Mercedes-Benz A-Class Review 2022

Mercedes-Benz A-Class At A Glance

4/5
Honest John Overall Rating
The latest A-Class is Mercedes at its best. It’s sophisticated and civilised on the road, it’s packed with technology, and the interior has proper wow-factor.

+Innovative infotainment system that looks great, really posh-feeling interior, comfortable and secure to drive.

-Merely so-so on practicality, Smartphone integration should be standard across the board, A200 petrol engine not refined enough.

New prices start from £33,980
Insurance Groups are between 18–35
On average it achieves 84% of the official MPG figure

The previous Mercedes A-Class was successful despite its abilities rather than because of them, but the latest 2018 version stands with the very best cars in the premium hatchback class. The competition - in the form of the Audi A3, BMW 1 Series and Volkswagen Golf - is extremely good in a vast number of ways, but so is the A-Class. Well worthy of your consideration.

The A-Class has come a long way since the early days. First introduced in 1997 as some weird scaled-down MPV-type contraption that’d fall over at the merest sight of an elk, it would gradually morph over the years into a more conventional prestige hatchback that would form the entry-point into Mercedes-Benz ownership, and delight image-conscious buyers on a budget along the way.

For all their popularity, though, previous versions of the A-Class have been, well, not all that good. Not bad, you understand, just not as good as the excellent cars with which they were required to compete, those being the Audi A3 and BMW 1 Series. These rivals were better to drive, more practical and higher in quality than the A-Class, and of course, no less desirable.

This fourth-generation model, though, is a different matter entirely. While the Audi and BMW are better and more desirable than ever, the baby Benz has really caught up.

Finally, it delivers the comfortable, sophisticated driving experience that you expect from a Mercedes, while it also has its rivals matched on space and versatility. Where quality is concerned, it still doesn’t have quite the bullet-proof solidity of assembly that its rivals do, but if anything, it has them beaten for poshness and theatre.

Much of that is thanks to simply stunning materials, and the rest is down to the high-tech infotainment system that dominates the cabin, with its twin screens, sharp graphics and feature-rich functionality.

The list of standard equipment is a little bit hit-and-miss (not all versions have Apple Carplay/Android Auto, for example), but most of what you need is provided, plus more besides. Safety kit is also well catered for, and with a range of punchy and efficient engines, running costs will be on a par with those of the key rivals, as will purchase prices.

Is it the best car in the class? Well, no, we don’t think so: we think that honour falls to the BMW 1 Series once all things are considered. However, the margins are tight, and different cars suit different people. If you’re after a comfortable car that dazzles with its infotainment kit and its luxurious interior, then the A-Class might well be pick-of-the-class for you.

Looking for a second opinon? Why not read heycar's Mercedes-Benz A-Class review.

Ask Honest John

Mercedes-Benz A-Class - should I buy the A180 or A200?
"I currently own a Mercedes-Benz A-Class, 2017, A200 AMG Line (Premium) with Night Pack. I have been very happy with this car and have clocked nearly 20,000 miles in the year I have owned it. I am looking to replace this as I don't want the mileage to exceed average and currently it is just below. I want another A-Class and all prices are fairly high and I have a budget around £20,000 and would prefer lower miles as I clock them up. I want a high spec, similar to the one I have. There appear to be more A180s on the market than A200s. What should I expect for my budget and which is better, the A200 or A180? "
From memory, there's not a huge difference between the performance of the A180 and A200, although it's worth having a go in each to draw your own conclusions. I'd be more inclined to focus on getting the upgraded infotainment and automatic gearbox that make the A-Class feel and drive like a mini luxury car. Your budget will get you a A180 auto AMG Line with less than 40,000 miles on the clock. Here's our A-Class review: https://www.honestjohn.co.uk/mercedes-benz/a-class/
Answered by Russell Campbell
Should I consider the Mercedes-Benz A-Class Sport?
"I'm looking at the Mercedes-Benz A-Class A180D Sport. However, I'm unsure whether running costs will be high. I've never driven a diesel before. I'm on the motorway minimum three times a week but only for 5-10 mins as it's part of my journey to work. So I'm concerned it might be better to consider a petrol engine. The aim is to keep the car for a while and utilise for family holidays too. "
If you are worried about high running costs then I'm not sure a used A-Class diesel would be the best choice. When it comes to maintenance, repairs and general servicing, a car will generally reflect its price when new. In this case, it'll be for a car that cost £20,000 - £30,000. And not one that's £5,000 or £6,000. Older diesels also tend to be more expensive to run because they have things like a DPF, EGR and other pricey parts that tend to wear out or become clogged up. If you travel less than 15 miles to work (per trip) then I do not think a diesel car will be suitable for your needs, either.
Answered by Dan Powell
Which car should I buy for motorway commuting?
"I am looking for a car for motorway commuting and I am spiralling down an endless rabbit hole of options! I drive around 500 miles a week - a mix of 80% double carriage/motorway and 20% single carriage/broads/town. Comfort and economy are important to me so ideally I'm thinking of a biggish car (though I'm not keen on SUVs). I do quite like my options too (i.e. adaptive cruise control, digital dashboard). My budget is around £30k and I'm considering the following: Mercedes-Benz C-Class or E-Class, BMW 3 Series or 5 Series, Skoda Octavia or Superb, Jaguar XE or XF, or Volkswagen Arteon. What do you recommend? "
The Skoda Superb estate scores well for user satisfaction and your budget will get you a post-facelift example with all the toys you mention. For ultimate comfort, the Mercedes C-Class is a good shout and it's just been replaced so there may be deals to be done on slightly older cars. The E-Class is even more comfortable and many of them will have been specified with air suspension that takes them to another level compared to the rivals you mention. The Jaguars offer a great balance between comfort and handling, particularly the XF, but they're feeling a little dated now. The BMW prioritises comfort at the slight expense of comfort, but both the 3 and 5 Series are still great cars to do lots of miles in.
Answered by Russell Campbell
Falsified service history on my Mercedes A-Class
"I bought a Mercedes A-Class in February 2020 and the car was one year old. I was told it was fully serviced before picking it up but it turns out it wasn't. This was identified following a recall appointment for something to do with the air conditioning. After a lot of to-ing and fro-ing the garage admitted the car hadn't been serviced as I'd been told it had. The garage eventually did do the service, along with replacing a bald tyre and worn front and back wiper blades (which they let me drive out the showroom with at time of purchase). The plates beneath the car were also identified as broken BUT they did not fix this. This service was completed in January 2021, but I've now discovered that my service history shows one from November 2019 that didn't actually take place. Is there anything I can do? "
I would say you should reject the car because it was mis-sold, but I doubt that's a possibility now you have had the work carried out retrospectively. However, it is worth writing a letter to the service manager explaining all of the above and that it has left you with little to no faith in the dealer – could provide useful leverage to get the underside cladding fixed for free. In terms of the service discrepancy, a Mercedes dealer should be able to correct it. All your rights are listed, here: https://www.honestjohn.co.uk/how-to-reject-a-car-your-consumer-rights/
Answered by Russell Campbell
More Questions

What does a Mercedes-Benz A-Class cost?