The Mercedes-Benz GLA made its Indian debut earlier this year at the 2014 Delhi Auto Expo. We had earlier reported that the car had been undergoing homologation and now, the car has been spotted testing in India, loaded with testing equipment. Bookings of the GLA had commenced last month along with that of the S-Class S 350 CDI and the car is expected to be launched here in the next few months.
The Mercedes-Benz GLA is built on the German manufacturer’s Modular Front Architecture (MFA) platform, which also underpins other front-wheel-drive cars like the A-Class and the B-Class. The car is based on the GLA concept, which was unveiled at the 2013 Shanghai Motor Show, though the characteristics have been toned down to make it more production-feasible. The test mule had AMG-spec wheels and an aggressive body kit which hints that the car might be a Launch Edition.
It was earlier speculated that the car will be launched only in the GLA 220 CDI variant, though the report suggests that the test mule was a petrol-powered variant. The petrol variant in question houses a four-cylinder 1.6-litre unit which produces 156bhp and 250Nm of torque and is badged as GLA 200 in other global markets. On the other hand, the diesel variants will be powered by 2.2-litre diesel engine which churns out 135bhp and 300Nm of torque. Both the engines will be offered with a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox.
Mercedes-Benz has been aggressively expanding its line-up in an attempt to increase its customer base in India. As a part of its strategy, Mercedes-Benz will also bring in the high-performance GLA 45 AMG to India, a few months after the launch of its ‘regular’ variants. The Mercedes-Benz GLA will compete with other compact SUVs in the market like the BMW X1 and the Audi Q3. As its other two German rivals have been around for quite a while now, the GLA might have a tough time competing with the Q3 and the X1.