Already the fifth model in the compact class, the new CLA35 4MATIC Shooting Brake is the latest point of entry to the world of Mercedes-AMG. The five-door model combines the powerful proportions of a sporty coupé with the decisive extra functionality thanks to the extended roof, the large tailgate, the wide load compartment opening and the variable interior. The agile high-torque 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine delivers 225 kW (306 hp), which is variably distributed to the front and rear axle via the 7-speed dual-clutch transmission and the AMG Performance 4MATIC all-wheel drive. The sporty performance (acceleration 0-100 km/h in 4.9 seconds) is coupled with an increased amount of space for luggage or sports and outdoor equipment.
“The new CLA35 Shooting Brake, with its expressive design, the agile vehicle dynamics and the flexible load compartment is an attractive alternative for young customers who lead an active life with various leisure activities. With the Shooting Brake we are offering these individualists access to the exciting world of AMG Driving Performance, which is tailored to their specific requirements”, says Tobias Moers, Chairman of the Management Board of Mercedes-AMG GmbH.
The design with its elongated bonnet including power domes, broadly sculpted wheel arches, a slim waistline, compact greenhouse and width-accentuated tail end displays clear sports car genes. The AMG-specific radiator grille with its twin louvre and the AMG Line front apron with flics around the air inlet grilles as well as the front splitter and the inserts on the louvres on the outer air inlet grilles in silver chrome are characteristic elements of the “35” models and are thus also among the distinguishing features of the Shooting Brake.
From a side view, the aerodynamically optimised 18-inch light-alloy wheels in a 5-twin-spoke design (19-inch optionally available) and the dynamically sculpted side sill panels catch the eye. The outline of the frameless windows is identical to the outline of the Coupés itself up to the B-pillar. Behind it, the window line runs considerably higher, which makes entering easier for rear passengers and facilitates the larger load compartment capacity.
The rear view is dominated by the rear apron with a diffuser insert and four vertical fins, the AMG airflow break-away edge in the vehicle colour on the roof spoiler and the two round tailpipe trims on the left and right. The two-piece, narrow tail lamps and the number plate housed in the bumper make the tail end look especially wide.
Access to the world of Mercedes-AMG also means a large selection of individual equipment items on request, with which every customer can tailor their Shooting Brake personally. The options for the exterior include
Sporty interior with characteristic equipment features
Frameless doors open to an interior with a high-tech ambience where quality and elegance meet fully digital displays. Characteristic features of the “35” models include sports seats with upholstery in ARTICO man-made leather and DINAMICA microfibre in black with red double topstitching, complemented by the central trim element of the instrument panel in black DINAMICA with a red trim strip.
As an alternative, upholstery in ARTICO man-made leather in neva grey/black with mid-grey double topstitching and light-longitudinal-grain aluminium trim is available.
The AMG-specific centre console in high-gloss black with standard touchpad has additional buttons that control the 3-stage ESP®, manual transmission mode and the optional AMG RIDE CONTROL adaptive damping system. In combination with the optional leather package, it features a silver chrome console surround.
The characteristic, sporty AMG ambience is also underscored by the sports pedals in brushed stainless steel with rubber studs, floor mats in black with AMG lettering and insert in a nubuck-leather look, the roof liner in black fabric and the AMG door sills in brushed stainless steel at the front with “AMG” lettering.
MBUX infotainment system with AMG-specific displays
The combination of sporty design and sophisticated details is also featured in the MBUX infotainment system with its innovative operating and display concept. MBUX creates an even closer connection between the vehicle, driver and passengers. Emotionally appealing presentations underline the clear control structure and feature brilliant maximum-resolution 3D graphics. Visually, the two displays under one shared glass cover blend into a Widescreen Cockpit and as a central element consequently emphasise the horizontal orientation of the interior design.
The customer can choose between the three AMG display styles “Classic”, “Sport” and “Supersport” for the instrument cluster. The “Supersport” mode is particularly striking with a central, round rev counter and additional information presented in the form of bars to the left and right of the rev counter: with a three-dimensional perspective, they reach far into the background to an artificial horizon. Via the AMG menu the driver can call up various special displays:
- Gear display – with yellow “M” symbol in manual mode
- Warm-up menu – engine and transmission oil temperature
- Set-up menu – AMG DYNAMIC SELECT settings
- G-Meter – longitudinal and lateral acceleration forces
- Race-Timer – stopwatch, lap and sector times
- Engine data – output and torque, engine oil and transmission oil temperature
The touchscreen multimedia display also emphasises the dynamic character with individual AMG displays such as visualisation of the driving programs, AMG TRACK PACE and telemetry data.
