Artist's rendering of the upcoming Mercedes-Benz GLA ClassEnlarge Photo
What’s in a name, Shakespeare once pondered, as a rose by any other name would smell as sweet. In the case of a new compact crossover from Mercedes-Benz, there’s a lot riding on the name, which could have an impact on both global sales and future product lines.
This much is given: Mercedes-Benz is working on a compact crossover, based on the MFA A/B segment platform
. It will be front-wheel-drive in layout (although AWD is a likely option), and will be sized on par with Range Rover’s Evoque, according to Britain’s Car Magazine
The vehicle started off development as the BLK
, before being given the name GLC. Possibly to avoid confusion with the former Mazda compact of the same name (which their marketing efforts would tell you stood for “Great Little Car”), Mercedes has now re-named its upcoming compact crossover to the GLA Class.
To compete against the Range Rover Evoque, expect the GLA to be a bit more sporting in appearance than the average crossover, although engines are likely to be pulled from current A and B class offerings. In other words, expect the GLA to look fast, not go fast (unless, of course, an AMG version is eventually offered).
The GLA will share the MFA platform with Mercedes’ upcoming CLA four-door coupe
. Expect the CLA to hit the market first, as early as next spring, followed by the GLA by year end.