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Mercedes CLA Concept Debuts With Sleek Design And 466+ Mile Electric Range | Carscoops

Mercedes is previewing the next-generation CLA with an electric concept at the Munich Motor Show

September 3, 2023 at 14:25

 Mercedes CLA Concept Debuts With Sleek Design And 466+ Mile Electric Range

Mercedes has unveiled the electric CLA concept on the eve of the Munich Motor Show.

Designed to preview the upcoming production model, the concept is a sleek four-door coupe with a shark nose front end. It features a fully enclosed and illuminated grille as well as distinctive headlights that show the Mercedes star logo.

Speaking of lights, slender illuminated strips nearly encompass the entire vehicle. They’re a questionable touch, but the strips have a “stylish mirrored chrome look when unilluminated.”

Putting the lights aside, the concept has a rakish windscreen that flows into a gently sloping roof. Designers also gave the car streamlined bodywork, a minimalist greenhouse, and a longer wheelbase that promises to provide a more accommodating rear passenger compartment.

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The streamlined design is further enhanced by flush-mounted door handles, while the 21-inch wheels are sure to grab attention. Other highlights include a curvaceous rear end and an illuminated glass roof that shows animated stars.

More: 2025 Mercedes CLA EV Spied For The First Time With Production Lighting Units

The cabin embraces “tech-infused minimalist elegance” and is dominated by five displays on the dashboard. Mercedes didn’t go into many specifics, but the three central displays run the all-new MB.OS operating system and are apparently powered by a water-cooled chip from NVIDIA.

Mercedes said the operating system can be tailored to your personal preferences and offers extensive customization. It also has a virtual assistant and a private art gallery for showing images from your NFT wallet, so you can be reminded about all the money you wasted on a fad that quickly flamed out.

Elsewhere, there are circular displays that are integrated into turbine-style air vents. Mercedes said the “physical air vents are positioned discreetly behind the screen and [are] designed to convey the impression of cooling ribs – an ingenious configuration that doubles as a source of ambient lighting.”

Besides an assortment of screens, the concept has two-tone nappa leather seats, aluminum accents, and a floating center console. The latter boasts an illuminated cup holder and a wireless smartphone charger with an illuminated transparent surface.

The car rides on the Mercedes Modular Architecture (MMA) and will be offered with two different batteries. The entry-level battery has a lithium-iron phosphate chemistry, while the “top-level variant features an anode design with silicon-oxide content for excellent energy density.”

Mercedes didn’t go into specifics, but said the battery is “remarkably small” and is lighter as “its cell modules are held in place using adhesive rather than screws.” There’s no word on capacity, but the model is expected to have an energy consumption of 5.2 mi/kWh (12 kWh/100 km) and a WLTP range in excess of 466 miles (750 km).

While a number of questions remain, the car has an 800V architecture and a 250 kW DC fast charging capability. This will enable the model to get up to 248 miles (400 km) of range in as little as 15 minutes. The automaker also mentioned a market-specific bidirectional charging capability, which will allow for Vehicle-to-Home (V2H) and Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) functions.

Motivation is provided by a 235 hp (175 kW / 238 PS) electric motor that weighs less than 243 lbs (110 kg) and has a “significantly lower share of heavy rare earths than previous generations.” The company added the electric drive unit has an “extremely high energy efficiency of up to 93 percent from battery to wheel in long distance driving … due to meticulous minimization of losses.”

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Besides an efficient powertrain, the concept has a Level 2 semi-autonomous driving system that is aided by a LiDAR sensor as well as multiple cameras.

We’ll learn more about the production model in the coming months, but Mercedes CEO Ola Källenius said “The Concept CLA Class is the forerunner for an entirely new all-electric segment of entry-level vehicles at Mercedes-Benz. The range will comprise a total of four new models – a four-door coupe, a shooting brake and two stunning SUVs – each with significantly elevated product substance.”

Photos: Baldauf / ten Brink for CarScoops



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