2018 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 SUV

#8
in Midsize SUVs
2018 MODEL

$50,600

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Overview

The Mercedes Benz AMG GLA 45 is a classic example of a crossover but it isn’t just a crossover. What do you call an offspring of a hot hatch and an SUV? A hot crossover? And with the kind of performance that the AMG GLA 45 offers, you can rightfully call it a hot crossover.
The Mercedes Benz GLA is born out of the smaller A-Class hatch and the larger GLC Class SUV. The AMG is the performance division of Mercedes Benz. Hence, the AMG variant of the GLA is branded as the AMG GLA 45 and it gets a handcrafted engine from AMG. The engine produces a whopping 375 HP and delivers a 350 lb-ft of torque making the GLA a hot crossover. And at $50,600, this crossover is the most affordable car amongst its arch rivals.
The AMG GLA 45 is Mercedes Benz’s attempt to diversify its AMG line-up. With the GLA 45, the AMG badge remains no longer restricted just to some ultra-expensive sports and luxury cars. The AMG GLA 45 offers the practicality of a hatchback and the go-anywhere nature of an SUV and at the same time with that AMG logo, you get some mad power and superb driving experience. All in all, the Mercedes Benz AMG GLA 45 is a mouth-watering proposition.
 

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Pros

Ride tuned for sport over comfort

Infotainment system has an easy learning curve

Cons

Rear seats are cramped

Transmission on the base variant could have been better

What's New?

Standard rearview camera

8-inch infotainment system

Revised exterior design


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$50600

bodystyle

4dr SUV

passenger capacity

5

drivetrain

AWD

engine type

displacement

121 cu. in.

horsepower

375 hp @ 6000 rpm

torque

350 lb.-ft. @ 2250 rpm

transmission

7-speed automatic

chassis

brake rotors (f/r)

13 in. ventilated disc brakes/13.8 in. ventilated disc brakes

dimensions

wheelbase

106.3 in.

length

175 in.

width

71 in.

height

58.2 in.

curb weight

3457 lbs.

ground clearance

6.4 in.

capacity

cargo volume

14.9 cu ft.

performance

zero to 60 mph

4.3 sec.

standing ¼-mile

12.8 sec.

braking (70-0 mph)

153 ft.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

16/25/28 mpg

highway range

414.4 mi.

warranty

roadside assistance

No



Styles

 2018 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 SUV in Lunar Blue Metallic color  2018 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 SUV in designo Mountain Gray Magno color  2018 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 SUV in Jupiter Red color  2018 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 SUV in Cocoa Brown Metallic color  2018 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 SUV in Cirrus White color
Lunar Blue Metallic

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Exterior

8.5

Engine

8.3

Interior

8.5

8.4

OVERALL RATING

Variant Name

MSRP


 2018 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 SUV AMG GLA 45

AMG GLA 45

Fuel: Premium unleaded (required), Transmission: Manual, Seats: 5

$50,600

Configurations
AMG GLA 45 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 7AM)
Transmission: 7AM MPG: (22/25/28)

Expert Review


carhp editor October 25, 2018

8.4

Overall Rating


 

8.3/10
Engine

 
 

8.5/10
Interior

 

8.5/10
Exterior

 
 
 
 

The Mercedes Benz GLA is born out of the smaller A-Class hatch and the larger GLC Class SUV. The AMG variant of the GLA is branded as the gets a handcrafted engine from the super hot rodding division. The specially crafted engine produces a whopping 375 HP and delivers a 350 lb-ft of torque making the GLA a hot crossover. And at $50,600, this crossover is the most affordable car amongst its arch rivals.

Features

The AMG GLA 45 is offered in only one trim level and you don't get any optional trim levels. You get 19-inch alloy wheels, a powered liftgate, three performance driving modes, leather upholstery and a list of features all as standard.

Trims AMG GLA 45
MSRP $50,600
Features

19-inch alloy wheels

  Power liftgate
  Power-adjustable driver seat
  Three performance driving modes
  Imitation leather upholstery
  60/40-split folding rear seatback with a center pass-through
  8-inch central display with a dial-and-button control array
  Mercedes's Mbrace telematics system (including a Wi-Fi hotspot and concierge services) are available on a subscription basis.

