Are there gear shift issues or sputtering with GLA 250 - Mercedes GLA Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 09-25-2019, 07:09 PM Thread Starter
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Are there gear shift issues or sputtering with GLA 250

Hi everyone. I just joined this forum. I am most likely buying a new GLA 250 in Nov or Dec. I am not sure whether to get a 2019 or 2020. My question is... I test drove the 2020 yesterday, and it had a slowness and sputtering when starting up at traffic lights and changing speed. I thought it might be a gear shift issue and am wondering if this new car simply had a flaw. I should have said something to the salesman but he was very pushy (trying to get me to buy on the spot) so I said nothing to him. I drove a new 2019 about two months ago at a different dealership and it was totally perfect. Because of the experience yesterday, I am a little nervous about buying this car and I was super excited until yesterday. Any advice, ideas, etc. Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 9 Old 09-25-2019, 09:04 PM
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2015 models had hesitation that was debatable between turbo lag and DCT transmission lag. The general opinion became transmission.

2016 modified the gearing to reduce the lag but we are still dealing with a small displacement motor and effectively a manual transmission.

In other words ... Expect some lag.

That being said, since you have driven a 2019 as well as the 2020 and you did not see a problem with the first, I would suspect some sort of a problem with the newer car.

Hopefully MB has not made changes (fuel economy and emissions can be driving forces in undesirable alterations) to diminish performance. But I yield to those who have driven a 2020 or may know more details.

Good luck with your decision.
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post #3 of 9 Old 09-26-2019, 07:16 AM
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There's a good deal of off-the-line lag in the 2018 GLA 250 as well. However, it does depend on the dynamic driving mode selected. In Sport mode, which raises the idle to help 'pre-spool' the turbo among other things, the lag is significantly reduced. Perhaps the 2019 you drove was in Sport mode and the 2020 in Eco/Comfort mode? A 'smart' salesperson will select Sport, and turn off auto start/stop, to best showcase the product.

Also keep in mind that as Wayne cites it's a dual-clutch transmission, which is essentially a computer controlled manual. In the computer's constant attempt to predict the next gear need (preset on the second clutch) it sometimes gets confused when we humans do something unusual, such as a rolling stop with sudden acceleration, and hence some mechanical lag until the computer sorts it out.

But it could just be Benz' et al ever striving for better fuel economy over performance and hence a further tweak of the computer algorithms to that end.
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Last edited by Huey52; 09-26-2019 at 07:25 AM.
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post #4 of 9 Old 09-26-2019, 02:34 PM
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I rarely drive in COMFORT mode in my GLA45 because of the severe lag from stop. I will use COMFORT in heavy traffic sometimes but it quickly gets annoying in everyday driving. Occasionally I have found a dangerous lack of response when pulling out from stop so I just don't do it.
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post #5 of 9 Old 09-26-2019, 05:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne View Post
2015 models had hesitation that was debatable between turbo lag and DCT transmission lag. The general opinion became transmission.

2016 modified the gearing to reduce the lag but we are still dealing with a small displacement motor and effectively a manual transmission.

In other words ... Expect some lag.

That being said, since you have driven a 2019 as well as the 2020 and you did not see a problem with the first, I would suspect some sort of a problem with the newer car.

Hopefully MB has not made changes (fuel economy and emissions can be driving forces in undesirable alterations) to diminish performance. But I yield to those who have driven a 2020 or may know more details.

Good luck with your decision.
DCT work (almost) exactly like a manual clutch. They need to manage how much and what speed the clutch is releasing. They have to manage the throttle vs the clutch release to get a smooth start. It is just like when you drive a manual car, you can't floor it and release dump the clutch and expecting a smooth start.

For the turbo lag, the 250 have fairly low turbo lag in my opinion. If you have already driven a 45 AMG, now you know what is real (high) turbo lag
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post #6 of 9 Old 09-28-2019, 06:36 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all of the responses, everyone.
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post #7 of 9 Old 09-28-2019, 06:41 PM
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post #8 of 9 Old Yesterday, 11:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Huey52 View Post
There's a good deal of off-the-line lag in the 2018 GLA 250 as well. However, it does depend on the dynamic driving mode selected. In Sport mode, which raises the idle to help 'pre-spool' the turbo among other things, the lag is significantly reduced. Perhaps the 2019 you drove was in Sport mode and the 2020 in Eco/Comfort mode? A 'smart' salesperson will select Sport, and turn off auto start/stop, to best showcase the product.

Good theory. I think it's also possible it was the other way around... that the first time she drove it was in Comfort, and the second time it was in Sport mode. I have a 2015 GLA 45, and I'm not sure this is the same in the 250, but in my car when it's in Sport mode it is tuned in such a way that the exhaust burbles. Most of us like that, but it's possible that someone unfamiliar with that type of exhaust tuning would describe it as a sputter.


CharlotteAnne, my apologies if that guess is off-base. I just thought it worth raising as another possibility.
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post #9 of 9 Old Today, 11:24 AM
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You can also set a custom mode (at least on my 2016). I use this to put the car in sport mode which helps with acceleration lag, changes steering dynamics, and also shuts off the stupid engine off/on feature. Car seems to accelerate just fine.

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