Mercedes-Benz really does love to tease, and now, we know why. It is because the top honcho of parent Daimler AG, chairman Dieter Zetsche, loves to do so. In fact, Zetsche was recently featured on a post at Daimler’s LinkedIn business network account, taking a selfie with a camouflaged version of the 2018 Mercedes-Benz A-Class. Yes, the 2018 Mercedes A-Class is finally coming and it is now being test-driven – as well as teased -- by Zetsche himself.
Teasing a new product isn’t actually the main part of Zetche’s job at Daimler. However, he can do as he pleases. Nonetheless, as Daimler’s chairman noted, it is part of his job to test drive new products like the next generation of the A Class. It is his job to make sure that a new model is good enough to pass the careful eyes of the company’s management team, and is ready for series production.
Confirming that the car that he was taking a picture with is the 2018 A-Class in a camouflaged form, Zetsche said in a LinkedIn post that Mercedes will be taking the wraps off the camouflaged A-Class in 2018. He called the new A-Class as special since it is a symbol of the rejuvenation of the Mercedes brand, which started when it introduced the current generation in 2012. He noted that since 2012, Mercedes has sold more than two million units of the A-Class.
According to Zetsche, Mercedes has made sure that all technologies in the A-Class were thoroughly test even between the test drives are started. He noted that digital prototypes were created and tested before the actual model was built, adding that virtual simulations, initial crash tests, aerodynamic assessments as well as suspension tests were also implemented.
Daimler’s chairman went on to disclose that the new A-Class also underwent testing at the company’s climatic wind tunnel near Stuttgart, Germany. This advanced wind tunnel could simulate any weather condition or climate situation. Whether it’s winter or a hot summer, as well as during hurricanes (up to 265 km/h), tropical rainfall or snowstorms – these can be re-created on the wind tunnel. The wind tunnel could also simulate varied temperatures, ranging from minus 40 to plus 60 degrees Celsius.
Daimler’s chairman also disclosed Mercedes’ “more ambitious plans” – eight new compact models, including the A-Class sedan. The next generation of these compact cars will be installed with more advanced assistance systems, thereby setting the cornerstone for the future of autonomous driving.
Ola Kallenius, chief of the Mercedes-Benz brand, recently disclosed the next generation of the premium carmaker’s front-wheel drive platform -- the Modular Front-wheel-drive Architecture 2 or MFA2 – will underpin eight new models. MFA2 is expected to underpin the next-gen A-Class hatchback, B-Class, CLA-Class four-door coupe, CLA-Class Shooting Brake and GLA-Class. Three all-new models will also be born from the new MFA2: A-Class sedan, A-Class sedan long-wheelbase and a GLB-Class off-road specialist.