Mercedes A-Class vs BMW 1 Series

One day after its launch here, Merc has sold no less than 400 cars. At Rs 30 lakh on-road Mumbai, the A isn’t exactly cheap. But then, it isn’t meant to be. Look at the car with the three-point star on these pages. Now go Google the old A-Class and look at the ghastly images that show up. This is a ground-up, new car with absolutely no hint of the gawkiness of its predecessor.

Not only did the designers get a fresh sheet of paper for the new A, they probably even got new pencils to sketch one of the most exotic-looking small cars on our roads. The upswept lines, the chrome mesh grille with that mother of an emblem in the centre shouting “MERCEDES-BENZ”, the large 17-inch alloys, coupe-like roof – it all makes sure you do not miss the car on the street.

Strangely, the in-your-face treatment doesn’t make the A look wannabe, simply because you instantly associate it with a Mercedes-Benz, and a Mercedes-Benz isn’t wannabe in any form. With no competition in the form of a conventional small, properly luxury car out there, the A-Class had the dance floor to itself.

That is, until the BMW 1 series decided to crash the party.