2016 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class Review
Pros & Cons
- Sporty handling and performance from base model
- stunning performance from AMG version
- ample safety features.
- Overly firm ride quality
- abundance of road and wind noise
- slow responses from the automatic transmission
- less cargo capacity than most rivals.
List Price Range
$21,500 - $30,634
Used GLA-Class for SaleSee all for sale
Edmunds' Expert Review
Most helpful consumer reviews
GLA 250 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 7AM)
Let's get to the fun stuff first -- this car accelerates and corners like a Mercedes should, quick off the start or merging on a highway, handling winding roads, and comfortably using the cruise control to increase speed 5 mph at a time. When you step on the gas, it feels like the engine is gently pullling you along. Even with cruise set at 75 through the mountains of WV, there's no lurching between gears. Panoramic sun roof and shade screen is nice. The GLA is definitely more hatchback than SUV, though, when it comes to size and fit. Cargo area is small, back seats are smaller, and even front head & leg room is slight. Reliabilty has been an issue: an electronic part failed, causing a complete electrical failure that would have cost $2400 to replace if the car wasn't under warranty. Tires replaced after 25,000 miles, mostly highway, dealership said I was lucky to get 20k from them because they're soft rubber for performance. On third set of tires after 46,000 miles. So plan on $800 every 20k for new tires. Entertainment system is unnecessarily complicated, and the iPad looking thing on the dash (that looks like a last minute addition) is NOT a touch screen, so it's all buttons and knobs. Electronic safety systems have quit on me 5-7 times in the last 15 months, but they work fine when the car is re-started later. Overall, I'd expect better reliability for this level of engineering. Would not buy in the future.
GLA 250 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 7AM)
I love this car! It's an absolute blast to drive whether on the highway or on the curvy back roads and it looks great! You push this car to pass someone one the back roads and it just hunkers right down like it's driving on rails. The way it handles, drives, and looks is all Mercedes. Inside and out everything is polished. One odd thing is the multimedia display is not a touch screen. AppleCar play works great although I do prefer the Mercedes navigation over Apple's. One thing the detailed reviews don't tend to go over are the different driving modes you can put the car in. The different modes change how the steering feels, how sensitive the throttle is, where the shift points are, along with some specific behavior for the mode. There modes include Comfort (the default), Sport, Offroad, Eco, and an Individual mode where you can changes some of the settings. Eco will give you the greatest gas mileage: softer steering, slow throttle response (unless to punch it), shifts early, shuts the engine off at stops, and tends to "coast" the engine. Sport stiffens the steering, very sensitive throttle response, and shifts late (fun!). It also will use more active all-wheel drive (4MATIC models) going around corners. Comfort is in-between Eco and Sport. Offroad softens the steering, slower throttle response, shifts later, and cuts back on the anti-lock brakes for better stopping distance from "plowing" the gravel on braking. Individual mode lets you change some of these settings. All modes except Offroad turns off the engine at stops by default (this can be overridden). Honestly, other than suspension behaviour, it feels like you're getting 3-4 different cars in one. You can go totally green commuting and highway driving and get great gas mileage; get something in-between if you want more response and trade-off gas mileage, or go totally fun mode on the back roads. If you drive on a fair amount of dirt roads (like I do), you get the bonus of offroad mode as well. This didn't make or break the deal for me--it was an unexpected bonus! I ended up w/ the Kryptonite Green which looks much better in person than on the computer screen--great color! I used Edmunds to get $4200 below MSRP.
GLA 250 4dr SUV (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 7AM)
This vehicle is a truly beautiful machine with robust power and a comfortable & luxurious ride. It's relatively compact, though seats 4 adults comfortably; the benefit to the smaller SUV size is great gas mileage. It's very well built (sturdy) and gives a sense of security and confidence in driving. With all the bells and whistles, it's a modern tech dream -- radar cruise control, blind spot monitoring, rear camera, big nav display, and simple bluetooth pairing for phone music/calls. The pano sunroof makes the cabin seem very spacious, and the sport package styling is sharp and aggressive. Ride is smooth & quiet, and we do not notice any erratic transmission shifting as others have commented -- maybe they re-programmed the transmission for this newer factory model? The dealer experience (Fletcher-Jones in Henderson, NV) was exceptional compared to any other. They didn't pressure us to buy inventory and cheerfully helped with a factory order. It took about 3 months to arrive. We ordered in South Sea Blue, Brown Leather, Satin Poplar Wood, Sport Package, Panorama Roof, Bi-Xenon & LED Lights, Interior Package, Premium Package, Multimedia Package, Power Passenger Seat, and Driver Assistant Package. Highly recommend this car in a "loaded config" -- it's the nicest car we've every owned or driven!
AMG GLA 45 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 7AM)
I have taken the GLA45 on road trips and the track. It is the best vehicle I have ever driven which includes some BMW M models. It has carried kayaks and paddle boards, been down some graded dirt roads and done a track day. It did everything superbly. I only used the Sport+ setting on the track, not even race. The dual clutch shifts seamlessly and almost no roll. I have the adaptive suspension, too. It is very quick but does have a pedal delay which is some really odd programming. The turbo will come on strong but smoothly. I like having a unique car. The only negatives for me are in the technology. The computer is complex and takes a lot of time to program and look for stuff. The car is new so I cannot comment on reliability but hopefully it will be average. I strongly recommend this car as a performance vehicle that can multitask, too. It is a lot of car for the money. If you want one you will want to limit options and I would offer ten percent less than the sticker. Mercedes overloads the options like a luxury cruiser which can add $25k and makes it a super expensive hot hatch. They also tend not to carry many colors outside of the gray scale. So, it you want red or blue and under $60k you will have to look far and wide. Most will be $65k and up and in black, gray, silver or white. However, if you love driving and need a crossover-hatch-SUV this is the best!