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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I drove the cla 250 today.

The Drive
The car feels pretty powerful. (And I had some powerful cars before coming to the states panamera 4s, cayenne s, r8 v8)

In first gear it's a little sluggish. But once you get it into second gear everything is good. Also I didn't feel any turbo lag. I guess what I am trying to say is you definitely can tell this is a turbo charged car. It really does lags smoothness from a v6.

The gear box feels very responsive. I didn't get any unwillingness to down shift (like in some reviews).

The ride
Suspension is very very stiff. I think this is actually the worst part of the car. Combined with the turbo kicking in, it actually makes the car feel somewhat uncomfortable (may be this is because I tested the car in mid town manhattan). Test car had the standard 17 inch.

I ordered the 45 with the 19s. So I will most prob reconsider the 19s...

Handling
The cla feels light and nibble, actually handles much much better than the c class that I had driven. It's very un-Mercedes!!

Others
Unlike the panamera I had, visibility was good, not much blind spots.
 

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So I drove the cla 250 today.

The Drive
The car feels pretty powerful. (And I had some powerful cars before coming to the states panamera 4s, cayenne s, r8 v8)

In first gear it's a little sluggish. But once you get it into second gear everything is good. Also I didn't feel any turbo lag. I guess what I am trying to say is you definitely can tell this is a turbo charged car. It really does lags smoothness from a v6.

The gear box feels very responsive. I didn't get any unwillingness to down shift (like in some reviews).

The ride
Suspension is very very stiff. I think this is actually the worst part of the car. Combined with the turbo kicking in, it actually makes the car feel somewhat uncomfortable (may be this is because I tested the car in mid town manhattan). Test car had the standard 17 inch.

I ordered the 45 with the 19s. So I will most prob reconsider the 19s...

Handling
The cla feels light and nibble, actually handles much much better than the c class that I had driven. It's very un-Mercedes!!

Others
Unlike the panamera I had, visibility was good, not much blind spots.
How's the rear view ? Can you back up safely ?
The stiff ride off the base 17" may be due to the run flats.
The CLA45 has non run flats so that should offset the lower profile a bit. I think those that orders the AMG Driver's package are going to need frequent visits to their dentists.
Only concern is the lack of a spare tire for the CLA45...
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah my dealer told me to stay away from the Amg driver pack. He told me that the standard Amg suspension is just acceptable for him. Anything stiffer would be unacceptable.

The car I drove had the rear view camera. The rear window is a little small (prob due to the slop line). But I could clearly see out the back when driving. I would recommend getting the rear view camera (or the parking sensor) just for parking sake.

Generally speaking visibility is very good. Mercedes generally have very good visibility.
 

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Yeah my dealer told me to stay away from the Amg driver pack. He told me that the standard Amg suspension is just acceptable for him. Anything stiffer would be unacceptable.

The car I drove had the rear view camera. The rear window is a little small (prob due to the slop line). But I could clearly see out the back when driving. I would recommend getting the rear view camera (or the parking sensor) just for parking sake.

Generally speaking visibility is very good. Mercedes generally have very good visibility.
Thanks for the feedback.
 

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Interesting, I test drove the CLA250 with the 225/45 17" stock run flat tires and did not find it stiff at all. But then again I like a car that feels very planted without any floaty aspects to the suspension. I wanted to test drive the Sport Pkg version but the only one they had already sold by the time I got to the dealer. I found visibility to be fine but I did not have the opportunity to back up the car as there was a line of people waiting to test drive it and was asked to not park it. As for the responsiveness, this is in no way a performance car but quite satisfactory. Not sure if the drive train was set to Economy or Performance but as the shift points were generally low I suspect it was in Economy.
 

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Yeah my dealer told me to stay away from the Amg driver pack. He told me that the standard Amg suspension is just acceptable for him. Anything stiffer would be unacceptable.

The car I drove had the rear view camera. The rear window is a little small (prob due to the slop line). But I could clearly see out the back when driving. I would recommend getting the rear view camera (or the parking sensor) just for parking sake.

Generally speaking visibility is very good. Mercedes generally have very good visibility.
The upgraded suspension isn't good for our American roads. I would only reccommend someone going with the drivers package if they plan to track the car.

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Interesting, I test drove the CLA250 with the 225/45 17" stock run flat tires and did not find it stiff at all. But then again I like a car that feels very planted without any floaty aspects to the suspension. I wanted to test drive the Sport Pkg version but the only one they had already sold by the time I got to the dealer. I found visibility to be fine but I did not have the opportunity to back up the car as there was a line of people waiting to test drive it and was asked to not park it. As for the responsiveness, this is in no way a performance car but quite satisfactory. Not sure if the drive train was set to Economy or Performance but as the shift points were generally low I suspect it was in Economy.
May be it was because I just drove the Lexus IS before the cla. I have to say the Lexus was far more comfortable.

I should also note that I only test the car in sport model.
 

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Did you drive an IS250 or 350, with or without the F-Sport package? Can you comment on how the IS compared with the CLA? Thanks!
 

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The upgraded suspension isn't good for our American roads. I would only reccommend someone going with the drivers package if they plan to track the car.

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I plan on ordering the AMG driver pkg, is it really going to be that bad you think?
 

