The CLA250 enters its second season as the most affordable offering in the Mercedes-Benz lineup. While it has four doors and seats five, the CLA features a sleek, coupe-like profile usually reserved for more expensive luxury sedans. The result is a prestigious, high-quality compact with an accessible asking price.
What's New for 2015
The CLA250 receives minor interior upgrades only.
Choosing Your Mercedes-Benz CLA250
Although the CLA250 is slotted below the Mercedes-Benz compact C-Class, it's actually a bit larger and more aerodynamic. The CLA250 is the only front-drive passenger vehicle in the lineup, but like its stablemates is eligible for all-wheel drive, known as 4MATIC. The turbocharged 2-liter four-cylinder produces 208 horsepower and is hooked to a seven-speed automated manual transmission with standard shift paddles.
The CLA250 starts out with a leatherette interior with power front seats and driver memory, automatic wipers, Bluetooth phone and audio, 5.8-inch infotainment control interface and an eight-speaker sound system. The CLA250 rolls on 17-inch alloy wheels.
The available Premium package enhances the interior with dual-zone automatic climate control, heated front seats, auto-dimming mirrors, keyless access and ignition, and a premium Harman Kardon sound system with satellite radio. Premium-equipped models can get an Interior package with leather seating (complemented by expanded leatherette trim) and ambient interior lighting.
The Multimedia packages gets you a rearview camera, navigation, a six-CD changer, digital music storage and a larger infotainment screen. Safety is the theme of the Driver Assistance package, which includes adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, lane keeping assist and blind spot monitoring.
You can add some performance flavor to your CLA250 with the Sport package, which tacks on 18-inch wheels, a more aggressively styled front end and upgraded brakes. The Sport Plus package expands on the performance theme with sportier trim throughout and sport-tuned suspension, steering and exhaust systems. Numerous standalone options are available on every model, including leather upholstery, a panoramic sunroof, wood interior trim, summer performance tires, bi-xenon headlamps and an automated parking system.
The Premium and Interior packages make a CLA250 a complete luxury car, if that's the direction you desire. The Sport Plus is for buyers who want to wring every possible ounce of performance out of the car. Either approach works, but we don't recommend maxing out on both luxury and performance. That sort of spoils the CLA250's most compelling attribute: price.