Small Mercedes not quite A-Class - MERCEDES A CLASS Car Review

Review

Added: 26 Aug 2008
Last update:

OWNERS love Mercedes small A-Class but I feel that the car is rather over-rated for the money.

They are more expensive than anything else at that size, not very pretty and very expensive to fix when they go wrong.

They hold value well but thats not so good when buying secondhand and other similar cars are much cheaper and more versatile.

The A-Class is front engined and front wheel drive with a very strong 'sandwich' floorpan which has won many accolades.

There were 1.4, 1.6, 1.9 and 2.1-litre petrol engines before 2004 with power ranging from 82 to 140bhp.

The 1.7 CDi turbo diesel has 75, 90 or 95bhp and is capable of an excellent 50mpg.

All engines have a five speed manual gearbox and the 1.6 was available with a four speed tiptronic auto.

The real downside is a harsh and often uncomfortable ride - especially in the earlier cars. To me, when a car costs this much, the buyer has a right to expect better.

Interior

The seats can be moved around inside the cabin, folded or completely removed but three adults are a tight squeeze in the back.

The smallest Mercedes has fair interior space, a high driving position and good, safe handling.

FAST FACTS

Mercedes A-Class 1.6

Price: Pay about s2,400 for an 00 X-reg Classic, s4,200 for an 02 52-reg Avantgarde or s5,000 for an 04 54-reg Classic

Mechanical: 102bhp, 1,598cc, 4cyl petrol engine driving front wheels via 5spd manual gearbox

Max speed: 114mph

0-62mph: 11.5 secs

Combined mpg: 36

Insurance group: 6

Marks: 7/10

Main rival: Renault Scenic

Words: Peter Hayward

Keywords: mercedes, a class