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Classy and sophisticated, you will find no shortage of luxury in the 2019 Mercedes Benz GLA Class. The GLA Class seems to always be a hit with consumers since it is a "budget" (if you can call it that) Mercedes Benz. Sure, some aspects of the ride quality suffer, but, under the right conditions, it can actually be engaging to drive.
With only three trim levels (and one of them being an all-wheel drive off-shoot of the other) to choose from, picking the right one to fit your needs will most likely be pretty stress-free. However, you should still be aware of what comes equipped on each trim level since they all have some noteworthy differences. Regardless of whether you go for the base GLA 250, the GLA 250 4MATIC, or the AMG GLA 45, you will get something with a lot of standard features and a powertrain that provides a respectable fuel economy, which is not exactly common for luxury vehicles.
So, which 2019 Mercedes Benz GLA trim level is the right one for you? Which one presents you with the best overall deal? Read on through to the end of this comparison review and, by then, you should have a fairly clear idea of which trim is the one to buy.
Compare the 2019 Mercedes Benz GLA Class 250 vs GLA 250 4MATIC - What is the difference?
The 2019 Mercedes Benz GLA Class's base trim is known as the GLA 250. Despite being a base trim, it is more than reasonably equipped. Also, it's considerably affordable for a luxury crossover with a starting MSRP of just $33,950. The GLA 250 is powered by a 2.0-L inline-4 engine that is capable of generating a respectable 208 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque. Although it does not give the GLA 250 a super speedy acceleration speed, the vehicle is able to get from 0 to 60 mph in roughly 7.2 seconds. This trim level has an EPA estimate of 27 combined mpg (24 mpg city and 33 mpg highway), which is nothing to scoff at considering which segment the GLA Class is placed in. In addition to the engine, the GLA 250 comes with a 7-speed dual clutch transmission and standard front-wheel drive. The suspension is 4-wheel independent with the ability to raise the vehicle's height. 18-inch 5-spoke wheels come equipped.
The GLA 250 can be painted in your choice of nine beautiful body colors. You can opt to get Night Black, Polar White, Jupiter Red, Cosmos Black metallic, Iridium Silver metallic, Mountain Grey metallic, Lunar Blue metallic, Cocoa Brown metallic, or designo Mountain Grey in a stunning matte finish. The exterior also has matte black cladding around the side sills and wheel arches. Also, there are accents in silver chrome placed thoughtfully along the front fascia as well as on the roof rails. Of course, the ever-iconic Mercedes Benz grille is set in chrome. Deeply-tinted privacy glass is added on to the liftgate and rear windows for an extra touch of class. If you want, you can opt for gloss black accents on the exterior of the vehicle, and there are 19-inch wheels (a twin 5-spoke in matte black or AMG multi-spokes in either black or silver) available if the 18-inch standard wheels do not meet your needs. A panoramic sunroof can also be added at your will.
On the inside, the GLA 250 is equally chic. It is also comfortable. The cabin looks quite contemporary yet still refined with its sail pattern trim and 4.5-inch instrument cluster display that is lit up in full color. You can opt for top-stitched MB-Tex leather trim for the dash and upper door areas, and it complements the standard leather upholstery well. You can also choose to add aluminum trim, Matte Black Ash wood trim, or Satin Light Brown Poplar wood trim to really bring out the GLA 250's luxurious appeal. There is also an option for equipping black headliner.
Additional standard luxury features include 14-way power-adjustable front seats with 4-way power lumbar support, ambient lighting throughout the cabin, dual-zone automatic climate control, remote start, and a brake HOLD feature that lets you take your foot off the brake while stopped in traffic without the vehicle lurching forward. Optional luxury features, such as the HomeLink garage door opener and heated front seats, add even more convenience and comfort to the GLA 250.
Of course, multimedia features cannot be ignored. The GLA 250 comes with an 8-inch touchscreen infotainment display, Bluetooth connectivity, two USB ports, HD radio, a built-in SD card reader, and a CD/MP3 player. Also, you can choose to add WiFi connectivity, smartphone app integration via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a Harman Kardon LOGIC7 sound system, advanced voice control functions, and the COMAND navigation system.
Safety is just as important as luxury, and Mercedes Benz recognizes this. The GLA 250 is given standard safety features like an emergency call function, fog lamps, a rearview camera, the Attention Assist system, an electronic parking brake, electronic stability and traction control, smart key, and an anti-theft alarm system that includes a panic button. If you wish to do so, you can choose to add blind spot monitoring, lane keep assist, active parking assist, a 360-degree surround-view camera, and LED headlights, taillights, and daytime running lights.