Engine

8.3/10

"The GLA doesn't handle like an SUV. It feels more like a nimble hatchback. There's less tugging on the steering wheel in the all-wheel-drive GLA 45. Well-managed body lean, plenty of tire grip and a well-tuned stability control system"- Edmunds

Engine and Transmission 

The Mercedes Benz AMG GLA 45 gets a handcrafted AMG embossed engine. This specially crafted engine churns out a massive 375 HP and delivers 350 lb-ft of torque. The turbocharged, 2 liters Inline 4 cylinder engine is mated to a 7-speed automatic transmission. The power from the AMG powerplant is sent to 4 wheels and the power distribution is smartly managed by the Mercedes 4MATIC all-wheel drive system.

Models Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 Porsche Macan Turbo Audi SQ5 Premium Plus BMW X4 M40i
MSRP $50,600 $77,200 $54,300 $60,450
Engine 2.0L I-4 Turbo w/Direct Injection 3.6L Twin Turbo V6 3.0L TFSI Twin-Scroll DOHC V6 3.0L M Perf TwinPower Turbo 6-Cylinder
Transmission 7-Speed Automatic 7-Speed Automatic 8-Speed Automatic 8-Speed Automatic
Power 375 hp 400 hp 354 hp 355 hp
Torque 350 lb-ft 406 lb-ft 369 lb-ft 343 lb-ft

The only car that makes power than the AMG GLA 45 in this segment is the Porsche Macan Turbo at 400 HP but it costs a $17000 more than the Mercedes. Both the Audi SQ5 and the BMW cost more and make less power than the Mercedes.

Acceleration

When your car has that AMG badge, you know your car is one of the best performers out there. Floor the AMG GLA 45 and it goes from a standstill to 60MPH in just 4.3 secs. This crossover covers the quarter-mile distance in just 12.7 secs. The smooth shifting gears make achieving these figures a cakewalk.

Models Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 Porsche Macan Turbo Audi SQ5 Premium Plus BMW X4 M40i
0-60 MPH 4.3 sec 4.6 sec 5.1 sec 4.6 sec
Quarter mile 12.7 sec 12.9 sec 13.1 sec 13.5 sec
Engine 2.0L 3.6L 3.0L 3.0L
Emission

 

(Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year)

7.1 9.3 8.4 8.4

The Mercedes has the smallest engine of the lot and yet it delivers the best acceleration numbers, credit to the low curb weight. The low curb weight also makes the AMG GLA 45 very efficient and thus it has the lowest CO2 emissions in the segment. The Porsche is the only car that hits the quarter mile mark under 13 secs while the Audi and the BMW both cross the 13 secs mark.

Ride and Handling

The Mercedes Benz AMG GLA 45 is a race spec car. The suspensions are on the firmer side and are tuned for the race track. As a result, this car gives you the confidence of throwing it into the corners like no other car of this size does. The steering is very responsive and you really feel connected to the car. In spite of being an SUV derivative, the AMG GLA 45 doesn't display the amount of body roll you would expect it to have.

Although the suspension settings make this car a great handler, it sacrifices the comfort levels. The ride quality is not something that you would associate with a Mercedes Benz. On bad roads, you are guaranteed to feel every bump and pothole you hit even in the comfort mode. The AMG GLA 45 is not a great SUV but with the kind of power and handling that it has on offer, it is has got the dominant hot hatch genes ultimately making it a hot crossover.

Braking

The AMG GLA 45 gets 13.8 inches diameter discs up front and 13.0 inches diameter discs at the rear. The brake calipers are painted in red and have an AMG logo on it just to remind you its an ordinary crossover but at a 375 HP crossover. Slam on the brakes and the AMG GLA 45 will come to a complete halt from 60 MPH at a distance of just 110 feet. The credit of this braking performance partly goes to the superior brakes and partly to the low curb weight of the car.

Model Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 Porsche Macan Turbo Audi SQ5 Premium Plus BMW X4 M40i
Brake(in) 13.8 14.2 13.8 12.9
Brake (in) 13.0 14.0 13.0 13.0
Curb weight(lbs) 3457 4244 4398 4323
60-0 MPH (ft.) 110 127 123 123

In spite of getting the better brakes, the Porsche Macan fails to beat the Mercedes in terms of braking performance. The Audi and the BMW too, fail to make a mark. The high curb weight of these cars is what contributes to the poor braking performances.

