New Mercedes-Benz CLA Fails Moose Test, Eats Cones

Regular cars aren't supposed to be super-dynamic, just fast enough to overtake and safe for the drivers and their families. However, the Mercedes-Benz  CLA-Class is letting us down with the results of its latest moose test.
New Mercedes CLA Fails Moose Test, Eats Cones 2 photos
Photo: YouTube screenshot/km77
New Mercedes CLA Fails Moose Test, Eats Cones
The CLA may be built on a compact car platform, but it's supposed to be the sportiest of the bunch. It's got wider tracks and better standard suspension compared to the A-Class sedan. These things alone should have made it good in the moose test, but we think Mercedes-Benz never took this type of scenario into consideration when developing the new four-door coupe.

Spanish magazine KM77 always uses the same scenario that can unmask some handling problems. They set up three rows of cones to simulate two lanes. The car is supposed to quickly jump a lane as if avoiding an obstacle and return as quickly as possible. This simulates the very real event of an obstacle in the middle of the road, and vehicles are expected to perform the task at 77 kph or 47.8 mph or better.

However, the CLA basically loses control at that speed. Only by lowering the entry speed to 66 kph or 41 miles were they able to safely and accurately stick to the fake lanes. We think there hasn't been such a bad result since the Dacia Sandero or something cheap like that. Heck, most tall crossovers are safer.

Spec isn't very relevant in this case. The tested coupe is a CLA 200 model that is available in Europe. This features a 1.3-liter turbo supposedly making 161 horsepower. American models all use 2.0-liter turbo engines, and because there would thus be even more weight over the front axle the handling could be even worse.

The problem is probably not with the setup of the suspension or the brakes. Nearly all FWD cars are supposed to "plow" like that. However, the test drivers reported only minimal intervention from the electronic aids that should have engaged immediately, tapping the brakes so that the CLA could corner at a safer speed.

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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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