Saloon version of latest A-Class will compete with Audi A3 Saloon for class honours
Mercedes-Benz is now taking orders for the new A-Class Saloon, with prices starting from £27,875 and first deliveries due in early 2019.
Two trim levels will be offered at launch, with the UK starting price applying to entry-level Sport. Prices for AMG Line, which comes with AMG bodystyling, start at £28,875.
At launch, there will be two engines on sale: the 1.5-litre diesel A180d and 1.3-litre petrol A200. The A180d produces 114bhp and 184lb ft of torque, allowing the car to sprint from 0-62mph in 10.5sec, while top speed is 125mph. The A200 163bhp and 184lb ft of torque. The line-up is expected be expand shortly after the new four-door’s introduction with a more powerful, turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol unit producing 188bhp.
A seven-speed dual clutch automatic transmission is standard across all models.
The A-Class Saloon is one of eight new compact models planned by the German car maker, including the latest A-Class hatchback, successors to the existing B-Class, CLA, CLA Shooting Brake and GLA, as well a new compact SUV that’s likely to be named the GLB and a yet-to-be-confirmed model.
Inside, the A-Class Saloon adopts the same high-quality dashboard and advanced infotainment functions as its hatchback sibling, including Mercedes’ new MBUX operating system that introduces touchscreen control, conversational speech recognition and the ability for two users to connect simultaneously.
The sixth member of Mercedes’ compact car line-up, which goes under the internal codename Z177, draws heavily on the earlier Concept A saloon unveiled at last year’s Shanghai motor show, with an appearance that combines the distinctive front-end styling of the recently introduced fourth-generation A-Class hatchback with a rear-end reminiscent of the latest third-generation CLS.
Although the A-Class Saloon that’s sold in China, or the A-Class L Saloon as it is officially named, has a 60mm longer wheelbase than the UK model, officials confirmed that the two variants boast the same styling.
“They’re the same model but in different lengths. The added length of the Chinese version is concentrated wholly within the rear door, which is longer than that of the A-Class Saloon to be sold in other world markets to ease entry to the rear,” Mercedes’ chief design officer, Gorden Wagener, revealed to Autocar.
At 4609mm in length, 1796mm in width and 1460mm in height, the Chinese version of the A-Class Saloon is 77mm shorter, 14mm narrower and 18mm higher than the existing standard-wheelbase C-Class Saloon as sold in the UK.
It also rides on a wheelbase that is just 51mm shorter than the standard-wheelbase C-Class at 2789mm, with wheels that vary in diameter between 16in and 19in.
As well as the shorter wheelbase, the A-Class Saloon sold in other markets has a length of 4549mm long, making it 91mm longer than the A3 Saloon.
For the Chinese version, boot capacity is put at 420 litres — five litres less than that offered by the A3 Saloon.
Chinese versions of the A-Class Saloon will be produced at Beijing Benz Automotive, a joint venture between Beijing Automotive Industry Corporation and Mercedes parent Daimler.