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Mercedes-Benz A-Class Sedan, Three-Door, GLB Seven-Seat SUV On The Way Photo:

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Kez Casey | Apr, 11 2016 | 1 Comment

The current Mercedes-Benz A-Class range’s move from innovative sandwich-floor construction to a more conventional front-wheel-drive layout allowed a proliferation of models, like the four-door CLA, to follow.

In the next generation, Mercedes is reportedly getting set to push even further, shuffling the line-up and adding even more variants (according to information from German publication, Autobild).

Starting with a new version of Daimler’s MFA front drive architecture, the next-gen A-Class will yet again provide the underpinnings for the B-Class, and CLA four-door coupe.

2012 three-door A-Class Concept
2012 three-door A-Class Concept

The A-class itself will reportedly be redrawn to allow for for more space in the rear of the cabin, focusing on criticisms that the current generation isn’t as practical as some competitors.

The five-door CLA Shooting Brake will be retired, but in its place a three-door shooting brake model will arrive, designed to rival the Audi TT, but closer in form to the Volkswagen Scirocco.

The CLA sedan will return with the next generation, but will share showroom space with a new A-Class sedan - a vital addition in the Chinese and North American markets. The CLA will retain it’s sleeker coupe-inspired styling, while the A-Class sean will offer a taller roofline, and framed window glass, amongst other differences.

Not this time - a rendering of how the current A-Class sedan could've looked
Not this time - a rendering of how the current A-Class sedan could've looked

On the SUV side of things the GLA will be joined by a stretched GLB, offering a longer wheelbase with enough space to fit three rows of seats for a new compact seven-seat option - something the larger GLC and GLE are both missing.

All models will benefit from Mercedes-Benz’ renewed focus on interior quality, borrowing design cues and materials from the fresher C-Class and E-Class ranges.

Infotainment will also take a step up, with a new electronic architecture set to underpin the driver interface, bringing with it features like a heads-up display, vehicle-to-vehicle communications, and a greater range of connectivity options.

Room to move - unlike the current GLA, the GLB will seat seven
Room to move - unlike the current GLA, the GLB will seat seven

Hybrid engines are also on the agenda for the next generation MFA cars. A compact electric motor, fitted between the engine and transmission and capable of offering up to 100 kilometres of electric range in urban driving, is rumoured to be in development.

Similarly, AMG variants including the next A45 and CLA45 may turn to hybridisation to provide a performance boost on top of raised outputs from AMG’s highly-strung turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine.

MORE: Mercedes-Benz News and Reviews

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