The Mercedes A Class

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After a long wait,the all new affordable Compact luxury Car from Mercedes,the 2012 Mercedes A Class has now arrived in India.Mercedes-Benz India launched the highly awaited A-Class in Mumbai this June, in continuation to its product offensive for 2013.

The A-class,Super-mini,now introduced as a family car was first introduced in 1997(W168),the second generation model (W169) appeared in late 2004, and the all-new generation model W176 launched in late 2012 all over.The A Class is considered as  the entry level model of Mercedes-Benz.

The Mercedes A Class is different from other Mercedes segment in terms of its bold & striking design.At a price of 23-24,06,000 ₹,the A-class is also the cheapest Mercedes in India.Compact,powerful,loaded with features,the A-Class is a whole new concept.Mercedes hopes to lure the young generation in India towards the A-Class.

The A-Class variants include A 180 BlueEfficiency, A 200 BlueEfficiency, A 250 BlueEfficiency, A 180 CDI BlueEfficiency, A 200 CDI BlueEfficiency & A 220 CDI BlueEfficiency.

Large Image (optional)In India,the driver-focussed A 180 marks a change in Merc’s traditional approach – targeting the self-driven rather than the chauffeur-driven luxury car buyer.  The A-Class has radical diamond shaped grilled and distinctive headlamps with DRLs (day time running lamps). The hatchback is also well sculpted with aggressive lines, which are bolder than the Hyundai Fluidic design philosophy.The A-Class looks sporty not only from the outside, but also from the inside. It is also marginally bigger than the 1-Series hatchback, offering lot of space as compared to the premium hatchbacks like the VW Beetle and the Fiat 500.It certainly makes a good first impression – the A-class looks simply stunning. It’s a youthful, fresh design that is markedly different from the vast, regal look of traditional Mercs. The grille comprises 302 diamond-shaped aluminium bits, the headlamps are flared, and bold cuts and slashes run along the side of the car. The youth-focussed design continues with the wide haunches at the rear, the low roof, twin exhaust pipes and 17-inch smoked grey alloys.The SLS AMG-style triple air-con vents, the free-standing screen for the COMAND interface, the sculpted steering wheel and the chequered-design dials add to the youthful flair.

The A-Class is available with three petrol and three diesel engine options in Europe. The petrol lineup consists of A180 with 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol producing 122bhp, A200 with same engine tuned to produce 156bhp and A250 powered by 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol developing 211bhp. The diesel options include A180CDI churning out 109bhp and 250Nm from 1.8-litre turbocharged mill, A200CDI with output of 136bhp and 300Nm, along with A220CDI having 2.2-litre diesel producing 170bhp and 350Nm of torque.In India, we  get the A180 1.6-litre base petrol variant of the A-Class, along with the 1.8-litre turbo diesel mill that also powers the B-Class.

A-class-2_2159720cThe 1.6-litre turbocharged, direct-injection petrol engine under the hood of this A 180 powers the front wheels via a seven-speed, twin-clutch transmission. And, at 4,292mm long, 1,780mm wide and 1,433mm tall, it’s no ‘small car’; in fact it is almost as big as a Ford Fiesta saloon.

Although an electric steering adjustment and even a powered front passenger seat is not available, the A-Class comes equipped with Bluetooth connectivity, seven airbags, ESP, Bi-Xenon headlamps and USB connectivity. Even the massive panoramic sunroof comes as standard.
The boot, with its 341-litre capacity, is big by hatchback standards, but for the Indian variant, the space-saver spare tyre sits inside (rather than beneath) the boot, eating into luggage space.

Over all,the Mercedes A-Class is an a different segment of its own.With the 3star Mercedes badge in this price range,the A-class should not have any issues selling in the Market.The only question remains is whether Indians would accept a compact luxury car like the A-Class as luxury cars in India have traditionally been associated with big expensive saloons & SUVs.