• 2020 Mercedes-Benz CLA is upon us and here are the first reviews

All-new Mercedes CLA launch event video review roundup within

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Mercedes not only invented the four-door coupe with the original CLS, but it also eventually launched a smaller version of that car, dubbed the CLA. Now in its second generation, the all-new CLA holds a lot of promise that stems from its exterior styling, bold and upmarket interior, and the news that it drives considerably better than the model it replaces.

2020 Mercedes CLA Video Review

On the styling front, the 2020 Mercedes-Benz CLA sedan is, without a doubt and much more so than the previous version, a smaller reproduction of the larger CLS. The CLA has the same basic front and rear fascia design and the side profile isn’t too far removed from the CLS’ either. There is no way around it, though: the new CLA is a pretty car to look at, whichever angle you choose to view it from and it is considerably less fussy to behold than the outgoing model.

Its interior is the same as in all current compact Mercedes models, but this is by no means a complaint. It has two screens, one for the digital dials and another for infotainment, and the overall design puts it ahead of any rival in terms of ambiance. It feels quite upmarket too, managing to get closer to the feel of the rest of the Mercedes range that the previous CLA.

Many people criticized the old CLA for not driving as well as you’d expect it to, but I think that has to do with the version you got to drive. The AMG Pack example I drove a few years back (on a long, cross-country trek) felt like driving a sharp, planted hot hatch with a comfy edge. Mercedes says it’s improved the way the CLA drives compared to its predecessor, so from my perspective they’re making something that was already good, better.

Shift smoothness for the dual-clutch automatic transmission was sometimes an issue in the old CLA, though, and now Mercedes says it has addressed it.

There is also more choice for those who want a hot new CLA. There is now the CLA35 model that has about the same power as an Audi S3 sedan and if you want the most extreme CLA possible, then you have to go for the CLA45 (that has yet to be revealed) which will take the fight to the Audi RS3 and other similar models with around 400 horsepower.

Most reviewers got to try out the CLA 250, the most powerful non-AMG model, and they found that its suspension is much more forgiving than that of the previous CLA. It apparently rides so much better than the car it replaces, yet at the same time it has not lost the sharp touch and rewarding dynamics that made the old model a hoot to throw around a twisty backroad.

Final Thoughts

2020 Mercedes-Benz CLA is upon us and here are the first reviews Exterior
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The new CLA is shaping up to be quite a desirable car, one that will later also be available as a wagon and that will take its coolness factor up to eleven, especially since there is no longer a load-lugging version of the larger CLS. So if you’ll want a sleek-coupe like Mercedes estate car, the CLA wagon will be your only choice.

Further Reading

2020 Mercedes-Benz CLA is upon us and here are the first reviews Exterior
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Read our in-depth review of the 2019 Mercedes-Benz CLA

2020 Mercedes-AMG CLA 35 Unveiled with 300 HP and Four-Door Coupe Luxury Exterior
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Read everything we know about the 2020 Mercedes-AMG CLA 35

2021 Mercedes-AMG CLA 45 Exterior Spyshots
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Read our speculative review (and see all the spy shots) of the 2020 Mercedes-AMG CLA 45

2019 Mercedes A-Class vs 2019 Mercedes CLA
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Read about how the 2019 Mercedes-CLA Competes with the 2019 Mercedes A-Class

Andrei Nedelea
Andrei Nedelea
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