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I plan on ordering the AMG driver pkg, is it really going to be that bad you think?
I believe all the CLA45 press cars driven at Bilster Berg had the Driver Package since they had to chase, and I understand, quite successfully a professionally driven SLS.
The press also had a day or two on public road with the 45s and no one wrote about poor ride. That said, German roads are smooth and well maintained. The US may be a different story.
I am staying away from the package simply because I know I will pay with ride quality for handling benefits my driving style won't exploit. California roads are spotty and as I age, civilized
ride appears to gain priority...Do you envision yourself pushing the car that much ?
 

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I believe all the CLA45 press cars driven at Bilster Berg had the Driver Package since they had to chase, and I understand, quite successfully a professionally driven SLS.
The press also had a day or two on public road with the 45s and no one wrote about poor ride. That said, German roads are smooth and well maintained. The US may be a different story.
I am staying away from the package simply because I know I will pay with ride quality for handling benefits my driving style won't exploit. California roads are spotty and as I age, civilized
ride appears to gain priority...Do you envision yourself pushing the car that much ?
To be honest I feel like if I have a chance to upgrade the suspension and keep it OE that would be a plus. My current ride I feel could use a stiffer/tighter suspension and there was no factory upgrade option only aftermarket.
I'm definitely hoping to drive either suspension setup before I order. Also will listen to feedback by posters. The tough thing about that is everyone's opinion on ride comfort is different, I like the stiff feel and no body roll.


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To be honest I feel like if I have a chance to upgrade the suspension and keep it OE that would be a plus. My current ride I feel could use a stiffer/tighter suspension and there was no factory upgrade option only aftermarket.
I'm definitely hoping to drive either suspension setup before I order. Also will listen to feedback by posters. The tough thing about that is everyone's opinion on ride comfort is different, I like the stiff feel and no body roll.


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Recently drove a friend's Mini Cooper S and it reminded me what it's like when there was virtual absence of body roll when flying through a corner.
I can clearly see why it can be addictive. The ride, though, was choppy.
 

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Recently drove a friend's Mini Cooper S and it reminded me what it's like when there was virtual absence of body roll when flying through a corner.
I can clearly see why it can be addictive. The ride, though, was choppy.
I hear ya Keith. Both you and Ryan (45AMG) are causing me to question this decision more than I had done so before. ?


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I hear ya Keith. Both you and Ryan (45AMG) are causing me to question this decision more than I had done so before. ��


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That's the down side of ordering a car sight unseen. I am dying to get in a CLA250 with Sport Package to feel out the ride. And that's to decide standard 18" versus optional 19" wheels.
Trouble is all the CLA250 will have run flats so I really am not accurately trying out the ride quality. I know you are waiting a bit later to get the car and that may be the smart thing to do.
 

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That's the down side of ordering a car sight unseen. I am dying to get in a CLA250 with Sport Package to feel out the ride. And that's to decide standard 18" versus optional 19" wheels.
Trouble is all the CLA250 will have run flats so I really am not accurately trying out the ride quality. I know you are waiting a bit later to get the car and that may be the smart thing to do.
+1 about the site unseen. Yes it sucks because you want have that apples to apples comparison with the runflats.


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I hear ya Keith. Both you and Ryan (45AMG) are causing me to question this decision more than I had done so before. ?


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I currently drive a 135i coupe with stock suspension and its stiff enough to where I didn't need to buy the BMW performance suspension. With that said I don't see a need for it.

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+1 about the site unseen. Yes it sucks because you want have that apples to apples comparison with the runflats.


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I already invited you to come down to ca when I pickup my car heh.

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
Did you drive an IS250 or 350, with or without the F-Sport package? Can you comment on how the IS compared with the CLA? Thanks!
Endaar, I drove the IS 250 without the F-Sport pack.

Pros in the IS
The first thing I notice in the IS was that its very quite.
The seats are much softer than the CLA, much more comfortable than the CLA seats. (Again, I was in the standard CLA seats, the leather seat I sat in at the motor show actually felt much more comfortable)
The material used feels like it is 10k more than the CLA I sat in today (the CLA I drove had the cow friendly leather, it did not have the exclusive pack, so the dash is just covered with cheap looking hard plastic)
The fake leather used to cover the dash is very nice and soft (nicer than the MB-tex I saw in the CLA 45 at the motor expo), in fact, I thought it was real leather till I read the spec!
May be I am getting OLD, but I actually liked the IS a lot!

Con in the IS
The 250 engine is lazy, it needs more power (and there will be a new engine soon, hate buying a car knowing it will be outdated within a year)
Once you opt for the 350 plus a few options, you a close to 48k, pretty close to a CLA 45 (an edition 1 250 is still almost 7k cheaper). The AMG is just a much more special car to me!
I drove the IS 250 at around 3pm, there was a lot of reflection on the dash and speedo. At one point, there was so much reflection, I had trouble reading the speedo. (I didn't find the same issue on the CLA, and it had the pano roof)
Visibility in the CLA is better than the IS. I think there is more blind spot in the IS
Not a fan of the Lexus entertainment system, don't like the whole mouse pad idea
The CLA's system feels and look more "developed" to me

At the end of the date, I still prefer the CLA over the IS. I don't know why, but I just can't justify paying the 50k for a done up toyota.
 
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