Operation without touch: the interior assistant
With the new optional MBUX interior assistant, select infotainment functions can be operated touchlessly and the reading light can be switched on and off. The assistant differentiates between driver and passenger interaction and recognises certain hand positions and movements. The interaction area for the MBUX interior assistant is in front of the media display up to the centre console, including the touchpad between the driver and the front-seat passenger.
The MBUX interior assistant recognises movement toward the various operating elements of the infotainment system. The operator’s seat is enlarged on the media display if they move their hand toward the touchscreen. The most suitable operating elements are automatically pre-selected. In the Radio and Media menu, the MBUX interior assistant reduces the number of operating steps.
In the Navigation menu, the system fades in the navigation as soon as the hand moves to operate the touchscreen or touchpad, so that a symbol is selected directly. When displaying the camera image, as soon as the hand moves toward the touchscreen the MBUX interior assistant enables the four camera operating symbols from the 360-degree camera to be directly faded in. This means that the front, rear, right or left camera view can be directly selected.
And needless to say, the trailblazing voice control activated with the words “Hey Mercedes” is also on-board. Thanks to artificial intelligence, MBUX recognises and understands nearly all sentences from the fields of infotainment and vehicle operation, even if they are expressed indirectly.
New steering wheel generation with optional steering wheel buttons
The perfect connection between the driver and vehicle comes courtesy of the multifunction sports steering wheel in nappa leather with a steering wheel rim flattened at the bottom and a perforated grip area as well as red contrasting topstitching. The galvanised steering wheel gearshift paddles allow an even sportier driving style with manual gear shifting.
The active distance assistant DISTRONIC and the TEMPOMAT cruise control can be adjusted on the control panels on the left. The control panels on the right are used to activate the voice control and telephone, and to regulate the sound volume, music selection and other functions of the infotainment system.
The AMG Performance steering wheel in nappa leather or in nappa leather / DINAMICA microfibre or in DINAMICA microfibre is optionally available. It is available with the innovative AMG steering wheel buttons (standard with DINAMICA microfibre).
These consist of a round controller with an integrated display beneath the right-hand steering-wheel spoke, plus two vertically positioned colour display buttons with switches beneath the left-hand steering-wheel spoke. The AMG drive programs are actuated directly via the controller. With the two freely configurable display buttons and the additional switches, further AMG functions can be controlled within easy reach, directly on the steering wheel.
Individual optional equipment for the interior
With numerous options the interior of the CLA35 4MATIC Shooting Brake can be adapted to individual customer requirements. They include the following
- Leather package and AMG leather package with 2-tone upholstery, for example classic red / black, plus instrument panel in ARTICO man-made leather
- AMG Performance steering wheel in nappa leather
- AMG Performance steering wheel in nappa leather / DINAMICA microfibre
- AMG Performance steering wheel in DINAMICA microfibre incl. AMG steering wheel buttons
- Door sills in brushed stainless steel with “AMG” lettering, illuminated
- AMG Performance Seat Package
- AMG Performance Seat package Advanced+
- AMG Performance Seat package High-End
Reinforced body-in-white with increased torsional stiffness
Specific measures to strengthen the front section of the bodyshell form the basis for the precise turn-in ability and the toe and camber stability of the chassis components, even when driving at speed. An aluminium lightweight-construction plate screwed underneath the engine – the “shearing plate” – increases the torsional rigidity at the vehicle’s front end. Two additional diagonal braces at the front of the underbody also reduce torsion and increase the stiffness. As a result, the entire chassis system responds with maximum precision even at the limits of performance and gives clearly defined driver feedback.
New four-cylinder turbo engine with output of 225 kW (306 hp)
The 2.0-litre engine is based on the M 260 four-cylinder drivetrain in the new A-Class. The AMG-specific developments include the exhaust-gas turbocharging, the water charge air cooler and the independent air intake (clean air line). The sporty drive system boasts an immediate response to accelerator pedal commands, high tractive power (400 Nm max. torque from 3000 rpm), a supremely lively response and an emotional engine sound. The crankcase made of high-strength, lightweight die-cast aluminium reduces the vehicle weight where it matters most for driving dynamics.
The exhaust-gas turbocharging combines optimum responsiveness at low engine speeds with a strong power increase at higher speeds. The housing of the twin-scroll turbocharger is divided into two parallel ducts. Together with two separate exhaust ducts in the exhaust manifold, this makes it possible to channel the exhaust gases separately on the turbine wheel.
This results in a further advantage of twin-scroll technology, i.e. minimisation of the mutually adverse effects of the individual cylinders on the gas cycle. The exhaust gas back pressure is reduced and gas exchange and engine efficiency are improved.