As you can probably imagine, the GLA 250 4MATIC comes with a lot of the same features as the front-wheel drive variant. The biggest difference is, of course, that the 4MATIC has standard all-wheel drive. Its starting MSRP is only a few thousand more than the GLA 250, and you are essentially paying for the 4MATIC system. This vehicle does get a slightly faster acceleration rate, but it is hard to notice much of a difference. And, as is probably pretty obvious, the fuel economy is lower on the 4MATIC. It can be equipped with an Off-Road package, which does amp up the 4MATIC's appeal for those who love a good off-roading adventure.
On the outside, the GLA 250 and 250 4MATIC are virtually indistinguishable. The same can be said of the trim levels' interior designs as well. If you want more features, you are simply going to have to upgrade to the line-topping AMG GLA 45 trim.
Compare the 2019 GLA Class 250 4MATIC vs AMG GLA 45 Trims. What is the difference?
Speaking of the GLA Class's super-chic line-topper, the AMG GLA 45 is, without a doubt, a more exciting drive than both of the 250 trim levels. The trade-off? You're going to be paying a lot more for this beautiful beast. $53,350 is the AMG GLA 45's starting MSRP, which is a pretty significant jump from the $30k range of the lower trim levels. However, if you are buying a luxury vehicle, money is probably less of an object for you. But don't worry, it won't be wasted on the AMG GLA 45.
This trim level comes with an impressive hand-crafted AMG 2.0-L inline-4 turbo-charged engine that is capable of producing a hefty 375 hp and 350 lb-ft of torque. It is paired up with a SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7-speed dual clutch transmission and can zip from 0 to 60 mph in just 4.3 seconds. The AMG Performance 4MATIC all-wheel drive system comes standard, and there is a specially-tuned AMG suspension that vastly enhances the vehicle's performance. 19-inch AMG twin 5-spoke wheels are standard equipment as well.
On the outside, the AMG GLA 45 is given the full luxury treatment with a unique AMG styling. The grille has a specially-designed double-crossing set in gorgeous matte chrome. Equipping the AMG GLA 45 in the Night Package gives the body a lot of black chrome accents, and there are four different types of 20-inch wheels that you can swap in.
The elegant-yet-sporty interior comes with standard black headliner, a padded arm rest up front, circular air vents along the dash, and gorgeous aluminum trim. Of course, you can opt for Matte Black Ash, Satin Light Brown Poplar, AMG Carbon Fiber, AMG Black DINAMICA, AMG Black/Red design trim, or AMG Black/Silver design trim. There are also choices for an AMG DINAMICA or AMG DINAMICA/Nappa leather-wrapped performance steering wheel. You can also choose to get the acronym "AMG" illuminated on the front door sills.
Heating comes standard on the AMG GLA 45's front seats. Other standard luxury features include sport seats, MB-Tex/DINAMICA upholstery, and a full decade of service from Mercedes me Assist. You can opt for the ultra-sporty Black "Red Cut" upholstery, designo red seat belts, and AMG performance front seats.
On the infotainment end of things, the AMG GLA 45 is pretty similar to the GLA 250 models. It has standard Bluetooth, HD radio, Garmin Map Pilot pre-writing, and an SD card reader. You can also opt to get three years of updates to the vehicle's map navigation and five years of service from SiriusXM Traffic and Weather.
As far as safety features go, there are a few more standard ones on the AMG GLA 45. Blind spot monitoring is equipped, as are adaptive braking functions, an auto-on windshield wiper for the rear, and LED headlights and taillights. LED daytime running lights are still optional, as are active parking assist, lane keep assist, active distance assist, and the surround-view camera system.
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Which One Should You Choose?
When you buy a luxury vehicle, you probably expect to spend a lot of money. While the 2019 Mercedes Benz GLA Class does give you two affordable lower trim options, the real stand-out in this line-up is the AMG GLA 45. It is also the best deal.
Why? Well, for starters, it massively outperforms the two GLA 250 levels. Their powertrains just feel sluggish and uninspiring. If you are going to be spending a good chunk of change, getting the utmost in performance and standard features is crucial. The AMG GLA 45 will give you everything you could possibly need - and more.