Some months ago, we reported about Mercedes intentions to enlarge the compact model range with a sport coupe based on A-Class. Now, the rumours come again. A competitor for the Audi TT based on the Mercedes MFA platform seems to be a very logical step.
The new Mercedes compact family based on the MFA platform is very successful. Last month, the family was completed with the last and fifth member – the CLA Shooting Brake. It seems this is all for the first generation of models based on the new front wheel drive platform.
But for the future, there are a lot of possibilities. The German magazine Auto Bild reports that Mercedes is considering four other new versions: a sporty coupe, a sporty Shooting Brake, a classic limousine different from the CLA four door coupe version, and a compact roadster.
Some months ago, Auto Bild reported that Mercedes is still thinking about where to position a coupe based on A-Class: a cheap entry level three door coupe under the A-Class or a sporty coupe with an original body. And now it seems that Mercedes has already decided for the second version. And the rumour came from this very decision: Mercedes is planning a competitor for the Audi TT.
Until now, we know that the Mercedes SLK is the Audi TT competitor. But things are changing and here are the explanations and the reasons.
The market of the roadsters is going down everywhere in the world. The Mercedes SLK is based on the old C-Class platform and is very expensive. Because the roadster market is shrinking, Mercedes is looking for a new strategy.
To save costs, the future generations of the SLK and the SL will share the same platform, will be more sporty and will be positioned upmarket. Actually, the SLK is based on the old C-Class and SL on the current E-Class. Because of this technical connections with the limousines, both the SLK and the SL are not sporty enough. Making a new platform for roadsters with lower engine positioning, a specific weight distribution and with a lower weight due to use of light materials, the future generations of the SLK and of the SL will be more sporty like the Silver Arrows back in the ’60s.
In the same time, a higher positioning of the SLK create space for another sporty model under the SLK. This is a perfect place for a sporty coupe based on A-Class. With front wheel drive and optionally coming with four wheel drive, this sporty coupe would have the exact same layout like the Audi TT. In fact, the Audi TT is based on the MQB platform, also used for the VW Golf.
Not only does Mercedes have the right platform, but also the right engines. The 2 liter turbo with 211 HP would be ideal for the regular version, nwhile the AMG 2 liter turbo 360 HP would be more powerful than any engine of the Audi TT. And in between, an AMG Sport Line with 280-300 HP could compete with great chances against the Audi TT S.
Based on the coupe, the next logical step is a roadster. According to a Mercedes manager quoted by Auto Bild, the future roadster is not a competitor for the Audi A3 Cabrio or BMW 2 Series Cabrio but much closer to the Audi TT Roadster and the future BMW Z4.
So, Mercedes is looking to play more sport and they have the right tools to do it.
Because the second A-Class generation will be launched in 2018, expect the A-Class coupe as a rival for the Audi TT in 2019.
You could find here other details about how the compact Mercedes family will be developed in the future.