Real tailwind for a new start looks different. These days, Mercedes is bringing a facelift to its front-wheel drive platform, which will be shrunk from seven to four models in the next generation. In addition to the two SUVs, the Mercedes CLA is a practical and attractive choice, especially as a shooting brake in the current series. There will no longer be combustion engines and therefore diesel versions of the successor, but the most powerful diesel engine in particular is so convincing in the refreshed CLA Shooting Brake that it is likely to enjoy significant demand even after the launch of the electric series. Therefore, it will remain in the program for some time.

Visually, the latest revision didn’t have much effect, especially from the outside. The usual trifecta is slight modifications to the front, rear and especially the light units. Hardly anything has changed inside, but the new operating system in particular not only looks better; It also works faster and more intuitively than the previous version, although the animated screens remain small at 10.25 inches diagonally. Bitter: the instruments behind the easy-grip steering wheel and with too many buttons are only seven inches in size as standard and can only be expanded to the 10.25-inch diagonal for an additional charge. Welcome to the digital age at the end of 2023. It’s even more pleasant that the heated comfort seats are now standard on the CLA and they adapt to the body of any size – making long journeys noticeably more pleasant. In general, the standard equipment has been expanded to include standard features such as LED headlights, high beam assistant, reversing camera and USB ports. Unfortunately, in the lower versions, useful details such as an electric tailgate and the mirror package with dimming and folding functions are only available for an extra charge. The space available in the 4.69 meter long station wagon remains okay; But you shouldn’t expect miracles, especially in the second row. At most two medium-sized people will feel at home here. The loading volume: 495 to 1,360 liters.

When you look at the performance data, they are largely unchanged for the Mercedes CLA 220d, which costs at least 51,580 euros. In contrast to the petrol engines, which are completely electrified with a 48-volt electrical system and are therefore more economical, these remain the same diesel engine as usual and therefore do not have any additional range or performance like the plug-in hybrids. That doesn’t change the fact that the two-liter diesel, which weighs just under 1.7 tons, is probably the best CLA drive. Its two-liter diesel still delivers 140 kW / 190 hp and a maximum torque of 400 Nm, which allows the lifestyle station wagon to pull through extremely lively and agilely. Okay, the four-cylinder common rail diesel is not exactly a whisper diesel, but it is an ideal mix of dynamics and efficiency. From a standstill, the front-wheel drive car accelerates to 100 km/h in 7.3 seconds and the top speed of 237 km/h is pleasantly suitable for motorways in the age of sluggish electric models, with plenty of reserves for quick overtaking maneuvers with a fully loaded vehicle.

The fuel consumption of 5.1 liters of diesel per 100 kilometers is just as pleasantly low as any abnormalities in the chassis or drive. The seven-speed dual-clutch transmission goes well with the high-torque diesel, the suspension is firm, but not hard despite the large wheels and if there is one thing to complain about, it is the lack of all-wheel drive in the options list. This is reserved for the CLA 250 petrol engine and the AMG versions. But especially on winding roads, the driving forces of 190 hp and 400 Nm of torque are clearly noticeable in the steering wheel, which is now covered with leather as standard. All-wheel drive would work well here. But it’s the range that can be pleasing, because the 51 liter tank ensures that you can travel up to 1,000 kilometers without stopping if you keep your foot on the accelerator.