Our spies are telling us the test vehicle might have had wider tracks.
Due to popular demand, crossovers and SUVs come in just about all sizes you can imagine. Mercedes has plenty of them in its ever growing range to satisfy a growing request from people in the market for a vehicle with a higher ground clearance and willing to pay the premium the comes with that. The GLA is the smallest crossover to wear the three-pointed star badge and here we see it while cold-weather testing to prepare for a second generation, even though the current model was facelifted just this month.
Although you can’t really tell by looking at these shots, the man with the spy camera says the test vehicle seemed to have slightly wider tracks. We will know for sure most likely later this year when Mercedes will come out with more evolved prototypes as opposed to this one, which is likely a mash-up of the existing GLA and the new one.
Hopefully the second generation will bring a bit more differentiation between the A-Class and its crossover counterpart seeing as how the latter can be described as a hatchback on stilts. The two models will continue to share the Modular Front-Wheel-Drive Architecture (MFA), but this time around it’s going to be the second generation expected to cut some fat thanks to a more extensive use of lightweight materials. Even though it will go on a diet, the new GLA will likely be a tad longer and wider to free up more space inside the cabin.
If you’re after efficiency, Mercedes is likely working on a plug-in hybrid version, but that might not come from day one. It’s the same story with the range topper, as the GLA 45 will be out after the introduction of the regular model. When it will arrive, it’s going to pack at least 400 horsepower from what will probably be an evolution of the turbocharged 2.0-liter gasoline engine.
The words “GLA Coupe” briefly appeared in a 2017 roadmap published by Mercedes last year, but the timetable was updated and the model was removed. While that must’ve been an honest mistake, perhaps it was a sign the GLA will receive the “coupe” treatment in the same vein as its bigger brothers, the GLC and GLE.
Should you find the GLA too small for your needs, it is believed the Germans are working on a GLB to slot between the GLA and the GLC. Some say it will arrive towards the end of the decade and will take the shape of a mini G-Class, meaning that it will have a more rugged appearance.
Meanwhile, the new A-Class hatchback is expected to hit the market at some point next year, with the GLA to follow in 2019.