Fuel Economy

By no means, the AMG GLA 45 is a gas guzzler. Given the fact that this is a 375 HP crossover, it delivers some impressive fuel economy numbers. In the city, this hot crossover gets a fuel economy rating of 22 MPG and on the highway, it gets a rating of 28 MPG. The AMG GLA 45 ends up getting an excellent combined fuel efficiency rating of 25 MPG. 

Model Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 Porsche Macan Turbo Audi SQ5 Premium Plus BMW X4 M40i
MPG (city) 22 17 19 18
MPG (highway) 28 23 24 25
MPG (combined) 25 20 21 21

The Audi SQ5 and the BMW X4 both are underpowered than the AMG GLA 45 and yet they fail to match the economy figures and only get combined efficiency rating of 21 MPG. The Porsche on the other hand, being the more powerful and heavier car delivers a combined rating of 20 MPG.

Interior

8.5/10

"Though the 2017 GLA luxury-crossover SUV from Mercedes-Benz feels somewhat coupe-like from the front seats rear passengers are met with more generous headroom thanks to the GLA’s 3.5-inch-taller SUV profile"- KBB

On the inside, the cabin is trademark Mercedes Benz. The cabin is upmarket and the material quality and the fit and finish are really great. You get the dashboard wrapped in black leather with red stitching with some race spec graphics giving the cabin a sporty feel.

There are traces of chrome on the air con vent and additionally, they get a sporty red color insert. The buttons and the switches are all smartly placed giving the dashboard an uncluttered look. The AMG GLA 45 gets interior ambient mood lighting too.

Seating and Comfort.

The AMG GLA 45 can accommodate 5 people. This is a driver's car and most of its owners will skip critiquing to get behind the wheel and go on with the driving. The AMG GLA 45 comes with sporty bucket seats at the front and a regular bench at the rear. The Mercedes Benz has managed the space on the inside well in spite of being a small car and there ample amount of leg, head and shoulder room on offer. As a result, the boot space is sacrificed.

Model Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 Porsche Macan Turbo Audi SQ5 Premium Plus BMW X4 M40i
Passenger capacity 5 5 5 5
Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg)

(In.)

40.0/54.8/41.9 39.4/-/33.1 40.2/57.7/41.0 40.0/57.2/40.4
Second (Head/Shoulder/Leg)

(In.)

38.2/53.1/27.3 36.3/-/32.3 37.7/56.5/37.8 37.4/56.0/34.8

Infotainment System

The Mercedes Benz calls its infotainment system as the COMAND infotainment system. The system includes an 8-inch touchscreen interface with premium Harman/Kardon audio system that delivers some great sound quality. Along with touch, the screen can also be controlled with a rotary knob provided in the center console.

The AMG GLA 45 also gets Android Auto, Apple Carplay and Bluetooth streaming. The system is very intuitive and is pretty simple to use. Only the touchscreen quality lets you down. It is not very responsive, the display is pixelated and the graphics also lag a bit.

Interior Features

  • Leather upholstery
  • CD player and HD radio
  • SD card reader and USB ports
  • Heated seats
  • Power adjustable driver seats
  • 60/40 split folding rear seats
  • 3 performance driving modes

Cargo space

The Mercedes Benz AMG GLA 45 is a rather small car. It offers great space for the passengers on the inside and thus the cargo space has been compromised. Behind the second row, it gets only 17.2 cubic feet of luggage space. Fold down the 2nd row of seats and you open up to 43.6 cubic feet of luggage space.

Model Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 Porsche Macan Turbo Audi SQ5 Premium Plus BMW X4 M40i
Behind 2nd Row(ft.cube) 17.2 17.7 26.8 18.5
With All Seats folded (ft.cube) 43.6 53.0 60.4 50.5

The AMG GLA 45 has the smallest luggage storage space in the segment. At 26.8 cubic feet of storage space, the Audi SQ5 is the leader in the segment followed by the BMW X4 and the Porsche Macan. Low cargo space is probably the only area where the AMG GLA 45 fails to impress the buyer

Exterior

8.5/10

"Names like Kryptonite Green Metallic, Jupiter Red and designo Magno Mountain Grey should give you a clue. AMG versions receive the obligatory aggressive body treatment, while an optional Aerodynamics Package goes to 11 with a larger front splitter and a bi g roof spoiler"- KBB

Dimensions and Weight

The AMG GLA 45 is not the biggest car in the segment. It is 175.4 inches long, 71 inches wide and 58 inches tall. It is the lightest car in the competition and only weighs 3457 lbs. The AMG GLA 45 also gets a modest ground clearance of 7.2 inches.

