CLA Shooting Brake added to compact car family
- More than four million A-Class, B-Class, CLA and GLA models delivered to customers since 1997
- Successful launch of the CLA Shooting Brake in Germany with 110,000 visitors and 1,700 test drives
- Significant rejuvenation of the customer structure of Mercedes-Benz thanks to new compact models
- Conquest rate for compact cars at around 50% in Germany and Western Europe
Stuttgart – The success story of the Mercedes-Benz compact cars began in 1997 with the launch of the A-Class. Since then, over four million customers have opted for an A-Class, B-Class, CLA or GLA.
The CLA Shooting Brake, the youngest member of the compact car family of Mercedes-Benz, celebrated its launch at the weekend. It proved to be a real crowd-puller with 110,000 visits to dealers in Germany and 1,700 test drives.
“The CLA Shooting Brake is the perfect addition to our compact car family and will intrigue many customers with its unique design – both private and fleet customers,” says Ola Källenius, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG, responsible for Mercedes-Benz Cars Marketing & Sales. “The response to our compact cars has been excellent. Last year, global sales of our compact cars increased by 25% to a record level of more than 463,000 units,” adds Källenius.
The A-Class, B-Class, CLA and GLA are especially popular on the home market of Mercedes-Benz. More than one in every five compact cars was sold to customers in Germany last year. In 2014, sales in this segment grew by over 36% in China and by over 55% in Great Britain. Unit sales in the USA more than doubled.
Almost every second driver of a Mercedes-Benz compact car in Germany and Western Europe was previously the owner of a vehicle from another brand.
The new generation A-Class celebrated its launch in September 2012. Due to its global success, the A-Class has been produced not only in Rastatt, but, since August 2013, also by the Finnish production specialist Valmet Automotive. Last year, its popularity increased by over 46% in Great Britain, and even by over 51% in the growth market China. However, most A-Class models are still delivered to customers in Germany.
The new B-Class, including the B-Class Electric Drive, has been available since 2014. In the J.D. Power satisfaction survey, the B-Class came top of its segment in 2014 with a score of 82.4%.
The CLA, which was launched in 2013, was the first compact car offered by Mercedes-Benz in the USA. For many Americans, the CLA is the entry model into the world of Mercedes-Benz. Almost every third CLA produced in Kecskemét, Hungary, is delivered to customers in the USA, the biggest market for the coupé.
The majority of all GLA were sold to customers in Germany and the USA in 2014, the launch year of the model. The GLA – alongside the CLA and the B-Class – was voted the value retention champion in its class by “Focus Online” and the market research institute “Bähr & Fess Forecast” in 2014.
The Mercedes-Benz brand has undergone a noticeable rejuvenation since the introduction of the new compact models. The average age of a European driver of the new generation A-Class is nowadays more than ten years lower than the age of a driver of the previous series. In China, the average age is 34 years. The CLA appeals primarily to a young, childless customer group, whereas the B-Class is popular mainly among young families.
Customer demands on Mercedes-Benz compact cars are diverse: While CLA and A-Class owners focus mainly on driving pleasure, sportiness and technological advance; B-Class customers attach particular importance to functionality, comfort and spaciousness. Common to all of them is a strong desire for progressive and expressive design.
As far as the interior is concerned, the Active Parking Assist as well as the Light and Sight package are especially popular. Many drivers are also extremely keen on the Panoramic Roof, the seat heating and Bi-Xenon headlamps.
With regard to engines, global customer preferences are diverse: Whereas the 180 engines (petrol and diesel) are especially popular among A-Class and B-Class purchasers, most CLA customers opt for the CLA 250 and the CLA 250 4MATIC. Many GLA buyers choose the GLA 250 4MATIC.