Approximately three months after unveiling the long-wheelbase A-Class Sedan for China, Mercedes is kicking off the teaser campaign for the regular model bound to be sold globally. The first episode focuses on the aerodynamic efficiency of the sedan, which will have a drag coefficient of only 0.22. If that number sounds familiar, it’s because the first-ever A-Class Sedan will be just as sleek as the CLA in the 180 CDI BlueEfficiency guise – the current record holder.
Wait, isn’t the XL1 the most aerodynamic production car ever made? Yes and no. The ultra-frugal diesel hybrid has a drag coefficient of just 0.19, but we need to take into consideration that Volkswagen built only 250 units. That’s a far cry from making the radically styled two-seater a regular series production car, which the aforementioned CLA is and the A-Class Sedan will be once it will be launched by the end of this year.
It goes without saying that Mercedes had to spend a lot of time in the wind tunnel with the A-Class Sedan to achieve that number. For example, the front and rear wheel spoilers were tweaked to channel the air around the wheels, which themselves were aerodynamically optimized and even the tires had to be purpose-built. In some countries, the car will be available with an optional two-part shutter system located behind the radiator grille to lower the amount of airflow going through the engine bay.
To make the sedan as sleek as possible, Mercedes came up with a new sealing concept – like the sealing of the area around the headlights – and created an almost complete paneling of the car’s underbody. The A-Class Sedan was engineered in Sindelfingen, Germany where the company has a wind tunnel. It will be built nearby at the Rastatt factory located at a little over 50 miles away, but also in Aguascalientes, Mexico.
It will inherit the 2729-millimeter (107.4-inch) wheelbase of the hatchback, as well as the engines, safety kit, and technology. Mercedes promises the U.S.-bound A-Class Sedan will boast best-in-class rear headroom and will make use of the firm’s new MBUX infotainment system as seen in the five-door model.
Expect an official reveal to take place in the weeks to come.
World record defended: The new A-Class Sedan: none is more aerodynamic
Stuttgart. With a Cd value of 0.22 and a frontal area of 2.19 m², the new A-Class Sedan has the lowest drag of any production vehicle worldwide and thereby defends the original world record of the CLA Coupé.
Fresh wind for saving fuel: For three decades now, the aerodynamics engineers at Mercedes-Benz have been repeatedly setting new records. The world record is currently held by the new A-Class Sedan with a Cd value of 0.22 and a drag of less than 0.49 m2. With a Cd value from 0.25, the new A-Class hatchback, too, surpasses its already excellent predecessor (Cd value: from 0.26/frontal area: 2.20 m2).
The good aerodynamic properties make a key contribution to low fuel consumption under everyday conditions. The A-Class Sedan was optimised down to the smallest detail by a multiplicity of computation loops, CAE simulations (computer-aided engineering) and measurements in the wind tunnel in Sindelfingen. In addition to the outstanding exterior shape, there are many small measures that led to the new record: a sophisticated reduction of the frontal area despite significantly improved interior comfort dimensions, an extensive sealing concept (such as the sealing of the headlamp surroundings) as well as almost complete panelling of the underbody, which includes the engine bay, main floorpan, parts of the rear axle and the diffuser.
The front and rear wheel spoilers were optimised specifically to route the air around the wheels as efficiently as possible. The rims and tyres also underwent aerodynamic fine-tuning. Depending on the market, an optional two-part shutter system behind the radiator grille is available, which minimises the airflow through the engine bay.
The A-Class Saloon will launch at the end of 2018. The four-door notchback has the wheelbase of the hatchback (2729 millimetres) as well as the proportions of a dynamic and yet compact saloon with short overhangs at front and rear. It is at the top of its segment with regard to rear headroom. In addition, the saloon model has the familiar A-Class virtues. These include modern, efficient engines, a high level of safety thanks to state-of-the-art driving assistance systems with S-Class functions, and the intuitively operated and learning MBUX – Mercedes-Benz User Experience infotainment system.
The new streamlined A-Class Saloon will be built in Aguascalientes, Mexico, and Rastatt, Germany; it was developed in Sindelfingen, Germany.