Overview & Reviews
You've probably heard the expression "You've got to start somewhere." Well, for car buyers lusting after something with a three-pointed star on the grille that still has an affordable price tag, that somewhere could very well be the compact Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class sedan.
On the basis of styling alone, the CLA-Class doesn't look entry-level: Its sleek "four-door coupe" silhouette is reminiscent of Mercedes' significantly more expensive CLS model. The CLA certainly feels like the real thing from the cockpit, too, as the automaker has fitted it with premium materials and a suite of the latest safety and multimedia features.
There are some downsides, most notably the rear seat's lack of headroom and a base engine that gets noisy when pushed hard. In the final measure, though, the CLA250's attractive price tag should win out, simply because it puts the dream of driving a Mercedes-Benz within reach of more people than ever before.
Current Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class Specs
The Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class is a compact luxury sedan that debuted for the 2014 model year. It's offered in two trim levels: the base CLA250 and the high-performance CLA45 AMG.
The CLA's standard features include 17-inch alloy wheels, leatherette (premium vinyl) upholstery, power front seats, the Mercedes COMAND interface with a 5.8-inch display, Bluetooth, Mercedes' mbrace2 telematics/smartphone integration system and a single-CD stereo. The CLA45 AMG is equipped similarly but also features a more powerful engine, all-wheel drive, 18-inch wheels, larger brakes and firmer suspension tuning. Major options include xenon headlights, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery, heated front seats, an upgraded audio system, a navigation system and an automated parallel parking system. Extra safety features, including lane departure warning and blind spot warning are also available.
For power, the CLA250 is fitted with a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 208 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. A seven-speed automated-manual transmission sends that power to either the front wheels or all four wheels in the available all-wheel-drive 4Matic model. The CLA45 AMG gets a modified version of this same engine that puts out an impressive 355 hp and 332 lb-ft of torque, along with a quicker-shifting version of the seven-speed transmission. All-wheel drive is standard for the AMG model.
Inside, the front seats offer good comfort and support, but the car's sloping rear roof line reduces headroom to the point that it's not very welcoming to full-size adults. In spite of its comparatively reasonable MSRP, the Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class still feels plenty upscale. Optioned out with the latest technology and high-quality leather and wood trim, the interior lives up to what most buyers will expect in a Mercedes.
In reviews, we've found that the Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class delivers sharp handling and a ride quality that's firm without being harsh. Acceleration from the base 2.0-liter engine is respectable, but the engine gets noisy when pushed hard and this unfortunately serves as a reminder that you're driving the entry-level Benz. The automated-manual transmission shifts quickly and smoothly, however, and offers three different preprogrammed shift patterns. As you'd expect, the CLA45 AMG takes everything up several notches with its gutsy 355-hp engine.
User Reviews:Showing 1 through 10 of 23.00
Awesome - 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class
By pothmer - November 7 - 4:58 am
Happiness is AMG. Love this car. Never had an AMG before, so can't compare it to other AMG's. Had a BMW M3 (sweet car) and this is better. (RWD super cars are undriveable in snow. Unless you get high-performance snow tires--then they are tanks...except that one time when you hit throttle on a wintry turn, rear wheels slide out, plant themselves into a curb and the axle breaks). But Mercedes has 4matic (which is a technical term 4magic; or "hand of God" if you don't believe in magic). The CLA45 has 4matic, 4 doors, 355hp and 332 lb ft. Torque.
Mercedes-Benz hits a home run with the CLA - 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class
By tonyride - April 7 - 12:54 am
I got my CLA250 about 1.5 month ago and after driving it for about 1500 miles I absolutely love the car. The sticker price was $40,025 ($38,700 negotiated) with Premium/Multimedia/Sports packages, Bi-Xenon head lights with LED tail lights, and Panorama roof. I love the driving dynamics of the car and the fuel economy is amazing. Being able to choose between Econ, Sport, and Manual mode is a plus. The Stop/Go feature took a little getting use to but now it doesn't bother me. You can always turn that feature off if you want. I get a lot of looks and double takes when I'm driving around and people have even asked me about it. I got a set of winter tires/wheels so I can drive it all year round.
