DETROIT – The GLA-Class crossover that Mercedes-Benz first launched in 2013 is getting a styling makeover to make it look more aggressive and SUV-like.
The German automaker revealed an updated version of the compact GLA-Class on Sunday in Detroit on the eve of the North American International Auto Show.
The GLA was introduced in 2013 amid a boom in small, entry-level, luxury crossovers and was Mercedes’ first compact SUV.
In the U.S., it competes against at least 18 other small luxury crossovers and SUVs. In terms of sales, it is in the middle of the pack. Mercedes sold about 24,000 in the U.S. in 2016, a 4.1% decline from the previous year. It is outsold by models such as the Buick Encore, Lexus NX, Audi Q5 and Acura RDX.
For 2018, the GLA-Class gets modified bumpers, new wheel designs and the new attractive color “Canyon Beige.”
In the rear, Mercedes added an optional hands-free access that allows the owner to open and close the trunk with a foot movement, without using the one’s hands.
Inside, the 2018 GLA-Class gets new seat covers and trim parts as well as chromed control panels. The free-standing 8-inch media display is slim and is easily legible, as are the new gauges with red needles.
The vehicle also includes a 360-degree camera that records the direct surroundings of the car, which are either shown as a full-image depiction or in seven different split-screen views on the media display. Among them is also a virtual top view of the car – produced from the data of four cameras: front, reversing and one camera in each of the exterior mirrors.