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The CLA is out, what does this mean, strange foreshadowing of GLA?

7866 Views 14 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  Adolini
CLAs are now in dealers and there may be a few things we can learn for the CLA in advance of the GLA's debut.

First things first the CLA forums have had plenty of chatter about how wide, or how not wide the CLA is. Width on the CLA is 1,777 mm, while the GLA is expected to show up 1,804 mm wide. Thats a delta of 27 mm or 2.7 cm or 1 inch. So i suggest going to see the CLA if you have width concerns.

Secondly and much graver than the first is the CLA seems to have strange panel gaps inside the vehicle. Here are a few pics i pulled from one of the CLA forums:

notice the piece of sheet metal sticking through.... compare the open door picture with an open E-class door, see how the door panel extends to the end of the door on the E-class but on the CLA it stops well short...

Take from this what you want, to be honest panel gaps were the one thing I did not expect from Mercedes....

CLA interior door gap - Mercedes CLA Forum
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The last time we saw panel gap issues (that I know of) from Merc, was on the M class when it was first introduced. Fortunately they of course rectified it. My quiet concern with the CLA is the same concern I have whenever something brand spanking new comes to market, be it the first iPhone, the CLA, etc., and that is the overarching problem of "first year of release" models having a "beta" or "release" candidate" taste to them.

They invariably still need a few tweaks. I suspect these panel gap issues will disappear on the 2015 models at the outside latest. Merc may roll their eyes at suggestions of a sub-30k Merc sullying the brand, but they certainly won't sit idle if their build quality reputation has a ***** in its armor.

The silver lining in all of this? We may luck out, since we're looking at the GLA. The CLA is so similar that it may take the bullet for the GLA's own "release candidate" taste. In other words, if they fix this panel issue on the CLA before the GLA is released, I don't see the problem suddenly resurrecting itself on the GLA. Merc will take what they learn from the CLA (and A Class), and apply it to all Merc cars using the A platform.

I haven't said this, but from the start I've actually considered waiting until the second model year before looking into purchasing a GLA. I do this with everything: TV's, phones, etc.. First year buyers are beta testers, whether they or the company wish to admit it or not.
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