Mercedes-Benz unveiled its new A-class model line, all targeted at the US market. The redesigned A class five-door hatchback, already the third generation, also comes in coupe and wagon variants as well as a crossover-like vehicle. All models will be marketed in the US except for one. Mercedes is planning to produce a three-door hatchback, which might not land in American soil.
Slated to arrive in 2014, the third-generation A class models are touted to be the smallest Mercedes cars ever sold in the United States. European drivers do not have to wait that long though; since they can grab any of the A class models this fall.
This is the first time Mercedes will market the A class in the US, since the situation back then would prove non-profitable for the first and second generation models.
This time, it is different though: higher gasoline prices, tough fuel economy regulations and changing customer preferences convinced Mercedes executives and U.S. dealers to finally market the A class to the US, expecting sales to exceed 15,000 annually.
BMW is already selling a similar-size model in the US, the 1 series, but the sales figures were not good. US Sales for 1 series were down 33% in 2011 to just 8,832 units.
And for the first two months of the year, sales were down 25%. Not good! With regards to the A-class five-door hatchback, the closest competitor it might have is the 2012 Ford Fiesta five-door hatchback. In terms of length and width, the A class and the Fiesta are very close.