2019 Mercedes-Benz A-Class Preview
- New entry-level Mercedes sedan
- Turbocharged, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine
- Front-wheel or all-wheel drive
- New approach to displays and infotainment systems
- Artificial intelligence and augmented reality technologies
- Engineered for safety; equipped to avoid collisions
- Made in Mexico
- On sale by end of 2018
The 2019 Mercedes-Benz A-Class sedan is the new entry-level model for the proud luxury automaker. Initially offered in A220 and A220 4Motion model series, the new A-Class will directly compete with the Audi A3.
Drawn to the current Mercedes-Benz design language, known as ‘Sensual Purity,’ the new A-Class is equipped with a chrome-pinned diamond grille pattern, long and low hood, standard LED headlights and taillights, and wheels sized between 17 inches and 19 inches in diameter.
In order to dress the car up, buyers can choose Progressive, AMG Line, and Night appearance packages. A hands-free power-operated trunk is available.Freestanding instrumentation and infotainment display screens sit on what Mercedes characterizes as a “wing-shaped” dashboard that runs in an unbroken line across the front of the cabin. The lower section, according to the automaker, appears to be floating, giving the car a modern and airy ambience.
Standard equipment includes dual 7-inch displays, dual-zone automatic climate control breathing through turbine-style vents, keyless entry with push-button engine starting, and a panoramic glass roof.
A-Class buyers can upgrade their car with 10.25-inch instrumentation and infotainment system display screens. Additionally, the A220 can be fitted with multi-contour front seats, heated front seats, ventilated front seats, and a heated steering wheel. A Burmeister premium sound system fills the cabin with high-end audio, while a 64-color ambient lighting system helps owners to customize the look and feel of the interior.
Under the Hood
The new A220 features a turbocharged, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine. It generates 188 horsepower and 221 lb.-ft. of torque, the latter available from just 1,250 rpm to 4,000 rpm. That torque spread ought to make the car feel lively.
A 7-speed dual-clutch automated manual transmission powers the front wheels, unless you’ve ordered the 4Motion all-wheel-drive system. Dynamic Select technology allows the driver to choose between different driving modes, and a set of paddle shifters provides manual control over gear changes.
All A-Class models have a MacPherson strut front suspension design. Versions with front-wheel drive make do with a torsion beam rear axle, while versions with 4Motion get a more sophisticated 4-link rear suspension. The A220 4Motion can be further upgraded with adaptive dampers and a Dynamic Body Control active suspension designed to eliminate unwanted body motions.
Mercedes says the A-Class is the first automobile the company has engineered in its new Technology Center for Vehicle Safety, and that designers paid special attention to fortifying the passenger compartment against frontal, side, rear, and rollover accidents.
Buy a base A220 and it will have a low-speed automatic emergency braking system with pedestrian and cyclist detection capabilities. If you want more than that you’ll need the optional Driver Assistance package. It includes a long list of active driver-assistance and collision-avoidance technologies, along with a more capable automatic emergency braking system and the company’s PreSafe Plus rear collision preparation system.
Notably, the adaptive cruise control system included in the Driver Assistance package takes into account route-based features to keep the car at a sensible speed for upcoming situations.
The automaker is using the A-Class to debut its new Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) infotainment technology. For the first time, it employs a touch-screen display in addition to a touchpad on the center console and touch controls on the steering wheel.
Artificial intelligence and natural-voice-recognition technology are standard, and A-Class owners will be able to issue commands similar to Siri, Alexa, and Google Home: “Hey Mercedes, find the nearest coffee shop.” Apple CarPlay and Android Auto bring your smartphone functions to the display screen, too.
Options include wireless device charging, navigation, and a head-up display. Mercedes will also offer new connected car services in the A-Class, such as a vehicle location tracker and Car-to-X communication capability. Augmented reality video capability is also available.