Tech

Mercedes-Benz A-Class L Saloon

Mercedes-Benz A-Class L Saloon

It follows a record 2017 for the brand's compact models - the outgoing A-Class and the B-Class, CLA, CLA Shooting Brake and GLA SUV collectively accounting for 620,000 units globally, with 60% of European customers coming from other brands.

It's understood Mercedes is planning to continue to the CLA, which is a swoopy four-door coupe based on the A-Class, while also offering a slightly more practical sedan.

In China, the A-Class will have Daimler's Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX infotainment system) with China's popular WeChat app integrated.

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When it goes on sale in China in the second half of this year, the A-Class Sedan will be powered by a relatively tiny 1.33-litre aluminum turbocharged four-cylinder, with two output levels - 134 hp and 161 hp. Expect 1.5-litre and 2.0-litre four-cylinder diesels for European markets. Both engines will be offered exclusively with a standard seven-speed dual clutch gearbox.

"With our Chinese customers' wishes and needs in mind, we developed the A?Class L Sedan for the local market, which is the first and only long wheelbase model in the premium compact auto segment", says Daimler's China head, Hubertus Troska. Mercedes says the main concern was rear passenger legroom (hence the longer wheelbase).

The navigation system display is also adapted specifically for the Chinese market and features augmented reality technology. The DB11 replaces a vehicle that was growing old on the vine, and it selectively uses components from partner Mercedes-Benz. Customers in Mainland China took delivery over 610,000 vehicles last year, more than ever in a single year (+25.9%). This features a 6cm longer wheelbase than the new A-Class hatchback, in line with Chinese-market demands. Will the greater practicality of the sedan's rear seat appeal to them?


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