Numerous engine measures increase efficiency
The high technological standards of the new four-cylinder engine are also underscored by numerous efficiency-enhancing measures. These include CAMTRONIC variable valve control, intelligent thermal management for engine and oil, high-precision piezo injectors and multi-spark ignition. In production, the patented CONICSHAPE® cylinder honing reduces internal engine friction and also increases efficiency. The petrol particulate filter is on board as standard, the emission classification is Euro 6d-Temp.
Agile gear ratios: AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7G dual-clutch transmission
The AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7G dual clutch transmission likewise contributes to the agile and dynamic character. The gear ratios have been configured so that the driver experiences very spontaneous acceleration in all speed ranges, combined with fast shifting and optimum connections when shifting up.
Anyone who prefers to change gear for themselves can select the manual transmission mode in every drive program. Via the short-term M mode this is done lightning-fast simply by operating the steering wheel gearshift paddles.
The standard RACE-START function allows maximum acceleration from stationary, a highly emotional experience. This also applies to the drive sound with partial ignition interruption when changing up a gear and the automatic double-declutching function when changing down.
AMG Performance 4MATIC variable all-wheel drive
Dynamism, agility and performance are three of the attributes that underpin the standard-fit all-wheel drive. The variable AMG Performance 4MATIC combines the best possible traction with lots of driving fun. The torque distribution is infinitely variable to suit the dynamic handling requirements. The spectrum ranges from front-wheel drive only to a 50:50 percent distribution to the front and rear axles.
A multi-disc clutch that is integrated in the rear axle transmission is responsible for the variable torque distribution between the front and rear axles. It is controlled electro-mechanically. The influencing factors for torque distribution are not only the driving speed, the lateral and longitudinal acceleration and the steering angle, but also the difference in rotational speed between the individual wheels, the gear selected and the accelerator position.
The main advantages of electro-mechanical control over an electro-hydraulic system relate to more refined driving dynamics – primarily due to the significantly faster response and speed-independent actuation of the discs over the entire adjustment range.
The all-wheel control characteristics depend on the ESP® mode selected: As long as ESP® is activated, the 4MATIC system stays in “Comfort” mode. As soon as the driver presses the “ESP® SPORT Handling” or “ESP® OFF” button, the 4MATIC system switches to “Sport” mode – for even more agile handling and even higher stability limits.
The 3-stage ESP® has individual control strategies in SPORT HANDLING MODE to enable higher drift angles for a sporty driving style before the system intervenes.
When entering a bend the Shooting Brake reacts with even greater agility through brake applications at the rear wheel on the inside of the bend – depending on the AMG DYNAMICS mode or drive program selected.
Five driving programs: vehicle characteristics with wide spread
The five AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive programs “Slippery”, “Comfort”, “Sport”, “Sport +” and “Individual” enable a wide range of vehicle characteristics from comfortable to dynamic. Numerous relevant parameters are modified:
- Powertrain: accelerator pedal characteristic, shift times and timing points, tone and sound functions in the manifestations Reduced, Moderate, Sport, Dynamic
- Transmission: automatic or manual
- AMG DYNAMICS: agility-increasing functions such as all-wheel control, steering characteristic and ESP® additional functions in the manifestations Basic or Advanced
- Chassis (with optional AMG RIDE CONTROL suspension): in Comfort, Sport, Sport+
The individual drive programs offer an individual driving experience, precisely tailored to different driving conditions and driver requirements.
- The new “Slippery” drive program is optimised for low-grip, icy road conditions, with reduced power and a flat torque curve. Smooth gear changes and earlier upshifting support the driving impression characterised by stability.
- The “Comfort” program stands for comfortable and fuel-efficient driving, for example thanks to very early upshifts. Suspension and steering are set up for an emphasis on comfort. In addition, the ECO start/stop function is active here.
- “Sport” and “Sport+” place the focus on agility and driving pleasure with sporty engine and transmission tuning. The sound of the turbocharged engine becomes more distinctive. “Sport+” is particularly emotional with double-declutching during downshifts and partial cylinder cut-off via a brief and precisely defined retardation of ignition and injection at full load.
- The “Individual” drive program enables the individual parameters to be selected and saved according to personal preferences. In addition, the gliding function is available in the “Reduced” and “Moderate” drive settings.
AMG DYNAMICS: more agility with high stability
As a new feature in the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive programs, the new CLA35 4MATIC Shooting Brake comes with AMG DYNAMICS. This integrated dynamic handling control system extends the stabilising functions of ESP® with agilising interventions according to the driver’s wishes. During dynamic cornering, imperceptible braking intervention on the rear inside wheel creates a defined yaw torque about the vertical axis for immediate and precise steering into the bend.
