2024 Mercedes Benz CLA 6 e1675210465874

2024 Mercedes-Benz CLA: New Baby Benz Gains Turbo-Hybrid Powertrain & Updated Styling

Mercedes-Benz has discontinued the A-Class for 2023, making the new CLA the most affordable car in the German automaker’s North American lineup. The 2024 Mercedes-Benz CLA officially earns the “Baby Benz” title once held by the exemplary C-Class, which could be a blessing or a curse. It means the 2024 CLA is now an ambassador for the Mercedes-Benz brand, a gateway to the premium ownership experience of driving a three-pointed star.

2024 Mercedes-Benz CLA: What’s New?

The refreshed Mercedes-Benz CLA remains part of the second-gen variant that arrived at dealers in 2020. However, it has reworked front and rear facades, new standard features, and an updated turbocharged four-cylinder engine with the brand’s 48-volt mild-hybrid system. The changes include new paint colors (Starling Blue and Hyper Blue), a refreshed MBUX infotainment system, and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity.

Mild-Hybrid Powertrain

Under the hood of the 2024 Mercedes-Benz CLA is a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-pot with 221 horsepower and 258 lb-ft. of torque. It’s the same engine with a similar output as the previous CLA. However, the new CLA has a belt-driven starter-generator Mercedes said contributes 13 more horsepower in short bursts. Power goes to the front or all four wheels via a slick seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox.

Mercedes-AMG CLA 35 & CLA 45 S

Arriving later in 2023 are speedier versions of the CLA, namely the AMG CLA 35 and AMG CLA 45 S. The former has a tuned 2.0-liter turbocharged engine and a 48-volt mild-hybrid system to produce 302 horsepower and 295 lb-ft. of torque. Meanwhile, the AMG CLA 45 S has inherited the omnipotent M139 turbocharged four-cylinder from the Mercedes-AMG C 43 sedan, currently the world’s most potent four-cylinder production engine. It pumps out 416 horsepower and 369 lb-ft. of torque in AMG CLA 45 S guise.

Both variants have an AMG SPEEDSHIFT eight-speed dual-clutch automatic and an all-wheel drivetrain. However, the AMG CLA 45 S has a fully-variable AWD system with AMG Torque Control or torque vectoring capabilities to make good use of its tire-shredding power.

How Fast Is The 2024 Mercedes-Benz CLA?

The base Mercedes-Benz CLA 250 rushes from zero to 60 mph in 6.3 seconds, which is not bad for an entry-level compact luxury car. If speed is of utmost importance, the AMG variants will satiate your needs. The AMG CLA 35 rockets to 60 mph in 4.8 seconds and has a 155 mph top speed, while the AMG CLA 45 S takes only four seconds and tops out at 167 mph.

Modernized Features

As expected from a modern Benz, the new CLA is brimming with technology and other posh features. The list includes high-performance LED headlights, LED taillamps, a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster, a 10.25-inch MBUX infotainment touchscreen, a Nappa leather-wrapped steering wheel, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated wing mirrors, a panoramic sunroof, and interior ambient lighting.

In addition, CLA AMG variants have new alloy wheel designs (up to 19 inches), standard sport seats (or optional AMG performance seats), open-pore wood trim, and two-tone leather upholstery.

2024 Mercedes-Benz CLA interior layout.
2024 Mercedes-Benz CLA interior layout. Photo: MBUSA.

Advanced Safety Features

The 2024 Mercedes-Benz CLA has forward collision mitigation, blind-spot warning, automatic emergency braking, a driver attention warning system, safe exit assist, a 360-degree camera, and more.

2024 Mercedes-Benz CLA: Pricing & Availability

Mercedes-Benz has yet to announce the official MSRP figures for its newest CLA sedan. We reckon base prices to start at about $42,500 for the CLA 250 and $45,000 for the CLA 250 4MATIC. Furthermore, we expect the AMG CLA 35 and AMG CLA 45 S to start around $52,000 and $59,000, respectively. Every new CLA has a four-year/50,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty, although options are available to extend that coverage.

Our free and easy search tools* show which Mercedes dealerships have the best deals on the new CLA when it becomes available in mid-2023.

The 2024 Mercedes-Benz CLA has big shoes to fill, but we’re confident it will leave a lasting impression on first-time Mercedes buyers and long-time fans of the brand. The competition is not resting on its laurels, as the BMW 2 Series and all-new Acura Integra are strong contenders.

Alvin Reyes is an Automoblog feature columnist and an expert in sports and performance cars. He studied civil aviation, aeronautics, and accountancy in his younger years and is still very much smitten to his former Lancer GSR and Galant SS. He also likes fried chicken, music, and herbal medicine.

Photos & Source: MBUSA.

*Although always free for you, Automoblog and its partners may receive a commission when you use the services provided through that link. MSRP figures are subject to change.