In-depth Reviews

Mercedes A-Class saloon

"The Mercedes A-Class saloon is full of the latest technology, but with a more conservative and slippery shape than the hatchback"

Carbuyer Rating

4.0 out of 5

Used car deals

Pros

  • Clever and attractive interior
  • Refined road manners
  • Efficient engines

Cons

  • Restrictive boot opening
  • Not a driver's car
  • Pricey options

Anyone considering a Mercedes A-Class may be surprised to learn a saloon is also available in showrooms. The three-box bodystyle is something of a dying breed in the UK, but think of the A-Class saloon as a mini-Mercedes C-Class and it may begin to hold more appeal.

The small four-door even has a few advantages over its big brother, starting with its svelte shape. Mercedes designers and engineers have spent many hours optimising the latest A-Class in the wind tunnel, not only making it the most aerodynamic car it sells, but that any manufacturer sells, which pays dividends for efficiency, emissions and refinement.

Secondly, the A-Class has Mercedes' latest and greatest infotainment system, which is more powerful than the one in the C-Class. Getting rid of mechanical gauges altogether, the twin-screen setup boasts slick graphics courtesy of the latest MBUX operating system. It also features a new kind of voice control for the brand that you wake up by saying "Hey Mercedes" - it can interpret the sort of questions you might normally ask 'Siri' on your phone or 'Alexa' at home.

Trim levels include Sport and AMG Line, both of which are well equipped, but packs of extras (called Executive, Premium and Premium Plus) can be added to ramp up the technology and features. As you'd expect for a Mercedes, there's also a broad array of individual options to pick from.

Thanks to an increase in length, the A-Class saloon has a 420-litre boot – 50 litres bigger than the hatchback's and just five litres shy of the Audi A3 saloon's. There's plenty of space for adults in the front and back seats, too, but some might be put off by the fact the boot opening isn't quite as large as a hatchback's

Engines include a 1.3-litre turbocharged petrol A 200 with a surprising 161bhp, giving it a 0-62mph time of 8.1 seconds. It's nippy on paper, but feels strained if you demand too much from it. Unlike every other A-Class saloon, it comes with a six-speed manual gearbox as standard, but Mercedes' seven-speed automatic gearbox is optional and this combo returns up to 47.9mpg. For even better fuel economy, there's a single 1.5-litre A 180 d diesel, returning up to 64.2mpg. It's the slowest version, though, making 114bhp and taking 10.6 seconds to do 0-62mph.

As with the A-Class hatchback, Mercedes has concentrated on boosting comfort, so while the saloon is an excellent motorway companion, it doesn't feel as sharp as the Audi A3 saloon or a BMW 2 Series. There's plenty of grip, but the steering is slower to respond, meaning here it resembles a C-Class that's shrunk in the wash.

Most Popular

Best cheap sports cars
Best cars
21 Nov 2020

Best cheap sports cars

Best hybrid cars
Best cars
24 Nov 2020

Best hybrid cars

Best company cars
Best cars
26 Nov 2020

Best company cars

More on A-Class saloon

Mercedes A 250 e and B 250 e plug-in hybrids now on sale
Mercedes A250e and B250e plug-in hybrids
Mercedes A-Class
10 Jun 2020

Mercedes A 250 e and B 250 e plug-in hybrids now on sale

Mercedes B-Class plug-in hybrid joins A-Class PHEV; 42 miles of range promised
Mercedes-AMG A 35 Saloon arrives with 302bhp
Mercedes-AMG A 35 Saloon - front driving
Mercedes A-Class saloon
28 Mar 2019

Mercedes-AMG A 35 Saloon arrives with 302bhp

The Mercedes-AMG A 35 Saloon will rival Audi S3 and Stinger GT-S before fire-breathing A 45 arrives