FRANKFURT -- Mercedes-Benz has released details and photographs of its new CLA Shooting Brake, the latest model to join the automaker's hot-selling compact lineup.
The station wagon joins the CLA coupe, GLA crossover as well as the A- and B-class models in a lineup that has helped give the brand a big boost in sales as it seeks to pass rivals BMW and Audi to become the world's top-selling premium brand.
Mercedes sold 375,435 compacts in the first 10 months, an increase of 24 percent over the previous year. Compacts accounted for nearly one-third of Mercedes' overall global sales of 1.33 million vehicles through October.
Like the coupe, the wagon features a long sporty hood and a distinctive single-bar front grille. A less pronounced downward slope of the roof line allows for 40mm (1.6 inches) more rear head room than in the four-door coupe. Mercedes say this allows easier access to the back seats. At 4630mm long, the CLA is 6mm longer than rival BMW’s 3-series wagon.
Mercedes say the CLA wagon's load capacity can be increased to 1,354 liters from 495 liters when the rear bench seat is folded down.
The CLA Shooting Brake will initially be available with a choice of two diesel and three gasoline engines as well as with all-wheel drive. All engine variants will feature a start/stop function as standard, the automaker said.
Standard safety features include: the automaker’s collision prevention assist plus system, which brakes the car automatically if sensors detect an imminent rear-end collision; and attention assist, which detects and warns drivers if they become drowsy.
Mercedes says it will begin European sales of the model in January, with the first cars reaching customers in March. The company has not yet released pricing details.