Category: Test drive

A-class Little Craziness

2023

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A-class Little Craziness
A-class Little Craziness
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ON OUR COVER

A-CLASS

LITTLE COMMUNITY

Hardly anyone will argue with the fact that the company “Mercedes-Benz” makes extremely solid cars. Even the small Mercedes C-Class by our standards is a very large sedan, and the latest SLK roadster (sporty, lightweight, compact) stands out among its competitors primarily in practicality. But everything changes: at the Geneva Motor Show, the company presents a completely new car of the so-called A-Class - the smallest Mercedes.

It is hardly necessary to say how risky this car is for such a conservative company, especially since the estimated production volume is quite large - at least 160 thousand cars a year. The plant’s capabilities will allow even 200, 000 cars to be assembled - there would be buyers. However, marketing specialists have no doubt in success.

The A-class is the shortest Mercedes in the entire history of the company: its length is only 3.58 m, but the rest is by no means small - 1.72 m wide and 1.6 m high. Thanks to such an unconventional aspect ratio, the car is very spacious - with five passengers there remains a very solid volume (350 l) of the luggage compartment. With two, the luggage can take 1, 150 liters, and with one driver the small Mercedes offers as much as 1, 700 liters of free space - this is only slightly less than that of an E-class station wagon with the rear seat folded down. The width of the luggage compartment between the wheel arches - 1.11 m - allows you to place very bulky items.

A lot of interesting body design. A completely flat floor in the cabin was made possible thanks to the “sandwich” scheme, in which the driver and passengers are placed above normal, which reduces the likelihood of injury from a side impact. In such a short car there is very little space in front of the driver, however, with a frontal impact the engine will not get into the passenger compartment, since the floor of the car is “double”. Of course, standard safety features are not forgotten - belts with tensioners, height-adjustable head restraints, frontal airbags and even side airbags in the front doors. All of them, as well as ABS are standard equipment and, accordingly, the base price.

The power unit of the new "Mercedes" is located transversely in front, it is inclined forward at an angle of 52 degrees. It can be a gasoline engine with a volume of 1397 cmz and a power of 60 kW / 82 l. with. and with a maximum torque of 130 N.m (model A140) or more powerful - 1598 cm3, 75 kW / 102 l. p., 150 N.m (model A160) with a five-speed gearbox. Automatic hydromechanical transmission is not provided; probably, its place will be taken by a conventional automatic transmission gearbox. Speed ​​and dynamic characteristics of the car are quite high, taking into account the solid (1000 kg) curb weight and an impressive frontal area (more than that of the Mercedes S-Class). The maximum speed of the A140 is 175 km / h, and acceleration from standstill to 100 km / h is 13 s. The more powerful A160 accelerates to 190 km / h and picks up “100” in 11s. For lovers of fast driving, the A190 is designed, which will be equipped with a 1.9-liter engine: 90 kW / 122 liters. S., 180 N.m.

The smallest Mercedes can also be diesel: there are 1.7 liter engines with 44 kW / 60 liter turbocharging. with. without intermediate cooling and 66 kW / 90 l. with. with intercooler. With an economical driving style, the average fuel consumption will be less than 4 l / 100 km. Gasoline models consume from 4 to 7 l / 100 km according to EU93116 standards.

Like the rest of the Mercedes, the A-Class is presented in three versions - Classic, Elegant and Sport. Although by "Mercedes" standards, a new car is inexpensive (the base price is about 30 thousand marks), but in terms of a meter of length, the price is consistent with the image of the company.

So, the latest history of the Mercedes is written before our very eyes: let's see what the A-class is - a gamble or an exact calculation? The original car of one of the most conservative companies is just beginning its journey.

Anatoly FOMIN

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