The different manifestations of AMG DYNAMICS in the “35” models are called “Basic” and “Advanced”. On the multimedia display, when a drive program is selected, the new AMG DYNAMICS symbol is displayed together with the corresponding additional information.
- “Basic” is assigned to the “Slippery” and “Comfort” drive programs. Here the Shooting Brake demonstrates exceptionally stable handling characteristics with high yaw damping.
- “Advanced” is activated in the programs “Sport” and “Sport+”. The Shooting Brake remains neutrally balanced. The lower yaw damping, lower steering angle requirement and enhanced agility support dynamic manoeuvres such as driving on winding country roads.
In the “Individual” drive program the driver can set the AMG DYNAMICS levels individually.
Chassis with specific components
The layout of the AMG chassis with specific spring/damper elements forms the basis for the solid straight-line stability and the highly dynamic cornering performance. The longitudinal and transverse dynamics are perfectly coordinated. All suspension components have been thoroughly revised in order to achieve a higher maximum lateral acceleration with easy vehicle control at the limits simultaneously.
A McPherson suspension strut construction is fitted on the front axle. Suspension is taken care of by one wishbone below the wheel centre, one spring strut and one tie rod respectively. The special axle geometry reduces the influence of the drive on the steering – for high comfort and agile handling. The new wishbone in aluminium reduces the unsprung masses enabling a more sensitive response from the springs. The AMG-specific front steering knuckle has a radially bolted brake calliper – a technology originating from motorsport. The front axle carrier is rigidly attached and thus additionally stiffens the front section.
The 4-link rear axle is connected rigidly with the body via a rear axle carrier and thus with a very high degree of torsional stiffness. There are three transverse control arms and one trailing arm plus specific bearings per rear wheel. This design ensures maximum driving stability and agility.
Adaptive damping system AMG RIDE CONTROL with three modes
The optional AMG RIDE CONTROL adaptive damping system enables the driver to choose between three different suspension control modes. The spectrum ranges from comfort-focused to sporty. The system operates fully automatically, adapting the damping forces for each wheel according to the driving situation and road conditions. This happens within milliseconds and is infinitely variable, with a wide spread of damping characteristics. The result is that it ride comfort and agility are enhanced in equal measure.
Robust high-performance brake system
The high-performance braking system ensures fade-resistant deceleration and short braking distances. At the front axle, 4-piston monoblock fixed callipers surround the 350-millimetre brake discs, at the rear axle, 1-piston sliding callipers surround the 330-millimetre brake discs. The discs are internally ventilated and perforated to better dissipate heat and prevent brake fading, even with extreme use. The silver-painted brake callipers have black AMG lettering.
Steering with special rack and variable ratio
The speed-sensitive, electro-mechanical sports power steering supports a sporty driving style with its direct response. It has a special rack with variable transmission ratio and two characteristic curves: depending on which drive program the driver has selected, it provides taut and sporty or more comfort-biased steering feedback. The rigid mounting in the integral carrier connects the steering even better with the body and thus increases steering precision.
AMG exhaust system with exhaust flap for sound modulation
As standard the exhaust system has an exhaust flap which is automatically controlled depending on the engine speed and load. Depending on the drive program selected it modulates the sound from harmoniously discreet (in the programs Slippery, Comfort and Sport) to emotively sporty (in Sport+).
Data logger for use on the racetrack: AMG TRACK PACE
AMG TRACK PACE is also available optionally. The virtual race engineer is part of the MBUX infotainment system and permanently records more than 80 vehicle-specific data (e.g. speed, acceleration) while driving on a racetrack. On top of this, lap and sector times are displayed, as well as the respective difference to a reference time. Because specific display elements are shown in green or red, the driver is able to see at a glance without reading numbers whether they are currently faster or slower than the best time.
After putting in some fast laps, the driver can use the data to analyse and, if necessary, improve their driving skills. In addition, acceleration and deceleration values (e.g. 0-100 km/h, ¼ mile, 100-0 km/h) can be measured and saved. Thanks to a newly developed algorithm which determines the vehicle position as precisely as possible, AMG TRACK PACE even detects when the circuit has been left or it has been shortened. This is done using GPS data as well as the sensors available in the vehicle (acceleration, gyroscope, steering angle, wheel speeds).
The data are displayed on the multimedia display, in the instrument cluster and on the optional head-up display. Well-known racetracks like, for example, the Nürburgring or Spa Francorchamps, are already stored. Furthermore, it is also possible to record your own circuits. The map display can be switched from 2D to 3D and updated online.
The MBUX Augmented Reality function also allows the ideal line of a stored racetrack to be displayed on the multimedia display or optional head-up display, allowing the driver to improve lap times with a virtual instructor on board.