Mercedes is perhaps most famous for the sumptuous interiors of its cars, and the GLA-Class is no exception to this rule. Aside from its flawless design and use of upscale materials, the interior of the SUV is quite spacious, though it can't match the sheer practical value presented but more budget-friendly, mainstream brands. The tech is where the vehicle shines, with a slick MBUX infotainment suite as the centerpiece. Unfortunately, Mercedes-Benz has a habit of making you pay more than the already premium price to unlock some of the best features, which is why you get two small screens as standard with a whole lot of blank space surrounding them, while the twin 10.25-inch screens seen below are left to the options list.
The interior of the GLA looks and feels tighter than it actually is, but it's a mix of factors that make it seem as such. For one, the seating position is very upright, with the dash appearing closer to the occupants than it does in other Mercedes products. The large screen setup protruding from the top of the dash does little to reduce this effect. Despite this, it's easy for occupants to find enough space, although we wouldn't recommend long trips with three adults in the back seats. The front row enjoys the lion's share of the cabin space with 39 inches of headroom and 41 inches of legroom. Rear headroom is 38.1 inches, though a few inches of legroom are lost, leaving 38 inches remaining. The front seats are both power-adjustable as standard, with heating and ventilation of these seats being optional.
|Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class SUV Trims||GLA 250||GLA 250 4MATIC|
|Headroom Front Seat||40.8 in.||40.8 in.|
|Headroom Back Seat||38.1 in.||38.1 in.|
|Legroom Front Seat||41.1 in.||41.1 in.|
|Legroom Back Seat||38.4 in.||38.4 in.|
|Shoulder Room Front||55.9 in.||55.9 in.|
|Shoulder Room Rear||54.8 in.||54.8 in.|
|Hip Room, Front||57.3 in.||57.3 in.|
|Hip Room, Rear||57.3 in.||57.3 in.|
King of perceived quality, Mercedes has decked out the 2022 GLA 250 in a selection of materials that make it look and feel more luxurious than its base price suggests. As standard, the interior of the US-spec GLA comes dressed in MB-Tex synthetic leather. Color choices include Black and Macchiato Beige at no cost, while if you spec the $2,600 AMG Line styling package, Neva Grey/Black and Black MB-Tex/Dinamica with red stitching become available, also at no cost. For an additional $1,450, you can upgrade to genuine leather. Black and Bahia Brown are included but Titanium Grey/Black and Classic Red/Black require the AMG Line package. Leather also requires at least heated front seats at extra cost or both heated and ventilated front seats.
The trim inserts have fewer options at just four finishes. Spiral Look and Carbon Structure won't cost you anything, but the latter requires the AMG Line package. Natural Grain Black Linden and Natural Grain Brown Walnut wood are $325 extra. However, no amount of money can remove the gloss black plastic that surrounds the center stack. This looks good when new, but is a magnet for fingerprints and just looks tacky as time goes by.
Despite its SUV status, the GLA isn't the most practical of vehicles. Behind the rear seats are just 15.4 cubic feet of cargo space. That's less than what the Audi Q3 and BMW X1 bring to the table, and minuscule in comparison to what non-premium options like the Honda CR-V deliver. Still, it is sufficient for a few carry-on suitcases and daily errands like shopping shouldn't be a problem. If you do need more space in a pinch, the second-row seats can be folded down in a 40/20/40 split to open up 50.5 cubic feet.
Around the cabin, there are enough nooks and crannies to store all your loose items. These include four door pockets, a center armrest storage bin, a pair of cupholders in front, and a standard glovebox. You can option on an adjustable rear middle seat with another cupholder.
|Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class SUV Trims||GLA 250||GLA 250 4MATIC|
|Box Width (Wheelhousings)||41.3 in.||41.3 in.|
|Box Height (Area)||29.2 in.||29.2 in.|
No Merc leaves the factory without a long list of standard luxury, convenience, and safety features. Even as the entry point to the SUV lineup, the GLA has plenty to be proud of. The front seats are power-adjustable and include a memory function with three profiles, while the steering column is four-way manually adjustable. Other comforts include dual-zone automatic climate control and available heated seats. For added convenience, keyless entry and start, a seven-inch digital driver's display, as well as remote start and a power liftgate are all standard. The safety suite is commendable if a bit lacking in some areas, comprising forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, blind-spot monitoring, crosswind assist, attention assist, and a rearview camera. This can be expanded upon with parking sensors, adaptive cruise control, active lane change assist, a surround-view camera, and a head-up display if you are willing to pay extra. Going all-in will see options like ventilated front seats, 64-color ambient lighting, dual 10.25-inch screens, a heated steering wheel, and surround-view camera become available.
The standard MBUX infotainment system is adequate but not exciting. The seven-inch screen feels too small, as the housing for it and the seven-inch driver display are encompassed in is actually ready-made for the larger screens. Still, even in base form, MBUX includes Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, HD Radio, and Bluetooth. Four USB-C ports and six speakers are standard. The upgraded dual-10.25-inch displays are preferable, and navigation is available as well. They also fill the dash better and are better to operate. That said, there are several ways to interact with the infotainment system. The main touchscreen is the obvious option, but there is also a touchpad, steering wheel-mounted controls, and a voice command function. As far as available options go, a wireless charging pad is a $200 option and a 12-speaker Burmester sound system with 590 watts and a nine-channel amp is an $850 box to tick.