Mercedes-Benz CLA Review 2021 | Top Gear
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BBC TopGear
Car Review

Mercedes-Benz CLA

£ 51,135 - £ 57,135
510
Published: 13 Jan 2015
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Odd-looking CLA is more flawed than we'd ever expect from Merc in 2016

Good stuff

Unique offering, styling from certain angles

Bad stuff

Impractical rear, A-Class is cheaper and better, styling from all the other angles

Overview

What is it?

An A-Class with a boot. Mercedes has really excelled itself here – in a time when niches are increasingly hard to find and exploit, this one is genuinely new. A sort of saloon/coupe, but in the hatchback class. Think mini-CLS and you’re about there. As we said, it’s based on the A-Class so shares the platform, engines, transmission and interior, but gains a droopy new back end. For added high-performance thrills, there’s the AMG CLA 45. 

All well and good, apart from the styling. From certain angles it looks great: we love the side-profile, very junior CLS. But from others it looks compromised: a little too tall, a little too narrow, a bit too stubby to be a truly svelte coupe. That's not the only compromise either. 

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Our choice from the range

What's the verdict?

Not what Merc should be doing. Focus on engineering, not trying to invent another niche
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