CLA or A-Class, which do you prefer?
After being revealed in China, albeit, in its long wheelbase form, the A-Class Sedan is set to be the most affordable Mercedes that the U.S. market will ever have. It looks really good in its Chinese version, which makes us think how lucky those people from the east are.
However, seeing the rendering of the 2020 CLA makes our hearts stop, as it’s almost as good-looking as the A-Class Sedan, only sleeker and more pleasing to our critical eyes. And yes, it’s bound to enter the U.S. by 2019, a year later after the confirmed launch of the first-ever A-Class Sedan this year.
With the A-Class Sedan entering the U.S. soil, it will be slotted below the CLA, which is rumored to be made fancier to suit the more upmarket car buyers. After all, the CLA is higher than the A-Class, so it should be better. The distinction in their individual offerings will also help Mercedes dictate which type of buyer will take which. In simpler terms, it’s a solution for those two nameplates not to cannibalize their corresponding markets.
The similarities between the A-Class Sedan and CLA are inevitable, as both cars (and the not-U.S.-bound A-Class Hatchback) share the same platform. These vehicles will also have the same dashboard design, featuring Mercedes’ stylishly new MBUX infotainment system that has a dual 12.3-inch digital screen layout in the high-end versions.
The problem now lies within the buyers, as the two cars look almost exactly alike. The only difference would be the CLA’s lower roofline, which Mercedes would like to call a four-door coupe. We tend to disagree with the brand because it is essentially still a sedan, only leaning more towards a fastback shape.
As with the engine, the CLA is to be powered by an array of turbocharged four-cylinder engine, with the range-topper getting a 2.0-liter mill that can produce more than 400 horsepower. On the other hand, the A-Class Sedan will have a less powerful power plant.
So, yes, if you have the money, it’s better to wait for the 2020 CLA which looks to be a better sedan option right now.