Mercedes has revealed images and details about the shooting brake variant of the CLA four-door coupe. A small estate is nearly unique in a class filled with hatchback and coupe variants of the BMW 1-Series and Audi A3 – so the Stuttgart brand aims to build on the success of the larger CLS Shooting Brake with this addition to the range.
Compared to the regular CLA, it all remains pretty much identical up to to the level of the rear seats. From there onward, a longer roofline slopes downwards in a single curve towards the rear bumper, improving access and room in the rear of the cabin, as well as allowing for a more practical boot. The rear takes inspiration from the CLS Shooting Brake. The roofline tapers inwards slightly at the rear to give the rear haunches a more muscular look, while “arrow shaped” tail lights ape those on the bigger model.
Upon opening the square-shaped rear door (still with flameless windows), rear passengers will discover an extra 4cm of headroom over the regular CLA. AMG-line versions are equipped with a rear bench that Mercedes call a 2+1 layout – the middle seat is all but sacrificed in order to improve comfort for the two outer passengers.
Predictably, the boot volume has increased over the regular model, ranging from 495 litres up to 1354 litres when the rear seats are folded flat. If you’re carrying four passengers but still need a little bit more boot space, the rear bench can be switched to a more upright “cargo” position, which frees up an extra 100 litres. There is a 12v socket in the rear, a locking boot floor and smart aluminium boot strips can be ticked on the options list to make it all feel more Mercedes-ish.
In the front of the cabin, everything is pretty much identical to the CLA, and by extension the A-Class and the GLA too. That means a very attractive, well made dash, with three stylish central air vents sitting beneath a display screen, which some testers felt looks like a bit of an afterthought.
The same range of engines are available in the shooting brake as are available in the regular CLA. That means the entry-level model gets a 2.1-litre turbo diesel, producing 136hp and returning a claimed 72.4mpg, to a 2.0-litre turbo petrol model, making use of its 211hp to sprint to 62mph from standstill in 6.9 seconds.
In addition to the regular Sport, AMG Line and ‘Engineered by AMG’ trim lines, Mercedes is offering a limited run of the OrangeArt Edition model. Based on the AMG Line trim, it is distinguished by orange highlights on the 18-inch alloy wheels, headlights, grille and seats, which, surprisingly, isn’t as garish as it sounds.
Mercedes has fitted the latest version of its Collision Prevention Assist technology as standard to the shooting brake. It warns the driver of an impending collision ahead, and if they do not react in time, will also apply the brakes, in the hope of avoiding the accident altogether, or at least reducing its severity. Mercedes believes that this system could reduce serious rear end collisions by up to 30 percent.
When can I buy one?
Mercedes hasn’t yet given details on pricing, but expect it to cost around £1,500 over the regular model. Official UK sales will start in January, with first deliveries taking place two months later.