8/26/15

Mercedes-Benz GLA250: Notes on a Drive



Luxury crossovers here, luxury SUVs there…   All you see any more are luxury crossovers and SUVs..!

Well…   maybe not…
It sure seems like it though.  The luxury SUV/crossover market may be the hottest segment in the automotive realm.  All the higher-end marques are building them.  Even the likes of Lamborghini and Bentley are getting in to the game. 

Today we are going to visit the entry-level side of this world.  The place where the Audi Q3, BMW X1 and Lexus NX roam.  Today’s focus:  the Mercedes-Benz GLA250.
Built off the same platform as the diminutive CLA sedan, the GLA is part of that concerted push to appeal to a younger, more active demographic.  Both interior and exterior design have that softer design language seen in all recent Mercedes vehicles. 

The base engine in the GLA250, shared with the CLA counterpart, is a turbocharged inline 4-cylinder motor with 208-horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque along with a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.  Enough grunt to scoot the mini-ute to 60 mph in 7.2 seconds, according to the Benz team.  Safety features include a 10-way airbag system, collision prevention assist plus and more...  Typical of Mercedes.  4-Matic all-wheel drive is also available for a $2,000.00 surcharge. 
So how does this cute-ute drive, you ask?  A bit like Mercedes light, but Mercedes nonetheless.  You detect a smidge less of that vault-like solidity compared to the upper model ranges, but the MB DNA is still certainly present.  The 4-cylinder motor has plenty of pep for daily use.  If you want to tear up the tarmac, pony up for the substantially more expensive AMG version.  Ergonomics are good and for the vehicle size, utility is decent as well.  The driving position had plenty of adjustability and the view outside was not noticeably constrictive. 

My bottom line is that there is value to be had here.  Keep your options reasonable and you end up with a mini-ute with the Mercedes caché and plenty of utility for an excellent all-around daily driver.
Well done…!




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