The all-new Mercedes-Benz A-Class has generated a lot of interest right here on AutoSpies.
com; however, at the end of the day -- now that the final product has been delivered -- does it live up to expectations?
Autocar is one of the first publications to write about its first drive impressions, let's see some of the highlights and if the Audi A3 and BMW 1-Series are going to be left running scared...
...But it is not the figures that come to mind on first acquaintance. It is the styling. The heavily structured design gives the new A-class an instantly recognisable appearance. It’s far more expressive than that of the 1-series and A3. However, glaring shut line unevenness, especially within the front end where the bonnet meets the fenders and around the top end of the grille, left us wondering if Mercedes had suddenly taken leave of its usual attention to quality. For a car described as being premium, the panel fit is very ordinary.
Inside, there’s a vastly different driving position to previous A-class models. It’s considerably lower, less upright and generally more comfortable. The high mounted dashboard shares its look with the current B-class; high on perceived quality, stylish and ergonomically sound. Close inspection reveals many carry over parts from other models, meaning it lacks the individuality of some rivals. It is still appealing, giving a classier feel than just about every rival...
Should I buy one?
Although the new A-class offers a radically different driving experience from its predecessor, it doesn’t set new class standards. It is well rounded and highly competent in areas that matter most, and will appeal to a much broader - and younger – audience than ever.
On first experience it doesn’t appear to offer the same heightened dynamic appeal of the BMW 1-series, nor does it ride with quite the same authority as the latest Audi A3 – at least on the optional sports suspension Mercedes-Benz fitted to our test cars.