Since the model’s market launch in Europe in April 2013, Mercedes-Benz has handed over more than 100,000 CLA to customers all over the world. Altogether, sales of the new generation of compact cars with the three-pointed star have reached more than 800,000 units. Since the beginning of this year alone these have included more than 250,000 A-, B-, GLA- and CLA-Class vehicles.
“100,000 CLA and altogether 800,000 new compact models show very clearly that our model initiative in the compact segment is definitely hitting the mark”, said Ola Källenius, Member of the Divisional Board Mercedes-Benz Cars responsible for Marketing & Sales told Berlin Observer. “Month after month, these models are the most important drivers of our growth worldwide.”
As part of its growth strategy “Mercedes-Benz 2020”, the Stuttgart-based premium manufacturer is currently undertaking the most extensive model initiative in the history of the company, aimed both at retaining the loyalty of existing customers and, at the same time, at making the brand even more appealing to new target groups. The new compact car models proof: the strategy is bearing fruit. Particularly with the CLA and the A-Class vehicles, Mercedes-Benz is winning new and significantly younger customers, all over the world.
The CLA can demonstrate major successes in its most important single market, the USA. One in four vehicles in this model range is driven by a customer in America. Since the model’s introduction almost a year ago, some 27,000 CLA have been sold in the USA. It is the first time, a model is available for under 30,000 US-Dollar there. The CLA is Mercedes-Benz’s first compact-segment car to be on sale in the US. Thus the compact coupe is the brand’s new entry-level model. In the USA, the average age of CLA drivers is 45 and thus some ten years younger than American Mercedes-Benz customers across the full range. The conquest rate for the model is also particularly high here: 8 out of 10 customers previously drove a competitor model.
Since September of last year, the CLA has also been available as an AMG model. The introduction of the CLA 45 AMG was instrumental in helping the Mercedes-Benz performance brand to achieve sustainable sales growth in the key US market, with growth at around 20 percent over the previous year.
The CLA was joined in mid-July by the B-Class Electric Drive as the second compact model to become available in the US. The electric-powered premium vehicle will make its debut in Europe at the end of 2014. The compact car family in the US will be further enhanced from September on with the addition of the GLA.
Outside the US, the most significant sales region for the CLA is Western Europe, with a share of around 30 percent. The compact coupe has been available here since mid-2013. Here too, the car has been delighting customers, of whom some 50 percent previously drove another brand of vehicle. The biggest markets in Europe are Germany and Great Britain.
With a Cd value of just 0.22, the four-door coupe has what is one of the best drag coefficients of any series-production car, making it the most aerodynamic vehicle in its segment. Most customers choose to emphasise the sporty credentials of the CLA still further: the most popular engine version is the CLA 250, often in conjunction with the Night Package as an optional extra. Paintwork in calcite white is a particularly frequent choice. Complementing this, the most popular upholstery combination is that of fabric and man-made leather in black/anthracite, while bi-xenon headlamps and the special safety feature Pre-Safe Brake are ordered with similar frequency.
The CLA has been built since January 2013 at the Mercedes-Benz plant in Kecskemét, Hungary. Opened in 2012, the plant also produces the B-Class as part of a co-ordinated production system with the German Rastatt plant. The third product that will shortly be leaving the production line of the Hungarian site will be the new CLA Shooting Brake, which is due to become the fifth member of the compact car family line-up from the second half of 2015.