Mercedes-Benz Reveals 2015 GLA Ahead of Official Debut

Mercedes has opted to reveal its new-for-2015 GLA before its official debut at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show in September. Sharing a platform with the new A-Class and CLA-Class, the GLA will be the fifth SUV/crossover in the Mercedes lineup when it arrives in showrooms this fall.

2015-mercedes-GLA

Set to do battle with the Audi Q3, BMW X1 and the Range Rover Evoque, the new 2015 Mercedes-Benz GLA is sharp and muscular, stretching 173.9 inches in length and 58.8 inches high. It will be the first Mercedes SUV available with the optional new-generation permanent all-wheel drive system (4MATIC) with fully variable torque distribution.

“With its striking features, the GLA embodies our progressive thinking and enthralls with its off-road proportions,” says Gorden Wagener, Vice President Design at Daimler AG. “The clearly defined surfaces convey power and serenity, and we have managed to combine as much emotional appeal as possible with as much clarity as necessary.”

Power comes from a 2.0-liter turbo 4-cylinder developing 208 hp and 258 lb ft of torque, good enough for a 6.4-second sprint to 60 mph before topping out at a lofty 145 mph. The engine is mated to a 7-speed dual clutch automatic transmission. Stop-start is standard. Suspension is McPherson struts in front and multilink rear. 18-inch wheels are standard, 19 inchers are optional.

“With the compact GLA we add a fifth attractive SUV variant to the Mercedes-Benz model portfolio in this constantly growing segment. The GLA impresses mainly with its progressive character and agile handling,” says Dr. Joachim Schmidt, Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing Mercedes-Benz Cars. “So I am very confident that the GLA with its fascinating design and high everyday practicality will fill many new customers with enthusiasm for the Mercedes-Benz brand.”

A host of the latest telematics and assistance systems are also available. Mercedes-Benz’s new-gen telematics platform, mbrace2, offers connectivity and the infotainment features fans have come to expect in a free-standing display that sits atop the dash. Collision Prevention Assist provides autonomous braking from speeds of up to 124 mph is the system detects an imminent collision. The system also brakes in response to stationary vehicles up to 18 mph, and can prevent rear-end collisions at speeds up to 12 mph. In addition, blind-spot detection, lane-keeping, park assist and adaptive cruise control are standard. Infotainment features include full smart phone integration, internet connectivity, applications such as Facebook and Twitter, and street-view on the navigation system.

The GLA250 4MATIC will appear at dealerships in the fall of 2014, and the front-drive GLA250 will follow in early 2015. Pricing has yet to be revealed so stay tuned.

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Mercedes-Benz Attention Assist for Long Monotonous Drives

Taking a road trip this summer? Will you be facing a long monotonous journey with night driving involved? Attention Assist, available on Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class models, can help by monitoring your attentiveness.

If the driver shows signs of fatigue or increasing inattentiveness, the assistant system will suggest taking a break. Watch the following video to find out more about the system and the technology behind how it works.

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Mercedes-Benz Launches 9-Speed Automatic Transmission

Mercedes has launched a new 9-speed automatic transmission and it makes its official production debut on the European market in the E350 BlueTEC. Named the 9G-Tronic, the new nine-speed is expected to improve fuel efficiency on the six-cylinder diesel to 44.38 mpg, making it the most efficient vehicle in its class.

Mercedes-Benz-E350-BlueTEC

Mercedes-Benz says the higher number of gears and the broader gear ratio spread help increase the drive comfort and “enable a significant enhancement to be achieved in terms of converting engine power into traction.” For example, the E 350 BlueTEC is able to drive at 75 mph in 9th gear with an engine speed of around only 1,350 rpm.

More gears also equal less noise as the engine revs lower, reducing external sounds by up to 4 dB(A). Mercedes says the new gearbox is lighter than its predecessor (the 7G-Tronic), despite having two additional gears and a maximum transferable torque of up to 737.5 lb-ft. The 9G-Tronic is also capable of skipping several gears when accelerating or decelerating, according to driving conditions.

The new 9G-Tronic will be suitable for both rear-wheel and front-wheel drives, as well as hybrid and plug-in hybrid drive systems. It is expected to be used in almost all model series and engines in the coming years.

European deliveries for the E 350 BlueTEC will begin in September 2013, with prices in Germany starting from €54,710 ($72,415) for the Saloon and €57,923 ($76,670) for the Estate. The new gearbox is expected to appear on North American shores in the 2015 CLS-Class next fall.

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Technology Highlights of the 2014 Mercedes-Benz S Class

The Mercedes-Benz S Class has always led the way with new technologies in the automotive sector for decades and with the launch of the next generation, the trend is set to continue. The new 2014 S Class features a host of new technologies but the big ticket items are the advanced safety technologies and autonomous driving ability. Yes, the new 2014 Mercedes-Benz S Class will be the first production vehicle that will be able to drive itself.

