While the GLA may be one of the least expensive ways to get yourself behind the wheel of a new Mercedes-Benz, it doesn't look like it. The GLA 250 follows the Mercedes-Benz corporate design language excellently, looking more like a tall hatchback than a full-on SUV. This approach definitely gives a more European flair to the model, which is a different direction from some other manufacturers who make small crossovers that look awkwardly tall. Inside, the GLA somehow feels modern and somewhat retro at the same time, as if it was inspired by the dawn of the Jet Age. It comes standard with a fairly convincing leatherette, but leather is offered as an upgrade alongside various trim materials like carbon fiber, wood, and aluminum.
The standard AMG GLA 45 looks pretty similar to the GLA 250 to the untrained eye, but it features an aggressive looking bumper, splitter, and rear diffuser. Inside, the AMG GLA 45 is trimmed out like a purpose-built sports car, with Alcantara seats and trim (or DINOMICA, as Mercedes calls it), red seat belts reminiscent of racing harnesses and well-bolstered sport seats. If you want, you can always outfit it with luxury materials like the GLA 250, but if you're going with an AMG, you may as well go big and bold with the AMG Performance Studio Package. This package adds a gigantic rear spoiler along with new wheels, Recaro seats, some aerodynamic tweaks, and a unique, yellow-trimmed interior.