The smallest SUV in the Mercedes-Benz stable, the GLA-Class is presented in two trim levels. The only difference between the GLA 250 and GLA 250 4Matic is that the former gets FWD and the latter AWD. Under the hood is a 2.0-liter turbocharged mated to an eight-speed dual-clutch auto to develop 221 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque.
Both models ride on 18-inch alloy wheels and feature full-LED exterior lighting. Inside, the seats are upholstered in MB-Tex synthetic leather. The front seats are power-adjustable with memory functions, and dual-zone climate control keeps the cabin comfortable. The seven-inch touchscreen grants access to Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and HD Radio. The safety suite comprises blind-spot monitoring, forward collision avoidance, and attention assist.
Available features include a panorama roof, an adaptive damping suspension, dual 10.25-inch displays, heated front seats, and additional safety systems like active steering assist, parking sensors, pre-safe plus, active lane-keeping assist, and route-based speed adaptation.
The starting price of the 2022 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class is reasonable for a premium vehicle in the USA. As the FWD version, the GLA 250 is the cheapest at $36,400, while the GLA 250 4Matic adds AWD for an extra $2,000 at an MSRP of $38,400. Both are more expensive than their respective BMW or Audi counterparts albeit by only a few hundred dollars. These prices do not include registration, licensing, or Mercedes' $1,050 destination charge.
Mercedes gives buyers a number of ways to customize their GLA in the form of AMG Line exterior packages. The standard $2,600 package adds 19-inch AMG wheels, AMG body styling, a unique grille, a sport steering wheel, and aluminum paddle shifters. The $3,000 option adds the Night Package too with its gloss black exterior accents.
However, it is the feature packages that will really appeal to buyers, since they add many of the amenities that Mercedes strangely leaves off the standard list. The Premium Package ($1,750) swaps out the standard displays for a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster and a 10.25-inch infotainment touchscreen. It also adds power-folding side mirrors, hands-free access, and keyless go. The Driver Assistance Package ($1,700, but requires both the Premium and Multimedia packages) adds a whole whack of features, including pre-safe plus with pre-safe sound, active steering assist, evasive steering assist, active lane-keeping assist, and active lane change assist, among others. The Multimedia Package ($1,295, but requires the Premium Package too) is mostly pointless, adding MB navigation with augmented video, and speed limit assist. Your money would be better spent on the head-up display ($1,100), the Burmester sound system ($850), or the panorama roof ($1,500).
The only difference between the two GLA-Class models is their drivetrain, so the deciding factor will be whether or not you really need the added traction of the 4Matic. Otherwise, it comes down to which packages or options you should include. The one absolute must-have is the Driver Assistance Package since it adds so much value and takes much of the strain off driving. We'd also suggest the $990 Adaptive Damping System to smooth out road imperfections and the Premium Package makes the cabin a far more pleasant place to spend time thanks to the larger displays, while also adding some nice conveniences. Lastly, the Burmester sound system is hard to pass up if you're going to be hauling the whole family around regularly. All of this brings the price of the GLA to over $43,000 including the destination charge.