by Adrian-Liviu Dorofte

SPY: The 2014 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class (X 156) meets snowy roads in Scandinavia

Winter is quickly spreading across Europe, so it's perfect time for cold weather testing in Northern Scandinavia. Mercedes-Benz is gradually moving its fleet of future models for some development in Sweden. The first model spotted by spy photographers is the upcoming GLA-Class (X 156), slated to appear towards the end of 2013.

The new GLA will be the fourth member of Mercedes-Benz's New Compact Car Generation (NCCG), after the B-Class, A-Class and CLA-Class. It will be assembled at the Rastatt facility, a well-known excellence center for the production of compact-sized models under the Three-Pointed Star.

The new premium compact SUV builds on the heritage of the G-Class, given its official title, and on the dynamic appearance of the new A-Class. Situated right below the GLK, the X 156 displays a modern and progressive exterior styling complete with some beefy rear shoulders, a prominent front fascia with a larger grille and a higher ground clearance to give it the desired all-terrain vehicles look.

The GLA will be offered in both 2WD and 4WD specification, at choice. The modular MFA platform will form a standard equipment for most of the lineup, while the 4MATIC will be available as an option for the high-end petrol and diesel variants. Specially for its new compact class cars, Mercedes-Benz has developed a new version of its versatile 4x4 traction system to suit the character of such models. Most of the time, it acts like a front-biased platform, with some torque also directed towards the rear axle via the 7G-DCT, whom the system works in conjuction with. At need, the system converts to a real 4x4 configuration and can transfer the entire torque to one wheel, to the front axle or to the rear one, given the most adequate grip.

The GLA portfolio will comprise up to seven different versions, four trim lines (Urban, Style, AMG Sport and the special GLA 250 SPORT variant) and unlimited customization possibilities:

- GLA 180 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY: 109 hp
- GLA 200 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY: 136 hp
- GLA 220 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY: 170 hp
- GLA 180 BlueEFFICIENCY: 122 hp
- GLA 200 BlueEFFICIENCY: 156 hp
- GLA 250 BlueEFFICIENCY: 211 hp
- GLA 45 AMG 4MATIC: 354 hp

Related articles:

- Mercedes-Benz 4MATIC: All-wheel drive for all – in every class

- SPY: First encounter with the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GLA 45 AMG (X 156)

Image Credits: GermanCarForum

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