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Juliet McGuire

A-Class Hatch or Sedan…which works better for you?

The first Mercedes-Benz A-Class to hit our shores was launched back in 2007 and it was, to say the least, not the greatest car ever produced. It struggled with things like the Moose Test which would see it topple over. It wasn’t exactly the most stylish looking car around. Fast forward to the third generation A-Class and things took a massive turn, for the best. It is now probably one of the best-looking cars in its segment, not to mention the most advanced.

You might remember this video:

And now, due to a buying-down trend, Mercedes-Benz has decided to bring the A-Class Sedan to South Africa and I could not be more thrilled. I am all about practicality, you see. This car gives customers an entry point to buying a Mercedes-Benz sedan. It is essentially the boot version of the hatch but offers just that much more practicality. So which one should you buy?

SHE’S GOT THE LOOK

If you watched the video above you will know how much I like the A-Class hatch. It is stylish and so technologically advanced that even I can’t understand half the stuff on offer (but then again, I am technically challenged). The design is probably its most striking feature. It didn’t need to change much from the third generation because it was almost as if it was beyond its years back then and only now are other players in this segment starting to catch up.

SEDAN FOR THE WIN

I am a practical girl at heart and where the hatch falls short, if anywhere, is in terms of practicality. The A-Class Sedan is the all-rounder. It is still stylish AF (and that is a hard thing to do for any car designer. Slapping a boot on a hatch often results in something rather ghastly), but with the added space of a boot, it means you never have to worry about how many bags you are packing for that weekend away (something you know I struggle with). It offers 45-litres more than the hatch.  

Which means it gives you a total of 420-litres of luggage capacity but the opening is also wide at 950 mm which means it makes loading things that much easier. Sure, the hatch, being a hatch, also makes things easy to load, but the Sedan does offer more in terms of overall space.

WHAT ELSE?

It has the lowest aerodynamic drag of all production vehicles worldwide. This translates to a low fuel consumption which is always high up on my priority list.

A-Class sedan interior

MBUX is standard. You remember Mercedes-Benz User Experience, don’t you? Let me jog your memory, “Hey Mercedes.” This is the fantastic technology I am talking about! It is so advanced that thanks to artificial intelligence it learns about driving habits and preferences over time, ensuring that the A-Class Sedan adapts to you, in more ways than one. Crazy, right? Here’s a video to see what I mean.

ARE THE ENGINES THE SAME?

If you know the hatchback engines, you will recognise this first one on offer which is the A200 with its 1.33-litre turbocharged petrol engine up front giving you 120 kW and 250 Nm. You also have a choice of the A250 with its 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine which produces 165 kW and 350 Nm. Both engines are mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

SAFETY IS THE NAME OF THE GAME

This A-Sedan is so fancy that it offers the highest level of active safety in this segment. Some of the features come straight from the hella fancy S-Class. It can now drive semi-autonomously in certain situations. It also happens to be the first Mercedes-Benz model to have been developed at the new Technology Centre for Vehicle Safety.

The new A-Class Sedan is equipped with driver and front passenger airbags, a driver’s knee airbag and window airbags as standard. Unlike in many competing models, the window airbag also covers the A-pillar for more complete passenger protection. Thorax-pelvis side airbags are likewise standard in the front, and available as optional equipment for the rear.

WHAT’S THE VERDICT?

Look, if you are in the market for an A-Class, whether it be the hatch or the Sedan, you really are going to be happy with either. The only reason I am highlighting what the Sedan offers over the hatch is because it is the newcomer and I was always taught to be nice to the new kid because they won’t know anyone. Take the new kid on the block for a spin. You might just find your new bestie.

PRICING STARTS AT R533 400

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