Mercedes-Benz A-Class A200 BlueEFFICIENCY Style Review
Third time's the charm

Story and Photos by Benjamin G. Kline
10 Jul 2013



First conceived nearly 13 years ago, the A-class was an attempt by Mercedes-Benz to plug a compact car segment which they left out previously. What they ended up with was a car that seemed out of place among their traditionally rear wheel drive sedans.

Unlike the other cars under the pointed star, the A-class had a short compact chassis coupled to a rather tall body. This invariably led to a stability problem which was uncovered by the Swedes in an automobile test. The ‘elk test’ was derived to test a vehicle’s ability to remain stable when the driver swerves to avoid an obstacle usually at speeds between 50 – 80kmh.  

Unfortunately, the first A-class didn’t fare well for the test but once the problem was discovered though, Mercedes-Benz got its industrial might behind it and the baby Merc was fixed promptly.

Despite the problem with the first generation, the A-class maintained its popularity as an easy entry into the premium marque. Globally, Mercedes-Benz sold more than a million units making it one of the most successful models ever produced by the company.  

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