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#12

in Upscale Small Cars

MSRP: $31,500 - $48,500
Invoice: $29,295 - $45,105
MPG: 26 City / 38 Hwy
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Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class Interior

Critics agree that the 2015 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class’ interior is made to typical Mercedes-Benz standards, with a first-rate, quiet cabin made of quality materials. They also think the CLA-Class has a tight rear seating area, and that it doesn’t have a very comfortable ride over uneven pavement.

  • "While the low-slung profile means there's not a lot of room, especially in the back, the interior is definitely up to Mercedes-Benz specifications when it comes to materials and assembly." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Although this is the bargain Benz, for the most part the CLA's interior looks and feels like a traditional Mercedes. Big analog gauges, a clean center stack design and tight fit and finish impart the classic, premium ambience shared across the Mercedes-Benz lineup." -- Edmunds
  • "The CLA's interior is authentic (there's that word again) Mercedes-Benz. We've seen the details before, from the standard thick-grip leather-wrapped steering wheel to the metallic climate control ductwork seen across the dashboard, all of which feels sufficiently close to an S-Class costing three or four times as much." -- Left Lane News (2014)
  • "Inside it has a proper Mercedes-Benz feel, with an interior that looks thousands of dollars more expensive than other $30,000 vehicles. Cheap sun visors are the only telltale sign of corporate penny-pinching here." -- Popular Mechanics (2014)

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Seating

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class seats five and comes standard with leatherette upholstery and a power-adjustable driver’s seat with memory settings. A power-adjustable passenger’s seat, leather upholstery and heated front seats are available on the CLA250. The CLA45 AMG comes standard with leatherette seats with faux suede inserts and power-adjustable front sport seats. You can also get available leather seats, heated front seats and AMG performance front seats on the CLA45 AMG.

Test drivers report that the CLA-Class’ front seats are comfortable, but that its rear seats are small, with little head- and legroom. Reviewers say the CLA-Class’ cabin is very quiet at speed.

  • "While the front seats are quite comfortable on longer drives, the CLA's rear quarters aren't nearly as accommodating. The seats themselves are well-shaped and supportive, but the sloping roof line that gives the CLA its distinctive profile also translates to tight headroom for 6-footers, and the legroom situation isn't much better. The CLA is also ill-equipped for small children. The rear seat's non-removable headrests can make forward-facing car seat fitment tricky, and those small rear doors make it tough to get little ones in and out." -- Edmunds
  • "The Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class feels intimate on the inside, especially when compared to the C-Class sedan - which actually has a smaller overall footprint but a bigger interior. Credit (or criticize) the CLA's low-slung roofline for the counterintuitive discrepancy." -- Kelley Blue Book (2014)
  • "And the wind-cheating design has the secondary benefit of keeping things quiet. We could hardly hear any wind noise, even at highway speeds." -- Popular Mechanics (2014)

Interior Features

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class comes standard with Bluetooth, a USB port, HD Radio, Mercedes’ mbrace2 telematics and information system (subscription required to access apps like Google and Facebook, as well as turn-by-turn directions and emergency assistance), rain-sensing windshield wipers, dual-zone automatic climate control, a knob-based infotainment system with a 7-inch display, forward collision warning and attention assist, which monitors signs of driver drowsiness and alerts you if it thinks you are about to fall asleep. Available features include a panoramic moonroof, blind spot monitoring, parallel park assist, a rearview camera, front and rear parking sensors, lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control, Mercedes’ COMAND infotainment system with navigation and an 8-inch high-resolution screen, a Harman Kardon audio system, a DVD player and satellite radio.

Critics appreciate that the standard infotainment system now comes with a 7-inch display, as opposed to the 5.8-inch display in the 2014 model. However, they think it looks somewhat out of place high up on the dashboard, and they add that the COMAND infotainment system has complicated menus. Auto writers say the Bluetooth pairing works very well with multiple devices, and that controls are well-organized on the console. Some feel the gear shifter mounted to the steering wheel column takes time to adjust to.

See 2015 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class specs »

  • "One of the interior's weak spots is the display screen for the COMAND electronics interface, which looks like an aftermarket addition as it's perched high on the dash. On the upside, the standard screen is larger this year (it's now 7 inches versus 5.8 in 2014) and easy to read. It also takes some time to get used to selecting gears with a column-mounted stalk rather than a traditional console shifter." -- Edmunds
  • "After fumbling through menus presented by Mercedes-Benz's aggravating Comand electronics system, the car eventually paired with, and faithfully retained connections to, both a Windows Phone and an iPhone. It wasn't necessary to identify one as the default or priority phone. Whichever phone was making or receiving a call was the one the car routed to a hands-free system. The system was quick to pick up where it left off, without any instructions or switch-flipping, on whatever Bluetooth programming a phone was piping in when the car was shut off. That's exceptional, in our experience." -- USA Today (2014)
  • "Controls and dials are sensibly placed, the layout is charming enough, but it's too heavily draped in plastics. The worries fade once you turn the key, however." -- Road and Track (2014)

Cargo

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class comes with 13.1 cubic feet of trunk space, which is fairly good for the class. Reviewers think the CLA-Class’ cargo area is spacious. A split-folding rear seat is standard.

  • "Surprisingly, though, the CLA has a significant amount of trunk space for the class with 13.1 cubic feet, while the Audi A3 checks in at 12.3 cubic feet." -- Edmunds
Review Last Updated: 1/30/15

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