We spent some time with the 2023 A-Class to understand whether Mercedes-Benz has done enough.
The A-Class serves as a gateway to the realm of Mercedes-Benz, serving as the most affordable entry into the world of the 'three-pointed star’. With the foundation laid by the A-Class sedan, the 2023 update introduces subtle enhancements to its design and features, while continuing to employ just a single, fully loaded petrol powertrain. We spent some time with the compact sedan recently to understand whether Mercedes-Benz has done enough.
The exterior changes are subtle, and you might need to look closely a few times to notice them. The Daylight Running Lights get a bit slimmer, which adds a touch of style. But the real attention-grabber is the new grille. It's got a cool honeycomb pattern and a sleeker chrome line. These changes aren't huge, but they do make the car look surprisingly new.
The side of the car pretty much looks the same, except for the new design on the 17-inch wheels. The back of the car now reminds me a lot of the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class because of the redone taillights. They make the car look classy and fancy at the same time. There's still a lot of shiny chrome all around. Personally, I think it would've been better if Mercedes had more exciting colors to choose from instead of just the plain ones like Polar White. The other options are Cosmos Black, Iridium Silver, and Mountain Grey.
Inside the A200's cabin, you'll find a sense of luxury that's quite surprising for an entry-level car. The 2023 update keeps that luxury feeling while adding modern technology that's easy to use. The steering wheel gets a makeover with touch control panels that take the place of regular buttons. One cool new feature is wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, so you don't need to plug in your phone anymore.
And if your devices always need charging, Mercedes has boosted the USB charging power by 20 per cent, which is impressive. But there's one downside. They got rid of the touchpad, which leaves a small area that doesn't seem very useful for putting your phone or wallet. It's more like a decoration now, which is a bit of a letdown.
The front seats wrap around passengers comfortably, giving a nice supportive feeling. But when you look at the back seat area, you can tell that the A-Class comes from a smaller sedan design. There's enough space for your legs, which is good if you're sitting in the back while someone else drives. But the trade-off is that there's not a lot of room above your head, and the windows on the sides are kind of small too. This might make things a bit tight for people sitting in the back.
When it comes to safety, the A-Class has seven airbags and important systems like ABS, ESP, and EBD that keep watch. There's also an automatic brake assist, which jumps in quickly if there's a chance of a collision at low speeds. This gives you even more protection.
However, the A200 faces a real challenge when it comes to its mechanical abilities. It has a 1.3-litre, four-cylinder turbocharged engine that the company worked on with Renault. This engine gives the A200 161 bhp and 270 Nm of peak torque. When you drive it, you'll find that it performs decently, especially for city driving. It's smooth and refined, and the 7-speed automatic gearbox makes the ride easy. But if you want a more exciting drive, you might notice that the engine has its limits. The engine isn't naturally energetic, and as you rev it up, it sounds strained and buzzy.
161 bhp @5500 rpm
270 Nm @2000-3500 rpm
In terms of performance, the A200 does the 0-100 kmph run in 8.3 seconds, with a top speed of 230 kmph, which are impressive numbers, especially considering that the car weighs almost 2 tonnes.
The A200's suspension manages to balance comfort and toughness. It handles city roads smoothly at slower speeds, keeping passengers comfortable even when the road isn't great. But when you start going faster on the highway, there's a problem: road noise. The A-Class in India has a higher suspension to deal with past issues of ground clearance. Unfortunately, this also makes more room for noise from the road. It kind of spoils what could otherwise be a peaceful ride.
Priced at Rs. 45.80 lakh (ex-showroom), the 2023 Mercedes-Benz A-Class stands as a symbol of luxury. Despite some occasional downsides like the noisy highway experience and the engine's moderate power, it's still an appealing choice.
Prices (ex-showroom, India)
2023 Mercedes-Benz A-Class
BMW 2 Series GC
Rs. 45.80 lakh
Rs. 43.50–Rs. 45.50 lakh
Rs. 43.85–Rs. 51.85 lakh
Rs. 45.50 lakh
Rs. 46.17 lakh
Wrapped in Mercedes' well-known sense of sophistication and durability, this A-Class gives you an accessible way to step into the world of the three-pointed star. Alternatively, you can even opt for similarly priced sedans such as the BMW 2 Series Gran Coupé, the Audi A4, and even the Toyota Camry.
Photography By: Apoorv Choudhary
Car & Bike reviews
Matter Aera 5000 Review - The Perfect Electric Bike?
Arun Mohan Nadar Feb 8, 2024
OnePlus 12R Review: Perfectly Balanced
Siddharth Chauhan Feb 5, 2024
Vivo X100 Review: A Complete Package
Siddharth Chauhan Jan 30, 2024
2024 Mercedes-Benz GLA Review: The Small SUV With BIG ambitions
Ameya Naik Jan 30, 2024
2024 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 4Matic+ Coupe Review: Best From The Rest?
Pratik Rakshit Jan 29, 2024
All Car & Bike reviews