Mercedes-Benz A-Class sedan leaks online

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This is the first time we seen a saloon variant of the A-Class - until now the coupe lines of the CLA have been the only option for a small 4-door Mercedes-Benz. It is one of eight new compact models planned by the automaker, including the recently unveiled fourth-generation A-Class hatchback together with successors to the existing B-Class, CLA, CLA Shooting Brake and GLA as well as a new compact CUV likely to bear the name GLB and a yet-to-be-confirmed model.

The new car's styling is very much like the Concept A sedan shown in Shanghai a year ago.

The A-Class being shown at Auto China 2018 in Beijing is a China-only long-wheelbase version of the new sedan, stretched about 2.4 inches between the wheels to provide a bigger backseat, which in China may be where the owner rides.

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USA powertrains have not been announced; the lineup for China includes 1.33-liter and 2.0-liter four-cylinder gasoline engines, while Europe also gets a diesel. Expect 1.5-litre and 2.0-litre four-cylinder diesels for European markets. A seven-speed, dual-clutch transmission is the only one available for the Chinese market. "This long wheelbase version offers added space, with a rear compartment dedicated to meeting local preferences". The A-Class L will be assembled in China, at the Beijing Benz Automotive site, which is the fruition of a partnership between Daimler and BAIC Motor. Deliveries are due to begin in the third quarter of this year. Ltd.'s plant in Beijing, a joint venture between Daimler and BAIC Motor, is the world's largest Mercedes-Benz passenger vehicle plant, and the only one to manufacture front-wheel drive and rear-wheel drive models as well as engines on one site.

As Autocar India reported in February 2018, Mercedes is conducting a study evaluating the potential of introducing the new A-Class (standard wheelbase) in India. Will the greater practicality of the sedan's rear seat appeal to them?

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