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The 2018 Mercedes-Benz GLA Revealed With Powerful New Look

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Unveiled this week at the 2017 Detroit Auto Show.

Mercedes is having absolutely no trouble selling its baby crossover, so when it came to giving the GLA a refresh for the 2018MY, words like 'subtle' and 'understated' were doubtless at the top of the design brief. No need to mess with a winning formula, after all. A new 'Canyon Beige' body color, a new set of alloys, and restyled front and rear bumpers are the primary exterior upgrades for the GLA250, GLA250 4Matic and Mercedes-AMG GLA45. However the latter received some additional treatment.

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The range-topper also received a sharpened front end with LED headlamps (optional on the GLA250) that Mercedes claims will last "the entire lifetime of the car," a new rear diffuser insert, spoiler lip on the roof spoiler, and a smattering of silver chrome trim. Without altering the sheetmetal, Mercedes has optimized the GLA's aerodynamics resulting in improved fuel consumption and reduced cabin noise at high speeds. A more upscale interior sports a redesigned gauge cluster, added chrome trim, new seat covers, and the free-standing 8-inch touchscreen now comes as standard across the range with smartphone integration including Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

A 360-degree surround-view camera offers an overhead view of the car, and an optional hands-free access allows the trunk to be opened and closed by waving your foot under the rear bumper. Autonomous braking in the form of Active Brake Assist will help out slow-reacting drivers, while a driver drowsiness detector dubbed Attention Assist will warn drivers that are nodding off by monitoring steering behavior. Engines remain unchanged, with the GLA250 using a 208-hp 2.0-liter turbo-four and the GLA45 a handbuilt 2.0-liter four-pot rated at 375 hp and 350 lb-ft of torque mated to an AMG-tuned 4Matic AWD system and seven speed DCT.

Buyers opting for the new AMG Performance Studio Package can stand out with a Night or Cosmos Black body accented with either Matte Graphite Grey or Yellow, a theme that continues into the cabin. Set to go on sale this summer, prices for the 2018 Mercedes GLA will be announced nearer the time.