Parkers overall rating: 4.2 out of 5 4.2
  • Excellent driving position with good visibility
  • Boot space, seats up almost as good as C-Class estate
  • Rear legroom very impressive for two people

The larger Mercedes GLB remains a more spacious and practical offering, but this new GLA has benefitted enormously from its shift to becoming a genuine SUV, the interior hugely more accommodating, as well as better-finished. It's a little bit shorter than the last GLA but thanks to better packaging still has more space inside, particularly in terms of rear legroom and bootspace – the latter up 14 litres to 435 litres.

You also sit up higher and more upright than before as well, in a position 140mm loftier than an A-Class for a better view of the road ahead. The windscreen pillars have been given a new shape to help you get the best view out, too.

A longer wheelbase (the distance between front and rear axles) means an extra 110mm of rear legroom – this is night and day better than it was in the old car, due to a combination of its greater height - the body is some 10cm taller - as well as the new model's more upright sides. It feels proportionally more like a larger  B-Class MPV inside than A-Class, which is a good thing.

In the rear, the seats can be moved forward or back by 140mm and the backrest adjusted to near vertical, in order to maximise bootspace. A 60:40 rear seat folding split is standard, with an even more versatile 40:20:40 split available as an option. A height-adjustable boot floor is standard-fit, too.

There's still a powered tailgate available, but one very cool feature is the new car wash function – which folds the door mirrors, closes the windows and roof, turns off the rain sensor, and sets the climate control to recirculate, all with one press of a single button.

Will it fit in my garage?

  • Height: 1,611mm
  • Height with tailgate open: 2,119mm
  • Width: 1,834mm (without mirrors folded)
  • Length: 4,410mm (4,529mm with towbar)

Safety

  • There's a raft of cutting-edge safety equipment
  • Yet to be tested by Euro NCAP, but likely to be five stars
  • Some very clever camera technology

It hasn't been tested by Euro NCAP yet, but the GLA is likely to match the five-star score of the A-Class it's based on. Benefitting from that car's technology means the GLA can boast a similarly high level of driver assistance. Being based on a car with a five star Euro NCAP rating means this SUV should fare quite well too.

We won't know for sure what the UK specification includes until closer to the launch, but the GLA's optional Driving Assistance Package is likely to include:

  • Active Distance Assist Distronic
    Adaptive cruise control able to brake for stationary vehicles and 'glide' in eco mode
  • Active Steer Assist and Lane Change Assist
    Keeps you in your lane under normal driving conditions and helps steers left or right in response to the indicators
  • Active Emergency Braking Assist
    Automatically unlocks the doors and starts an SOS call in the event of a crash
  • Active Speed Limit Assist
    Adjusts the cruise control speed to the prevailing conditions, including changes in speed limit, bends,roundabout and exit ramps
  • Blind Spot Assist
    Able to pick up cars and bicycles, and works when the car is stationary with the drive about to open the door
  • Crosswalk Assist
    Spots pedestrians at zebra crossings and warns the driver
  • Active Brake Assist 
    With cross-traffic function - this brakes the vehicle to avoid collisions in front, but also from crossing vehicles and cyclists

We got a bit frustrated by the fact you deactivate every unwanted aid after every restart of the car - and the safety systems appear to have developed something of a life of their own.

When the car approaches a junction, the front camera zooms in closer, while tailgaters activate the rear camera, and before you arrive at a waypoint, the sat-nav brings in arrows, pointers, street names and house numbers.

Basic equipment

The basic equipment list includes equipment that is standard across all versions of the Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class.

  • 3x3 point rear seat belts
  • ABS
  • Alarm
  • Alloy wheels
  • Audio remote
  • Body coloured bumpers
  • Cruise control
  • Driver`s airbag
  • Electric mirrors
  • Folding rear seats
  • Front electric windows
  • Heated mirrors
  • Heated seats
  • Isofix child seat anchor points
  • Parking sensors
  • Partial leather seat trim
  • PAS
  • Passenger`s airbag
  • Rear electric windows
  • Remote locking
  • Roof rails
  • Sat Nav
  • Service indicator
  • Side airbags
  • Steering wheel rake adjustment
  • Steering wheel reach adjustment
  • Traction control

Equipment by trim level

To view equipment options for a specific trim level, please select from the following list:

Equipment included on some trim levels
  • Electric driver`s seat
  • Electric passenger`s seat
  • Electric sunroof
  • Height adjustable drivers seat
  • Lumbar support
  • Sports seats

AMG Line equipment

AMG Line standard equipment
  • Sports seats
AMG Line optional equipment
  • Electric driver`s seat
  • Electric passenger`s seat
  • Electric sunroof
  • Height adjustable drivers seat
  • Lumbar support

Sport equipment

Sport standard equipment
Same as basic equipment
Sport optional equipment
None available