FWD Mercedes-Benz CLA250 sedan gets mixed reviews

Article by Anita Panait, on November 13, 2013

Mercedes-Benz, as a luxury carmaker, typically prices its products at a premium. That could be the reason why its new entry-level CLA sedan front-wheel-drive, which is offered at less than $30,000, excluding destination charges, has raised some differing remarks among reviewers. With its low price and front-wheel-drive configuration, reviewers have voiced their remarks on whether the CLA sedan is really a Mercedes.

For instance, Edmunds.com said that even among rwd Mercedes owners, it is hard to tell if the 2014 Mercedes CLA250 is front-wheel drive, since it accelerates and steers with the precision of more elite models.

Consumer Reports came up with a harsher review, saying the CLA250 is not a smooth-riding Mercedes-Benz vehicle. It said that CLA250 car “feels brittle on some impacts,” making the ride stiff. It added that the CLA has sacrificed cabin quietness.

It noted that while day-to-day handling is decent, the CLA falls short of real agility. AutoWeek is more positive in its review, saying that the car is “as stable and flat as a freshly fried kartoffelpuffer.” It noted that roll, dive and squat for the CLA are controlled better than anything else in the class.

Autoblog, meanwhile, said that improvements can be made in some areas to make the non-AMG CLA “a knockout hit” in the sedan segment. It suggested a more inclusive suspension strategy, improvement of the feel of the electromechanical steering and Direct Steer, and further refinement of the 7G DCT.

Wall Street Journal praised the CLA’s CLA45 AMG 4MATIC engine. It remarked that the single, twin-scroll turbocharger provides CLA’s four-cylinder V8-like torque and flexibility.

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