Mercedes-Benz GLA45 AMG – 2017 South Seas Blue - Early Review - Mercedes GLA Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 12-05-2016, 11:54 PM Thread Starter
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Talking Mercedes-Benz GLA45 AMG – 2017 South Seas Blue - Early Review

So I’m just about to hit 1000km on this car so I feel I can give it at least a reasonable review and the mandatory photos to show it off. =D

As a background my “Car Garage” previously included chronologically: Acura RSX - 2004, VW GTI – 2009 and BMW 328xdrive – 2013. My wife has had a Mazda 3, Honda Pilot, Infiniti EX35, and BMW X3.

Unfortunately I don't have all the codes of what my car has as features but here in Canada it's Premium, Premium Plus, Exclusive, Metallic Paint.

Exterior – I am delighted to say that I did not expect the car to look this good (to my eyes) in SSB. There are lots of GLA 250s where I live but very few GLA45s so I had almost “forgotten” just how great the stance of the 45 is. Essentially it’s a hot hatch on steroids and I love that. The colour is of course completely flashy, but not so much that it screams it. I went with the grey callipers as I thought the red ones would make one too many colours due to my interior choice. The 19’s look great and I do wonder if the 20s would be even better but it was a ride comfort choice really. I am currently on 18s from GTS with Bridgestone Blizzaks 225/55R18.

Interior – Once again I am very impressed with the fit and finish. To be honest, I was actually prepared for a pretty average interior (again, forgetting my test drives a bit) but it is every nice and more than does the job for me. I am very happy with the two-tone Sahara Beige interior. It really “pops” when you open the door and I think works very well with the car. One of my few dislikes is the cheap hard plastic that is against your knee and below the vents. The seating position is great and plenty of head room. Seats are very comfortable. Command screen reminds me of the iDrive screen so I’m not one of those people that feels it looks like an afterthought iPad. On Command, the resolution is great and it’s relatively easy to get used to. There are some things that it does better (selecting the next station is just a rotation and not a rotation and press of the controller) and some worse (BMW has those awesome 8 preset buttons that you can set for nav/phone/text messages). It is a smaller vehicle than the BMW and more the size of my GTI which works for me, my wife and toddler (although I don’t keep a child seat in the car). It is big enough to throw my hockey bag in the hatch and pads and stick in the rear seat. If I had a second child I might need a little bigger vehicle. I have also been so happy that so far (knock on wood) there are Zero rattles. I’m praying it stays this way but I know our Canadian temperature extremes play havoc on the interiors so we’ll see how this goes.

Drivetrain – Oh that engine!! What a wonderful piece of engineering. Thank you to Nico Kruger (the AMG engine builder) for putting a smile on my face every time I turn on the car. The power delivery is a little light at less than 3000 rpm but man does it come alive after that. It just keeps going and pulling although I’m still being wimpy due to the break-in period. The DCT is good, with quick shifts and really great about downshifting as I go into a turn. One annoyance here is a clunking (very light but audible) that I hear from 2nd to 1st?? as I come to a stop. To be fair I think the cold weather and short drives seem to bring this out the most but it’s a little unbecoming at 65 grand. I went with the “regular” exhaust and I have zero complaints. I still get the lovely burbles and farts with quick up/down shifts and it’s currently more than loud enough for me.

Ride and Handling
– This is the best handling car I have ever owned. No question. It makes the BMW seem like a Toyota Camry. It’s just so planted, flat on the corners and still a pliable enough ride that I don’t get any crashing of the suspension over our notorious potholes. I think this may be an effect of the 19s and 18s for winter that I’m currently on.

Steering – A little too light for me at low speeds but weighs up nicely with speed. Very happy with it. It lacks great tactile feedback but that is not unexpected with the electric steering.

Dealership and Sales Consultant
– So there was quite a bit of drama with the price of my car. When I signed the deal in May, interest rates were at 2.9% and residual was at 53%. When it was time to pick it up the interest rate was at 3.9 percent and the residual down to 51%. This meant a 60 dollar difference in the lease which annoyed me to no end. My sales consultant was excellent though, advocated for me and got me a fabulous deal. The dealership was MB Thornhill and if anyone needs a good sales consultant please PM me (I have no conflict of interest to declare, he was just a really good guy). Oh and in addition we got not only one but two of the holy grail AMG key fobs!

Random Negatives – Really a few tiny niggling things. The seats don’t change position based on what key you use (ie. Position one for key one, position two for number two). The Bimmers did that and so did the Infiniti. The command and knob for driving mode are too close together, sometime I mean to change the station and instead I put it in sport. Should be different feel IMO.

Miscellaneous – I purchased the AMG lock pins as I absolutely abhor the standard ones. I need to pick them up still and I’m nervous about wrecking something when I install them so if anyone has any advice let me know.

Overall – this is the happiest an inanimate object has ever made me. I look forward to driving it, I give it longing looks walking away from it and I couldn’t be more excited to lease it for 44.5 more months.

If you have any questions or comments let me know! Sorry about the low res pics but that's all the forum could handle.
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post #2 of 13 Old 12-06-2016, 12:39 AM
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Sweet ride, welcome to the forums


ditto on the turning the wrong knobs...

for the pins

1)wrap the old plastic ones with some cloth and turn it counterclockwise (i think), takes some force to break off the glue, save it for later when you return the car and ebay the metal pins.2
2) remove the glue residue from the threads on the car, they will not allow the new pins to screw down all the way/resist threading
3) you can hand screw the new pins, could use threadlock but i dont see the need

Last edited by m-type; 12-06-2016 at 12:44 AM.
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post #3 of 13 Old 12-06-2016, 01:53 AM
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Beautiful car. I love the two tone interior!!!

