Fuel Economy Update for November - 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA250 Long-Term Road Test

2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA250 Long-Term Road Test

2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA250: Fuel Economy Update for November

December 05, 2013

2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA250

It's way too early to draw any conclusions just yet. Our 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA250 has just barely passed the 750-mile mark on the way to being broken in.

That said, we're driving our CLA gently in these introductory miles. I would have expected its MPG to be reasonable, at least. But so far this car's impressive-on-paper EPA ratings seem like wishful thinking in the extreme.

The CLA250 is powered by a 2-liter turbo engine. It feeds its power through a seven-speed automated-manual transmission. A stop-start system kills the engine at traffic signals and the like to reduce idle fuel consumption. This trifecta of the latest efficiency trends results in an official EPA rating of 30 mpg Combined (26 mpg City/38 mpg Highway).

That's great, but our average (so far) is just 23.3 mpg. I was the one driving the most recent tank and managed just 26.9 mpg, barely eclipsing the city rating despite a mix that was about equal parts city and freeway driving. What's more, I left the start-stop system on to do its thing and I was fairly conservative with the throttle when under way.

I'm not impressed, even with the break-in and the newness and all. But the real story will begin to emerge in the next month or two.

Let's hope my simmering theory about the new crop of small-displacement "Eco-turbos," the one that suspects they're prone to missing their EPA ratings by a much greater percentage in the real world than the larger non-turbo engines they're meant to replace, is proven wrong.

Worst Fill: 19.6 mpg
Best Fill: 26.9 mpg
Lifetime Average: 23.3 mpg
EPA Combined Rating: 30 mpg (26 City/38 Highway)
Best Range: 218 miles
Current Odometer: 762 miles

Dan Edmunds, Director of Vehicle Testing @ 762 miles


  • noburgers noburgers Posts:

    let's hope engine break-in improves mileage. or it could be the wonky CEL and some engine management software reducing the mileage. We'll see.

  • mercedesfan mercedesfan Posts:

    I think the EPA's ratings are overly optimistic here. 38mpg just seems ridiculous to me. I think most people will be in the 30-33mpg range on the highway. I just have a hard time believing that a bigger (although slightly lighter) and more powerful car is going to get that much better gas mileage than a C250. Having said that, Mercedes are notoriously slow to break-in with regards to fuel economy. Both my old S550 and my wife's E350 reached 30,000 miles before they started to really achieve consistent fuel economy.

  • greenpony greenpony Posts:

    It would seem that your theory about small-displacement turbocharged engines has already been proven true. The Regal is the only one that met its EPA ratings, IIRC.

  • iode iode Posts:

    I've been driving my CLA250 ~50 miles to work and back every weekday, about 20% local, 80% highway, 10% traffic jams. My "from start" MPG calculator usually gives me around 33-35 MPG. Not too shabby.

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