This is the first ever Mercedes A-Class saloon, due to launch here early 2019.
The standard fourth-generation hatchback won’t be released until this June, but it’ll be joined by A-Class L Saloon (L for ‘long’, we presume) in the second half of the year in China, before reaching the UK next year. Pretty much everything about the car is identical to the standard A-Class up to the C-pillar, where the car opens out with a spacious boot.
The saloon shape means there’s 420 litre of boot space, 50 litres more than the hatchback, and the saloon is 187mm longer too, measuring at 4,609mm long. Unsurprisingly, width remains unchanged – at 1,796mm – but the saloon is 20mm taller at 1,460mm.
Wheelbase has been extended by 60mm to provide more kneeroom for rear passengers – something that is notoriously appreciated amongst Chinese buyers. Merc admits the saloon was developed primarily for the Chinese market, so it makes sense why it was unveiled at this week’s Auto China (aka the Beijing Motor Show).
The premium German car maker is immensely popular in China and in 2017, the country was the brand’s largest sales market, shifting around 590,000 vehicles, which is 25.9 per cent more than the year before.
Mercedes customers are significantly younger buyers in China too, compared to the average in Europe and the UK, so offering a more spacious take on a model that already has strong youth appeal can only boost Chinese sales.
UK engine range hasn’t been confirmed yet, but it will likely mimic that of the hatchback, with a 114bhp 1.5-litre diesel and a pair of petrols (161bhp 1.33-litre turbocharged, 221bhp two-litre turbo). Trim levels will probably adopt the same three-tier SE, Sport, AMG Line grade structure too.