Mercedes-Benz is currently working on a new vehicle that will sit under A-Class which is currently the cheapest Mercedes-Benz you can buy. According to Autobild, a German publication that there are 2 new models being planned. This is not the first time that the rumours have surfaced of a cheaper vehicle. In August of 2020, Axel Heix, who is the chief engineer of Mercedes-Benz compact cars hinted that the German manufacturer might launch more compact cars.
“It’s clearly a huge help to have a fully developed platform that’s capable of carrying alternative drivetrains, so we don’t have to worry about all the bases such as suspension, body-in-white, interior, exterior that’s all well developed and we can ‘simply put an alternative drivetrain in it’,” he commented.
Mercedes-Benz was able to develop three vehicles, namely the A-Class, GLA and CLA in less than two years. This is because they all are based on the highly flexible MFA architecture which allows the manufacturer to easily develop new models without modifying the platform or architecture much. So, the new upcoming small hatchback will be based on this platform. For the new hatchback, the A-class will be shortened and will only have three doors. The other small hatchback will basically be a jacked-up version with plastic cladding all over and roof rails. This will give a more SUV stance and look to the hatchback. Although do not expect it to go off-roading because the new hatchbacks will not have all-wheel drive. It should be safe to assume that they will be front-wheel drive only. The new models are expected to hit the international market in 2023. The engine is expected to be a 1.6-litre turbo unit that should produce around 120 PS.
Having said that, it is unlikely that the new models will be offered in India. That is because three-door vehicles do not really sell well in India especially luxury vehicles. There is no denying the fact that three-door vehicles are a very niche product for India. So, if Mercedes-Benz does decide to bring the new hatchbacks to India, they would have to figure out a way to offer 5-door versions. The German manufacturer sold 7,893 vehicles in 2020. Mercedes-Benz has also announced that they will be launching 15 new models in 2021 for the Indian market. Some of the new upcoming vehicles include the A-Class Limousine and second-gen GLA whereas the new generation of S-Class will launch in the second half of 2021. The A-Class Limousine and the GLA were showcased at the Auto Expo 2020 but because of the coronavirus pandemic, the launch of both the vehicles was postponed significantly. The bookings for the A-Class Limousine have been opened throughout the 2020 and the new sedan is expected to launch around March or April. After the A-Class Limousine, the German manufacturer will launch the second-gen GLA and then the Mercedes AMT GT Black Series. The GT Black Series is the most powerful AMG V8 that the manufacturer has ever produced. It produces 730 PS of max power and a peak torque output of a massive 800 Nm. Currently, Mercedes-Benz sells the AMG GT, which costs Rs. 2.27 Crores ex-showroom.