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Mercedes GLA to debut in China

Yet another SUV concept is set to make its first official appearance at the Shanghai Motor Show.

Hot on the heels of similar announcements from BMW, Citroen, MG and Nissan, Mercedes has confirmed that it will be taking the wraps off its latest premium SUV concept, the GLA, at Auto Shanghai, the doors to which officially open on April 21.

Conceived to help owners “escape the everyday” at 4.38 meters long and 1.97 meters wide, the GLA is small enough to negotiate busy city centers but thanks to permanent four-wheel drive should make for a willing leisure-time companion too.

Under the hood is a four-cylinder, 2-liter turbocharged petrol enginecapable of pumping out 211bhp via a seven-speed double-clutch automatic transmission. The inside of the cabin benefits from prodigious use of leather and aluminium, the perfect blend of comfort and practicality — after all, this is meant to be a vehicle equally at home on a motorway and a muddy field.

Other interesting interior touches include light-emitting air vents that shine blue when the air conditioning is set below 22°C and start to glow a brighter red as the heat is turned up. The car also boasts externally mounted 3D/HD cameras that give the driver a clear, birds-eye view of everything surrounding the car, but that can also be removed and mounted on a helmet or mountain bike so that families can record their adventures. The cameras can also be operated to make films or take still photos while the car is in motion and, thanks to an integrated, front-mounted lens, can project those images (or any others from the internet, a smartphone or hard drive) directly on to a wall or any other vertical surface, essentially turning the car into a mobile drive-in cinema.

“The Concept GLA marks a new approach for us in the compact SUV segment — this is a sporty and more coupé-like evolution of this category of vehicle,” commented Dr Joachim Schmidt, Executive Vice President Mercedes-Benz Cars, Sales and Marketing.

© 2013 Relaxnews
Image Courtesy of Mercedes-Benz