Model Mercedes-Benz AMG GLA 45 Porsche Macan Turbo Audi SQ5 Premium Plus BMW X4 M40i
curb weight(lbs) 3457 4244 4398 4323
Length(in) 175.4 185.0 183.9 184.3
Width(in) 71.0 76.1 74.5 74.1
Height(in) 58.0 63.4 65.3 63.9
Ground clearance(in) 7.2 7.8 8.2 8.0
Wheelbase(in) 106.3 110.5 111.2 110.6
Track width(in) F/R 61.7/61.8 65.2/65.0 63.9/63.6 62.8/63.4

The AMG GLA 45, in fact, is the smallest car amongst its rivals. The Porsche Macan is the largest car in the segment followed by the Audi SQ5 and the BMW X4 M40i. The Audi happens to be the heaviest car in this four-way. 

Exterior Features

  • 19-inch alloy wheels
  • Powered liftgate
  • Backup camera

Safety

Mercedes has shown zero tolerance when it comes to safety and there is no compromise on this front. The AMG GLA 45 comes with some advanced safety tech and gizmos just to ensure that you remain safe and protected.

Safety Features

  • Electronic Stability Control (ESC)
  • ABS And Driveline Traction Control
  • Side Impact Beams
  • Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Seat-Mounted Side Airbags
  • Front And Rear Parking Sensors
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Tire Specific Low Tire Pressure Warning
  • Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Front Airbags
  • Curtain 1st And 2nd Row Airbags
  • Airbag Occupancy Sensor
  • Driver And Passenger Knee Airbag and Rear Side-Impact Airbag
  • Rear Child Safety Locks
  • Outboard Front Lap And Shoulder Safety Belts -inc: Rear Center 3 Point, Height Adjusters and Pretensioners

The IIHS and the NHTSA have not rated this vehicle yet.

Competition

Porsche Macan Turbo vs Mercedes Benz AMG GLA 45

The Porsche Macan uses a bigger engine and makes more power than the Mercedes. It also offers some extra passenger room and cargo volume, while with the Porsche, you also get more ground clearance.

But the Porsche is a gas guzzler and has poor fuel economy ratings. Although it makes more power, the Porsche's acceleration timing is no threat to the Mercedes. On the braking front too, the Mercedes performs better. Plus the Porsche is a $17,000 premium over the Mercedes. All these factors make the AMG GLA 45 a clear winner and a more sensible buy.

Audi SQ5 Premium Plus vs Mercedes Benz AMG GLA 45

The Audi SQ5 uses a larger engine than the Mercedes yet it makes less power. The SQ5 also deliver low fuel economy numbers. It also has the lower acceleration timings and performs poorly in the braking tests. The Audi also costs almost $4,000 more than the Mercedes Benz. The Audi only beats the Mercedes when it comes to cargo storage. As compared to the Audi, the Mercedes Benz AMG GLA 45 is clearly the better car and it is the one that you should go for.

BMW X4 M40i vs Mercedes Benz AMG GLA 45

The X4 is another SUV from BMW and its no match to the AMG GLA 45. The X4 is 20 horses deficient to the Mercedes, it has poor acceleration timings and also fares poorly in the braking game. The BMW also a disappointing fuel economy ratings when compared to the Mercedes. The BMW only has better ground clearance and gets a larger boot. Also, it costs $10000 more than the AMG GLA 45.

The only reason you should be buying the BMW is that it has the bigger luggage storage space. Otherwise, the Mercedes Benz AMG GLA 45 is the better buy.

Final Verdict

The German engineers have done all the things right while crafting this hot crossover. The AMG GLA 45 is powerful, fast and is a fun to drive car. Step on the gas and you are launched like a rocket. This is a very agile car and sticks to the road firmly. It readily dives into corners and handles really well. The car always wants you to push it harder and exploit its abilities to the fullest.

The AMG GLA 45 is a good looking beast. Put it into the sport mode and floor the accelerator and the engine roars and the car launches itself like a rocket. It is one of the most fun to drive cars available in the market. As said earlier, this car offers the practicality of a hatch, capabilities of an SUV and an engine of a sports car. This car is the jack of all trades and is the master when it comes to crossovers. At fifty grand, the Mercedes Benz AMG GLA 45 is the best car you can certainly buy.

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