Second-generation CLA will be revealed at this week's Consumer Electronics Show. A Shooting Brake version will arrive later this year
3 January 2019

Images of the second-generation CLA have leaked online ahead of its imminent reveal at the Consumer Electronics Show, which is already underway in Las Vegas.

Australian site Redline published a handful of CLA images, which show the exterior and interior of the new model, before removing the post.

UPDATE: The Mercedes-Benz CLA has been officially revealed - get the details here

Set for UK delivery next June, the 2019 CLA adopts all the various developments already seen on other new A-Class models, including a re-engineered version of its predecessor’s platform supporting both front- and four-wheel drive, and the choice of two different rear suspension systems.

Updated four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines also feature, as well as a contemporary interior boasting Mercedes' new MBUX operating system with digital instruments and touch screen infotainment functions, among a host of new equipment. A Shooting Brake estate variant will be unveiled later in the year.

Joining the recently unveiled A-Class Saloon as the second dedicated four-door model in an expanded eight-model strong compact car line-up from the German car maker, the new CLA has grown in size and is now longer than a BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe.  Figures are not planned to be made official until its unveiling, but Mercedes-Benz officials confirm it is longer than the 4549mm long A-Class Saloon.

The added length is concentrated mainly within the wheelbase, providing scope for larger rear door apertures, easier access to the rear seat and improved interior packaging with greater rear legroom.

As with the first-generation CLA, it receives a coupe-like profile with a heavily curved roofline and short boot. 

Our Verdict

Mercedes-Benz CLA road test review - hero front

The CLS sold on its exclusivity. Can the Mercedes CLA pull the same trick - or do its A-Class underpinnings hold it back?

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

Aerodynamic developments include an almost completely flat undertray with various diffuser-like elements to smooth airflow at speed. Mercedes-Benz is yet to reveal details, but it is believed the new four-door comes close to matching the outstanding 0.22 Cd of its predecessor despite a larger frontal area.

The new look is a further evolution of Mercedes’ so-called ‘sensual purity’ design lineage, with smoother and fuller forms set to replace the taut surfacing treatment and heavily etched swage lines of the first-generation CLA. The design-led focus is what will distinguish the CLA from the A-Class Saloon, similar to how the larger CLS sits alongside the E-Class.

Recently seen prototypes also point the way to the look of the second-generation CLA Shooting Brake estate. Like its predecessor, it's expected to receive a heavily stylised appearance, with a sloping roofline and angled tailgate set to prioritise appearance over load-carrying capacity. 

The new CLA and CLA Shooting Brake will be the fifth and sixth models to use Mercedes’ MFA2 platform, following on from the five-door A-Class, A-Class Saloon, long-wheelbase A-Class Saloon and recently unveiled B-Class. The MFA2 platform supports front-wheel drive and four-wheel drive and can accommodate either a torsion beam or multi-link rear suspension. 

Power for the new CLA pair will come from a range of four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines, including a powered-up version of Mercedes’ latest M260 petrol unit in AMG's new four-wheel-drive CLA 35 4Matic models. That shares its powertrain with the recently launched A35 AMG variant.

Spy photographers have recently snapped both the AMG CLA 35 and CLA 45 models, set to launch a few months after the standard CLA, testing with relatively light body disguise. The 'mini-CLS' body shape is clear to see, with the lesser-powered 35 - due to put out 302bhp - featuring dual tailpipes, and the range-topping 45 featuring quad pipes. 

Powertrain specs for the upcoming Mercedes-AMG A45 hot hatch have previously been accidentally posted on a German insurance website, indicating that the 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine would receive 382bhp in standard form and 416bhp in 'S' form. The CLA will share the same four-wheel drive powertrain, so power is expected to be identical. 

A more highly tuned version of the M260 engine will be used for range-topping CLA 45 models, according to AMG officials. Those variants will, like the upcoming A45, use an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox and newly developed four-wheel drive that features an electronically controlled ‘drift mode’. 

Other new Mercedes models confirmed for sale in 2019 include the new GLE, the third-generation B-Class and the first model from Mercedes’ EQ electric car division, the EQC, all of which have already been revealed. 

Join the debate



2 November 2018

Fwd hatches with longer front over hangs don't work as estates.

2 November 2018

...or to stay interested. The proliferation of bodystyles and models is bonkers. Which manufacturer now makes the most? Actual models, I mean, not otions but actual models.

2 November 2018

Cartoon proportions.  This thing is going to to be even dumpier than the hatch.

2 November 2018

Had to think hard what this particular combination of three letters C & L & A means in Mercedes's nomaclature and had to give up.

But anyway the outline looks sharp and promising. I hope Mercedes would do a slimmer and sharper front elevation. It should give up the typical dumpy looks,

2 November 2018

 How many Car makers will we have in the future?,an important question?, well, there might be because very few are producing something different they’re just churning out the profit makers,and now that the way we buy a Car has changed more “little Boxes” which have the same design cues are becoming a blight on the Roads, Mercedes do however try to be different.

9 November 2018

Strangely I think it looks a bit like a Vauxhall Insignia?....

Maybe it's just the prototype cladding. Hats off to Merc for continuing to build small saloons.

9 November 2018

Seriously, what is the difference between this CLA and the A-Class saloon? Apart from the CLA having a more sloping rear screen and therefore presumably worse rear room, for a higher price?

26 November 2018

Who the F**** needs 400 bhp??????

(Ideal for getting the kids to school extra quickly????)

26 November 2018
jagdavey wrote:

Who the F**** needs 400 bhp??????

(Ideal for getting the kids to school extra quickly????)

So as a Jag fan you don't like the F-Type R then? (etc)

26 November 2018

I just had a thought - how are these range toppers relevant to anything else in the range? I used to love the 'halo' cars in every range but the more time passes the less and less excited I get about them. Almost to the point now I barely have the energy to click on the article to read it. 400bhp which you can't really use in any serious manner, ridiculous tax and ridiculous economy. Oh and residuals that make the car near disposable after three years.

Or am I missing the point?


Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week