Mercedes-Benz confirms CLA compact four-door coupe

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 30, 2012

A coupe-styled compact premium car will be produced along with the B-class model at Mercedes-Benz’s new factory. CLA is the name of this four-door sporty sedan. It’s likely to be displayed this April at the Beijing Auto Show. With this sedan, it enters a niche for coupe-styled four-door sedans such as the A7 and BMW with the 6 Series Gran Coupe.

Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche said the automaker will enhance the profitability of its compact cars by widening the lineup from two models - the A and B class - to five cars and building significantly higher volumes. Mercedes is planning to invest 1.4 billion euros ($1.9 billion) to build a new generation of compact premium cars in cars in Hungary, Germany and China.

The Kecskemet plant was built with an investment of 800 million euros. Meanwhile, the Rastatt plant was built with an investment of 600 million euros. IHS AutomotiveDaimler said when combined, the Kecskemet and Rastatt plants offer an estimated capacity of about 450,000 vehicles -- equivalent to 35% of Mercedes car sales this year.

According to press reports, CLA output will only begin at the end of this year. Production of the car will start at the end of the year and it will arrive in showrooms early next year.

Since the November launch in Europe, the automaker has received over 100,000 orders for the B class. The B class is not produced new Hungary plant, as well as at Rastatt. The new A class, built in Rastatt, will go on sale in Europe in September and is scheduled to arrive in the U.S. in 2014.

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