2014 Mercedes-Benz S Class

Safety was the primary area of focus for engineers as they developed the new S Class. There are a number of sensors (26 in total) around the car that monitor the vehicle’s surrounding in all directions. These sensors work together with the vehicle’s active braking system which can determine if the car is about to crash into an object, including moving ones such as a pedestrian, and alert the driver and even apply the brakes independently, if necessary.

But the focus wasn’t just about safety. The interior of the new S Class sees a dramatic improvement with its almost halo concept-level style and finish but in production form. Designers have added touches like added mood lighting, remote-controlled massage functions, and foldable work tables for rear passengers.

“Rather than being about safety or aesthetics, power or efficiency, comfort or dynamism, our aspirations were ‘the best or nothing’ in every respect. No other car stands for the Mercedes-Benz brand promise more than the S-Class,” said Dr Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars.

It is expected that sale of the 2014 S Class will begin this fall, initially in S550 guise. More versions including high-performance AMG models and a plug-in hybrid are expected within the following year.

Watch the following video for an overview of some of the features found on the new 2014 Mercedes-Benz S Class. Note that the European model is featured and some elements may not be available on versions delivered to North America.

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Walk around the new Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG in new video

Are you young, or young at heart? Does the mere thought of going from 0-60 mph in in approximately 4.5 seconds make the hairs on the back of your neck stand? Than the all-new Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG may just be the car for you.

We’ve already gone over the performance stats buyers of AMG’s latest creation can expect, so instead why not watch as Assistant Project Manager for AMG, Will Vetter, takes you for a walk around the all-new CLA45 AMG. In the video, Will goes over the important details that put the AMG in the CLA45 – from it’s standard dual clutch gearbox, to its massive brakes that help bring the 355-horsepower sedan to a halt. To keep up to date with the latest Mercedes-Benz news continue to follow the Mercedes-Benz of Plano blog.

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Mercedes-Benz unveils Concept GLA compact SUV in Shanghai

Shanghai, SUV

After introducing the swoopy CLA-Class sedan at the 2013 North American International Auto Show in January, the world can now look forward to the forthcoming next Mercedes-Benz A-Class family member – the GLA-Class SUV.

Officially a concept, the production model of the Concept GLA is bound to do battle with the likes of the BMW X1 SUV.

Outside and in the Concept GLA shares styling with the CLA-Class; however, where the CLA-Class’s styling can be described as sexy and flowing, the Concept GLA uses styling that is butch and wide. For America and its SUV-loving public, the Concept GLA’s butch and wide looks gives the car a terrific combination of SUV attributes and classic Mercedes-Benz design.

Interior, Shanghai, SUV

Being a concept car, the Concept GLA contains its fair share of imaginative gadgetry. Most notable are headlights that use laser technology. Practically, laser technology increases the headlights function of projecting light onto dark surfaces.  Yet, concept cars aren’t about being practical, and the laser headlamps on the Concept GLA can also project still and moving images onto surfaces such as a screen. Mercedes-Benz says that these images can be uploaded from the Internet, a hard drive or a cell phone.

Another fun element incorporated into the Concept GLA are a pair of HD video cameras that mount to the car’s roof racks. These cameras can be used as an image source for the Concept GLA’s laser headlamps; alternatively the cameras can be detached from the car’s roof racks so that the driver and his or her passenger’s can film trips made by foot, bike, kayak, etc.

While it’s unlikely the Concept GLA’s image projecting headlamps and roof rack mounted cameras will make it to production, the go anywhere attitude of the Concept GLA, as well as its expressive exterior design, are bound to show up at Mercedes-Benz showrooms in the future. To learn more about the forthcoming CLA-Class and Concept GLA keep following the Mercedes-Benz of Plano blog.

Image credit: Mercedes-Benz

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Mercedes-Benz C-Class to add convertible, diesel and hybrid models in the future

Mercedes-Benz Driving Academy Car

Mercedes-Benz is prepping an all-new C-Class for the 2015 model year, and the current coupe and sedan are about to be joined by an all-new Convertible variant, says Autoweek. Car and Driver has early spy shots of the new model, and though much of the car is covered by camouflage it is easy to spot the convertible friendly B-pillar-less window line of the future soft top C-Class.

Though the convertible is a nice addition to the C-Class lineup, the forthcoming diesel and hybrid variants are likely to garner more sales as the price of gas continues to rise. Not much is known about either vehicle, but Autoweek did find out that the C-Class hybrid is expected to show up sometime in 2015.

Standard power will come courtesy of a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine built in the United States at Nissan’s Dechard, Tennessee plant as part of a partnership between the two companies.

With the new CLA-Class bolstering entry-level Mercedes-Benz buyers, the C-Class is expected to maintain a level of prestige within the lineup and will not offer a competitor to the recently released entry-level BMW 320i.

Look for the all-new C-Class to make its debut at next year’s North American International Auto Show reports Autoweek. Until then, stop by Mercedes-Benz of Plano and take a look at the latest luxurious Mercedes-Benz models, including the recently refreshed 2013 Mercedes-Benz C-Class.

 

 

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