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Mercedes-Benz A200 2005 Review

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Buy with confidence; all Mercedes-Benz Certified Pre-Owned vehicles come with a factory backed warranty, 100 point safety check, comprehensive service history and 24hr roadside assistance.

And in a move sure to make the baby Benz even more attractive, the starting price is around $30,000 for the entry-level A150.

When the A-Class was launched eight years ago as a city getabout, it never quite lived up to its pre-release hype. Even a midlife suspension upgrade along with electronic stability control did little to drive sales.

At the height of the first generation's popularity with Australian buyers, it was selling about 1000 units annually.

Now the second generation promises to deliver the German car maker a bigger slice of the singles and small family car market.

The A-Class is now available in two bigger body styles (three or five doors), three engine options (A150, A170 or A200) and three trim levels (Classic, Avantgarde and Elegance), and, later this year, Mercedes-Benz will unveil a new turbocharged version of the two-litre motor. Safety plays a big part in the Benz master plan for the A-Class and the car maker has been rewarded with a European NCAP five-star crash-test rating.

With the engine and transmission tucked away under the floor, the mechanicals slide down and away from the interior in the event of a front-on crash.

The vehicle's "sandwich" construction delivers the A-Class a bigger front-end crash crumple zone when compared with other vehicles in its class – and because the driver and passenger seating positions are elevated, there's more protection in the event of a side impact, according to the car maker.

The safety package goes further, with seat-belt tensioners and adaptive belt force limiters, two-stage adaptive front airbags and side and window airbags to provide added protection for heads and upper bodies.

The electronic and mechanical safety package includes ABS brakes with brake assist and stability control.

The A-Class is a bigger car now – longer by 323mm and 45mm wider. This translates into more interior room and there is ample space to accommodate four or five people. Mercedes-Benz says the boot capacity is up by 15 per cent to 435 litres. With the seats in place, cargo room is adequate, but lay the rear seats flat, or remove them along with the front passenger seat, and the interior takes on a new dimension.

Mercedes-Benz says the rear luggage area then expands to accommodate cargo measuring up to 2.75m (it will easily fit a bicycle) and can carry up to 1995 litres.

On test was the A200 Elegance fitted with a range of high-end options, including the new continuously variable automatic transmission (Autotronic), satellite navigation and sun roof. Mercedes-Benz says the upgraded four-cylinder engine generates up to 13 per cent more power than the previous motor. The baby Benz scoots up to 100km from zero in a tick under 10 seconds and has a claimed top speed of about 200km/h.

The new auto transmission is a first for Mercedes-Benz and delivers seamless acceleration. Unlike a traditional automatic, there is no discernible up or down shifting, but if there is a need to dictate terms, a manual mode is available.

From the elevated driving position, there's good all-round vision and all controls, including the optional Thermotronic climate control system, are within easy reach.

It was difficult to judge the effectiveness of the automatic windscreen wipers because it was rain-free during the test, but the come-on-as-needed headlights are worthwhile, particularly when driving into a dimly lit parking station. While you'd expect to easily slot a car of the A-Class's size into a parking space, the sharp wedge-shaped front makes it difficult to judge the whereabouts of the front bumper. Optional park assist on the test car overcomes the possibility of scratching the paintwork.

Mercedes-Benz says its new engines are more fuel-efficient, using up to 10 per cent less fuel than the previous range.

With a fuel-tank capacity of 54 litres, Mercedes-Benz says the A200 has a combined city/country consumption rate of 7.2 litres/100km, giving it a cruising range of more than 700km between fillups.


Mercedes-Benz A200 Elegance

Price: From $42,900
Engine: Two-litre, four cylinders
Power: 100kW at 5750rpm
Torque: 185Nm between 3500rpm and 4000rpm
Transmission: Continuously variable automatic. Front-wheel drive
Wheels: 16in alloys
Suspension: Front: Coil springs, twin-tube gas-pressure shock absorbers, anti-roll bar. Rear: Parabolic axle
Brakes: Discs front and rear, ABS and brake assistance
Weight: 1270kg
Fuel consumption: 7.2 litres/100km.

Pricing guides

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Range and Specs

A170 Avantgarde 1.7L, PULP, CVT AUTO $3,800 – 6,160 2005 Mercedes-Benz A-Class 2005 A170 Avantgarde Pricing and Specs
A150 Classic 1.5L, PULP, CVT AUTO $2,900 – 4,950 2005 Mercedes-Benz A-Class 2005 A150 Classic Pricing and Specs
A170 Elegance 1.7L, PULP, 5 SP MAN $3,800 – 6,160 2005 Mercedes-Benz A-Class 2005 A170 Elegance Pricing and Specs
A160 LWB Classic 1.6L, ULP, 5 SP SEQ $3,500 – 5,720 2005 Mercedes-Benz A-Class 2005 A160 LWB Classic Pricing and Specs
Disclaimer: The pricing information shown in the editorial content (Review Prices) is to be used as a guide only and is based on information provided to Carsguide Autotrader Media Solutions Pty Ltd (Carsguide) both by third party sources and the car manufacturer at the time of publication. The Review Prices were correct at the time of publication.  Carsguide does not warrant or represent that the information is accurate, reliable, complete, current or suitable for any particular purpose. You should not use or rely upon this information without conducting an independent assessment and valuation of the vehicle.