cla 250 4matic - 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class
By discussion - August 22 - 12:36 am
bought the car in march and put 10,000 miles to date. the car is fun to drive, love the looks and the attention you get while driving it. we have had zero problem to date. The ride is smooth on the high way but little firm on rough pavement. I have driven the Porsche 911 and I am not comparing to two but I love driving the CLA much more than 2013 Porsche 911. its just seam to have a sportier feel on the road than the 911. it does not have a lot of room in the back for people 6ft but it is still comfortable. must get the sport body style with moon roof. I rate this car a 10. would highly recommend this car to any one. Wish there was a convertible CLA so I get one
Nice design particulary the front side. - 2016 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class
By Ed Reyes - March 4 - 12:25 pm
It's been a month that I owned this car, so far so good I don't have any problem or concern. I'll let you know in a year.
Beautiful Styling, Great Safety Features, Moderate Performance - 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class
By filmdog - February 20 - 3:39 am
My wife and I have owned many cars. This is the best looking of the entire lot. We opted for just about every safety and appearance feature, and we got terrific safety, and head-turning style. The engine, however, is the standard 208 horse turbo four, and that's where things get less spectacular. Rated acceleration is good on paper, but you can feel the tiny powerplant revving hard to yield reasonably brisk results. Compared to a 350E that I drove recently, the CLA feels like an underpowered toy. No surprise given the price difference. Handling is good. The feel is "light", but nonetheless stable and precise. A tiny gas tank requires frequent refills.Mileage is fair--with Econ mode OFF.
It's a Benz - 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class
By sumgai - May 12 - 11:13 am
This beauty is a Benz, I know because I cut my teeth in Benz's, literally. My first ride was my Dad's 1962 220s and i used the door sill to help me cut teeth, so there were some holes in the leather near the front window vent. He moved on to a '72 280se 4.5, a '87 300e, a '98 e320 and then a 2007 e350. I bought the 98 e320 from him when he got the 2007 and I offered to let him keep the carpeted floor mats since the car interiors were the same color. Surprisingly, the e320 was wider than the e350 and the 98 floor mats were too wide for the 2007! So imagine my delight when the drivers side 1998 e320 floor mat fit perfectly in the 2014 CLA250! (the passenger-side mat was 2 long)
Much more fun than expected... - 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class
By markcla - February 15 - 1:17 am
After reading various car magazine reviews on the CLA250 4Matic, I was a little nervous about taking delivery of my Mountain Gray/Brown leather specially ordered vehicle. After 200 miles in the car, Im ecstatic! Let me put to rest some of my concerns:
Fantastic Car - 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class
By 0815 - January 13 - 9:43 pm
Just got the CLA a couple of weeks ago - sticker price of 42K for the 4matic, premium package, multimedia package, driver assist, moon roof, light package, ..., jupiter red. Lots of features for that price. Car feels very luxurious and is fantastic to drive. Very fast and smooth, feels very secure to drive. Just love everything about it. Also is the first car where when I park it, I often get comments like "wow, awesome care". Definitely a head turner Definitely not a family care (or for people over 6 ft) - but still big enough to pickup the kids from time to time from school - for other family events we still have an SUV. Trunk in the CLA is surprisingly big and gas milage is great
Great New Technology & MB-AMG Excellence - 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class
By glineberry - September 17 - 1:25 pm
This car's engine represents exceptional technology. The sound is quite different from the V-8 AMG CLK55 I had before. Not as deep. This one definitely lets you know it's a turbo....get on boost and it's amazing. No appreciable turbo lag! I wanted AMG performance with 4Matic in an efficient package....I am not disappointed. Brakes, suspension and handling are also exceptional. Took about 7 months after I ordered it for the car to arrive....worth the wait.
Attractive Car but with minor flaws - 2017 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class
By Derek Fan - December 20 - 7:53 am
Sporty car with good agile handling. The size of this car makes racing a natural. The stiff suspension is based on personal preference. Since it's a sports coupe category it shouldn't be a problem for most.