M-type has the pin change down. But I did a variation. I was able to remove three with my fingers and used vice grips that I set to not squeeze the last pin but to interlock with the channels in the pin. It then came off easily. The binding glue comes off with a quick rub with your fingers.

I find it helps me to accept things if I know the why ...

MB decided for safety that any motion should require operator participation. This includes key recognition. Why?

I sit closer to the steering wheel than Pam. I like to keep my elbows at about 90 degrees for quick steering. When I tapped my seat memory setting in her Lexus I would get lifted up, pushed forward, jammed into the steering wheel, and then finally lowered down to allow space. Not nice and, if driving, this could cause at least a partial loss of control. So Lexus decided memory settings would only work if in Park.

I'm with you on the key position. While I'm the only driver in my Porsche, I can (could) still use the key position to move the seat back for ingress and then use a different memory setting to select my driving position. Full disclosure ... this sounds like a good idea, I thought I'd do this, but I don't bother ... I'd hate to crush a water bottle or worse as the seat auto moved.

And I'm constantly needing to remember when getting out of Pam's car to reset the seat for her to ease her ingress. If the key would auto set for her it would be nicer. As long as nothing got crushed in the process!

MB, are you listening?
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post #4 of 13 Old 12-06-2016, 09:03 AM Thread Starter
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Sweet ride, welcome to the forums


ditto on the turning the wrong knobs...

for the pins

1)wrap the old plastic ones with some cloth and turn it counterclockwise (i think), takes some force to break off the glue, save it for later when you return the car and ebay the metal pins.2
2) remove the glue residue from the threads on the car, they will not allow the new pins to screw down all the way/resist threading
3) you can hand screw the new pins, could use threadlock but i dont see the need
Perfect, thanks m-type! Sounds like a few of you have done it without too much trouble.

Wayne, what you are saying about movement with human involvement makes sense it's just one of those luxuries you get used to. But to be honest I do about 99% of the driving on the GLA45 so it should not be a huge issue. Thanks for the tip on the lock pin.

We just got some nice wet snow around here that then froze up pretty well. The car and tire combo have done a great job in providing solid grip. It amazes me that a car that can do 0-60 in 4.5 seconds can be this easy to drive in low traction environments.
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post #5 of 13 Old 12-07-2016, 12:53 PM
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Congrats on the SSB color i've been told many times at car gatherings that people had no clue that Mercedes actually had a color like that.

2015 GLA45 delivered April 10, 2015
South Seas Blue Metallic with Crystal Grey Leather Interior
AMG Sport Seats and Steering Wheel
19" AMG Wheels
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post #6 of 13 Old 12-07-2016, 02:10 PM
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Congratulations on the South Seas Blue. I love mine. I opted for a little more angry/aggressive look with my interior. Yours looks very elegant.


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post #7 of 13 Old 12-07-2016, 09:35 PM Thread Starter
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Congrats on the SSB color i've been told many times at car gatherings that people had no clue that Mercedes actually had a color like that.
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Originally Posted by c0gla45 View Post
Congratulations on the South Seas Blue. I love mine. I opted for a little more angry/aggressive look with my interior. Yours looks very elegant.


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Thanks gentlemen, I must admit I have ogled both your cars. Specially SSBGLA45's as I was anxious about not getting to see the colour in real life. That's what great about these forums, you would never see another SSB where I live but thanks to people taking the time to put up their pics I made the great choice.

c0gla45 - Any chance you have some shots of your interior? I went with the two tone as I've always loved that look but the dymaca looked amazing when I did my test drive.
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post #8 of 13 Old 12-08-2016, 10:33 AM
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Great review!
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post #9 of 13 Old 12-22-2016, 12:48 AM
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Perfect, thanks m-type! Sounds like a few of you have done it without too much trouble.

Wayne, what you are saying about movement with human involvement makes sense it's just one of those luxuries you get used to. But to be honest I do about 99% of the driving on the GLA45 so it should not be a huge issue. Thanks for the tip on the lock pin.

We just got some nice wet snow around here that then froze up pretty well. The car and tire combo have done a great job in providing solid grip. It amazes me that a car that can do 0-60 in 4.5 seconds can be this easy to drive in low traction environments.
hey man, saw ur powertrain review, wow im surprised even thee 17s have that transmission clunk issue, which is categorized as "normal driving condition" by dealerships lol. my 15 has it too, a noise when approaching stop from 2nd to 1st. its kinda annoying when im coming to a stop, hearing a bit of that squeaky brake and then a clunk from transmission. anyway, grats on the car. great vehicle, huge boost from turbo .

2015 GLA 45 AMG
premium, premium+, amg exclusive package, amg driver's package, amg black 20" 10spoke wheels, H73 carbon fibre trim
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post #10 of 13 Old 12-22-2016, 07:49 AM
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Welcome aboard! Beautiful GLA! I do like the SSB color, but for other reasons we had to go with Black, Silver or White and my wife decided for a change and went with black. Our last few cars have been white, so it's been a stark change. Her last car was a Lexus, and we do miss the auto adjusting of the driver's seat. The Lexus would fully retract the driver's seat when the car was shut off, and would adjust it based on the key held by the driver. I have thought about using the 3rd memory button to set the driver's seat to the full back position, but since you have to hold the button till the adjustment is complete, I don't know how effective it would be. The Lexus only took a momentary push of the memory button and it did the rest. I had to laugh when I read your comment: "this is the happiest an inanimate object has ever made me" I'm not sure I would classify the GLA45 as inanimate! LOL!

Paul...
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2016 GLA250, Night Black/Ash
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