Mercedes-Benz CLA Coupé review: A stylish ride that bridges sport and elegance
Small but mighty
If there was a car that is right up the alley of the elite fashion crowd, the Mercedes-Benz CLA Coupé is it. The style maven of the German automobile brand gets a sleek, new look this year — its first major update since it launched in 2013 and a facelift in 2016 — and the shapely vehicle is a veritable head turner.
The four-door CLA is unquestionably sporty and elegant all at once. Boasting a long, stretched entry line above the windows and frameless doors, the sex appeal on this brand-new model has indeed been turned up a couple of notches. This is the car you'd want to take to all your classiest soirees — dinner at Odette, high tea at Fullerton Bay Hotel, or drinks at Tippling Club (driver included). In true coupé style, it encompasses design elements such as a low-slung bonnet with powerdomes and a rear licence plate that has been moved down, making it a modern design icon. Flat headlamps and the diamond radiator grille form the CLA's sporty face.
Size-wise, the classy vehicle is also a touch bigger at 50mm longer and wider than the previous model — its broader stance allows it to sit better on the road. Glide in and the interior design elements are both high-tech and youthful avant-garde, with multi-contour seats with massage function and climate control, air vents that remind us of sporty turbines, and a widescreen display that is fully free-standing.
With the same widescreen instrument and infotainment display as the new A-Class hatch, you'll get to be boss of the MBUX (Mercedes-Benz User Experience). Your command of "Hey Mercedes" will quickly enable you to set it up, and other requests — such as where to get a great cuppa — follow without a hitch. You're also able to save all your preferences, including seat settings with its massage function, favourite radio station and the like, to your profile. What's fascinating is also MBUX's intuitive functions —the reading lamp can be switched on and off by extending a hand towards the rearview mirror, or if you reach towards an unoccupied front passenger seat in the dark, it will immediately illuminate. As soon as your hand leaves the area, the light automatically switches off.
The driveline in the CLA 200 is a 1.4-litre turbo-petrol four-cylinder with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, and the cruise is overall quiet, smooth, and with enough punch to get you around the city streets of Singapore. At faster speeds, it feels suitably sporty — enough for us to tick all the right boxes on this baby coupé.
For more information, visit Mercedes-Benz.