Car review MercedesBenz AClass driven road test BBC Top Gear

13 Мар 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »
Mercedes-Benz B 180 CDI AT Base

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This is not an A-Class. Rather, it is an but not as we know it. The smallest Merc has been a lumpen little a mini-MPV big on practicality but short on but the new A approaches the small-posh-car-for-small-posh-families dilemma an entirely different angle. is, if, like Merc, you’re to a letter-based naming system and you to denote a car smaller than a you’re pretty much with the A-prefix. Damn alphabet!

So, if not an A, what is this? a conventional five-door, front-wheel-drive that’s a square-on rival to A3 Sportback, a top-end VW Golf and the rear-drive) BMW 1-Series.

The design is. let’s just say there’s a lot of it on. Rising swage lines, creases, Christmas-tree LED clusters: as you round the car with a bemused on your face, squinting and tilting neck, you begin to if Merc designers were by the line rather than by the Overall, though, we think the works. Make up your own but we will say this: it looks in the metal than in photos, with the optional big wheels, gloss bits, pointy grille and giganto-sunroof. Merc will be rubbing their in glee as potential customers the options list.

At great expense and employing the in audionanotechnology, Top Gear has installed a soundcard in this page, you to experience how it sounds to travel in the at 70mph on a gritty motorway. To it, press your ear to the page yep, like that. hear it? The distinctive sound of nothing at all? That is the made by the A-Class travelling at Glorious, soothing silence, the of being a long way from the world.

That’s what this is all about: big-car refinement in a package. The old A — at least one I drove — was a grizzly, old thing, but this car feels as and impermeable as an S-Class: not bulky, superbly built and cosseting. The wafts along like a far pricier machine, road- and noise near imperceptible within the confines of the reassuringly cabin.

It’s very in here. The A-Class neatly the austere elegance of bigger with a gently schporty with fat metal air vents by the SLS, wavy surfaces and of soft-touch plastics and posh We couldn’t lay our hands on a truly A, but even the cheapest models get seats, a big colour display and electronic goodies.

There’s than a hint of S-Class to the experience, too. Whether is good or bad rather depends you want from your Until the 340bhp A45 AMG arrives year, you’d assume the of choice would be the range-topping petrol, with its 208bhp turbo engine. It isn’t. the A250 is rapid — takes less than seconds and it’ll run to 150mph but it offers up all the fingertip involvement of a of Operation in woollen mittens. The petrol, with its 154bhp of the same engine, is equally

This may make it sound as if TG did not driving the A-Class. We did. The is to ignore the petrols and go diesel, at point the A suddenly begins to much sense. We mainly the A200 CDI, which has a developing 134bhp and 221lb ft of It is treaclesome and good: not as revvy and as BMW’s latest diesels, but and effortlessly quick.

There’s a A180 diesel on the way, and a powerful 168bhp A220 We drove the latter but — at with the so-so seven-speed ‘box rather than the manual — it felt brawnier than the A200, is potent enough for most. As a of the diesel A’s refinement, we whacking into its limiter, not it’s a low-revving engine but you’re so insulated from that you’ve no idea near the red line.

If you feel the need to hustle it, the A proves to be a quick way of making multi-link rear suspension up bad tarmac and the steering and gearshift and clean. Most of the time, it’s nicer to hush along, embracing your Captain Slow rather your inner Stig. is why you should steer clear of the suspension and instead stick to the Comfort chassis. If you can handle the of rolling on the base-spec 16-inch we’d recommend those sacrificing a bit of grip and bling for ride quality. Diesel, little wheels: Top Gear not know what has come it.

Mercedes-Benz B 180 CDI AT Base

Some might argue has missed a trick by not imbuing its lightest car with snappier manners, but there are enough hatches around with aspirations. The bigger issue may be the new lack of practicality compared to its predecessor.

The rear seats are about acceptable for six-footers, they’re not preserving a vertical while bootspace is bijou: even, than the new BMW 1-Series. less bootspace than a is like having fewer tax than Jimmy Carr.

But new A was never intended to out-practicalate the A. Instead, think of it as a mini — a posh, easy-going that should fit in city spaces and shouldn’t cripple you on car tax — and you’ll get on just It’s no madcap hot hatch, the but it’s a classy little

The numbers

1796cc, 4cyl, 134bhp, 221lb ft, 65.7mpg, CO2, 0-62 in 9.3secs, 1370kg

The verdict

Not adrenaline-charged, not practical, but interesting to look at and a place to be on a long journey. A Merc-ish take on a conventional and a successful one.


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