2020 Mercedes A Class review
The Mercedes A Class is hugely popular with British drivers, and as a luxury small car, it's a premium hatchback offering.
The A Class is now in its third generation, with the most recent proving to be popular.
The latest model has been redesigned from the ground-up so there's little resemblance to the model it replaced.
While the previous A Class was a comfortable car, it wasn't a huge seller, so Mercedes made a brave decision to re-invent it.
Stylish car with great build quality
The result is a stylish car with great build quality, an impressive infotainment system and what is undoubtedly a class-leading interior.
There are some downsides, the rear seats can be crowded for tall adults, and the 1.3-litre petrol engine feels a tad underpowered - though if you just drive around town, then you may find it liveable with.
For us, the A Class takes on the likes of the Audi A3, and the BMW 1 Series and creates an interesting conundrum for those wanting a car with style and luxury.
One of the benefits for the Mercedes vehicle is that the interior is better than its rivals, including the Audi - and that's saying something.
Along with a modern design, there's good use of premium quality materials and sophisticated technology to deliver a segment-leading cabin.
The infotainment system offers voice recognition and is easy-to-use.
The A35 and the A45 S
Of the trims, the SE, Sport and AMG Line may be worth looking closely at – and for those who want more, the range toppers in the shape of the A35 and the A45 S are worth driving to compare with the standard models.
Standard equipment includes a couple of 7-inch infotainment screens, satnav, DAB radio and active safety kit.
The Sport model adds automatic climate control and LED headlights, and the AMG Line delivers a sporty interior and some exterior changes.
The A35 and the A45 S are impressive hot hatches with AMG-specific menus for the touchscreens, and they get sporty makeover.
Engines for the Mercedes A Class
Engines for the Mercedes A Class will meet every need with three diesels and six petrol choices.
The petrol engines produce either 134 bhp or 221 bhp, with the A35 delivering an impressive 302bhp, while the A45 S offers a startling 415bhp (and it is very expensive).
There's also a 1.5-litre diesel engine which is a good performer though the 2.0-litre diesel alternative producing either 148 bhp or 187 bhp is better for a smooth performance.
Fuel economy for the petrol engines is around 48 mpg, while the A 180 d returns an impressive 61 mpg.
The engines come with a six-speed manual transmission or, for the more powerful versions, a sleek changing seven-speed DCT automatic gearbox.
The more powerful diesel unit comes with an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission - which is also fitted to the plug-in hybrid.
The Mercedes A Class 250 e hybrid
The hybrid, the A Class 250 e, impresses and uses a 1.3-litre turbocharged petrol engine, along with a 15.6 kWh battery pack to power the 75kW electric motor. The hybrid output is an impressive 215 bhp and has an all-electric range of 42 miles.
More impressively still, the official WLTP testing cycle for the hybrid’s fuel economy is an incredible 201 mpg.
For those who enjoy a responsive car, the Mercedes A Class is a joy to drive, with the steering offering good feedback and the designers have obviously focussed on driving comfort as their priority.
There's little body roll and the car’s stance delivers a rewarding drive with good grip, though you may find there's not as much grip as you are expecting when cornering at speed.
A Class is a safe offering
The A Class is, as you would expect, a safe offering and has a five-star safety rating from Euro NCAP.
Safety kit includes automatic emergency braking, driver attention alert and lane-keeping assistance. There's also cruise control and speed limit assistance.
Mercedes has also added an active bonnet that will help reduce pedestrian injury should they and the car be involved in an accident.
Undoubtedly, the A Class is nice to look at and very comfortable to drive, but it is not as practical as some rivals.
The boot is slightly larger at 370-litres than the model it replaces, and this will expand to 1,210-litres with the split rear seats are folded down.
Mercedes A Class is a sound choice
Essentially, the new Mercedes A Class is a sound choice for anyone wanting a luxurious and comfortable car over a sporty and practical rival. For the money, the technology and interior, the A Class is not only desirable, but a real joy to drive. Remember to head to DesperateSeller.co.uk where we have great deals on used Mercedes Benz A Class cars for sale
DesperateSeller.co.uk rating: 4.5/5