mercedes-Benz recently availed of the Geneva Motor Show to reveal their all new, sportier A-Class - a model that oozes the kind of appeal that many believe will propel them into a new, more youthful market segment when it arrives here in 2013.
Gone is the taller, more upright design of the present model replaced by a lower-slung body that sits some 18cm closer to the ground.
Built on the B-Class platform, the new A-Class will come in a range of petrol and turbo-diesel engines of which the one likely to grab the limelight here is a 1.8-litre diesel, seen as the greenest of them all with CO2 emissions of just 99g/km.
All engines offer an idle-stop system as standard and can be mated to a six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.
One feature certain to appeal is a facility that allows what might be termed ‘the i-class generation’ to connect up and use the full functionality of their iPhone Siri voice-activated units or play their iPad music and apps through the car’s infotainment system.
Front-wheel drive, the new A-Class has a new four-link rear suspension system with various settings on offer, including an optional sports suspension with Direct Steer. It will be offered in Urban and Sport trims with a wide range of options.
Electronic elements extend to safety with a collision warning system and adaptive brake assist amongst its standard features. Pre-Safe occupant protection is also available for the first time in an A-Class, with items like Attention Assist and Brake Hold coming as part of the mix.