.
Drivers can opt for Sport or AMG Sport model lines, the latter featuring muscular AMG bodystyling and lowered sports suspension. Both offer generous standard equipment, ranging from sports seats to advanced safety technologies such as Collision Prevention Assist.
Inside the CLA, a supportive driving position and the easily intelligible instrument dials and infotainment system allows you to concentrate on your drive, aided by the choice of two chassis setups (Comfort and Sport).