Costs, insurance groups, MPG and CO2
The majority of A Class Saloon buyers won’t be paying cash; they’ll be signing up to a PCP finance deal. If you’re planning to do that, an A Class Saloon will generally cost you more per month than its premium-badged rivals, including the Audi A3 Saloon, although prices can vary from month to month depending on manufacturer and dealer incentives.
If you’re a company car driver, the A180d is your best bet, thanks to its official CO2 emissions of just 103g/km. There’s good news for private buyers, too: the fact that the A Class Saloon is predicted to hang on to more of its value than rivals over three years will help mitigate the fact that it costs slightly more to buy. Reasonable discounts are also available on the brochure prices; click here to find out how much you could save.
Equipment, options and extras
Unlike with the hatchback, there’s no entry-level SE trim on the A Class Saloon, so you jump straight to Sport trim. This gets you 17in wheels, powerful LED headlights, dual-zone climate control and cruise control.
Range-topping AMG Line is also tempting but pushes the price into the territory of larger executive cars, such as the BMW 3 Series. For that reason, we’d stick with Sport trim and add the Executive Package, which gets you an enlarged infotainment screen, front and rear parking sensors as well as heated front seats. If you’re feeling flush, the pricier Premium Package adds all of that and more, including the larger digital instrument display that we mentioned earlier, keyless entry, an upgraded stereo and cool-looking ambient lighting.
In the 2019 What Car? Reliability Survey, the A Class didn’t score at all well, finishing towards the bottom of the family car class. However, we're yet to receive data for the saloon as it's too new. It's worth pointing out that the A3 Saloon finished towards the top of the class, with the A4 Saloon and Superb landing mid-table.
As a brand, Mercedes ranked a disappointing 24th out of 31 manufacturers. BMW and Audi finished only slightly higher, though, in 21st and 20th respectively. Skoda managed 9th overall, but Lexus are not only the most reliable premium brand, but number one overall.
Safety and security
Euro NCAP gave the A Class a five-star (out of five) safety rating, with higher scores across the board than the A3 managed. That’s because even the most basic versions come with automatic emergency braking, lane-keeping assistance, seven airbags, a system that monitors the driver’s alertness and a pop-up bonnet to help cushion a pedestrian in the event of an impact.
Meanwhile, traffic sign recognition (a system that uses a camera to recognise speed limit signs and displays them on the dashboard) and blindspot monitoring are on the options list.
For all the latest reviews, advice and new car deals, sign up to the What Car? newsletter here