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Old 12th July 2015, 12:08   #1
VSD
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Default My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

Before i start with the review, some final goodbye shots of my bimmer 525d.
This car has been with me for 3 years and it has been a brilliant ride from Day1. I had covered 57000kms and could have easily covered 50k more without hassle. I decided to jump into sports car category which is why I had to let it go.

My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_6370.jpg
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_6371.jpg


I'm already very late in writing this review as it's already been close to 4 months since my purchase. But, the positive thing about this is that i can give you proper insight about how it is to live with this car and drive it on daily basis.

The car has already covered 6000 kms and it's been mostly city running with one highway trip to Ajmer. I'll start my review with some info about the options considered and booking process.

Options considered:
  1. Porsche Cayman S (1.33cr)
    • Too Expensive, specially when the dealer just ticks off most options which may not be of my use. To order one with my own specs would mean waiting for 6 months. All i wanted in my car was PDK, Sport PLUS and sport exhaust, none of those rip off leather equipment.
  2. Used 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera Manual with aerokit (1.47)
    • Nothing could beat this Porsche with manual gearbox, aerokit and just adequate accessories to make it so much fun to drive. Only drawback was that this very car was testdrive vehicle and was definitely abused when i took an extended drive of the car.
  3. Used 2011 Audi RS5 (58 L)
    • Could only manage to find one car in all of India for sale at that moment. Two issues with the car were that it was WB registered and had already changed hands 4 times.
  4. Used 2009 Audi R8 V8 (68L)
    • The car was too old, had covered 40k kms and wasn't recommended by a lot of known people.
  5. Used 2014 E63 AMG (1.08cr)
    • I'd have bought this car bought this car, but it just felt too big to be driven daily and in the city. It had many things i'd have liked in my car, V8, good comfort even being a sports car and very good price for the vehicle. But didn't fit my criteria of a daily drive peppy little sports car.
  6. BMW M3/M4
    • BMW have lost their mind specially when pricing some of their cars. Seriously 1.3crores for an M3/M4. I'm usually brand loyal and I'd have loved to get another bimmer home, but this is just way too much money for this car. Porsche has always been too high with their pricing but didn't expect this from BMW.

Booked:

Booked the CLA45 at T&T motors AMG Lounge, Mathura Road, Delhi. Himanshu Mehra, Head of AMG sales had good knowledge about the cars and gave me all the details about every option i could purchase from AMG Lounge. Finally decision was made after two long test drives and getting very confused with so many choices available in the market. My car was the only CLA45 available for the month of March, 2015. The new lot had to arrive in mid-May which had two CLA45 in red and white and one GLA45 AMG in grey colour. I don't think i could've waited that long.

The car in the showroom, the day we booked it.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_6402.jpg

First question people ask me when they get to know about my car is, Why pay so much for this little car when there is one available for half the amount and looks the same? Well, my answer to them is simple.
It's not just any small car, it's an AMG.

But sadly, no one really got it. I had show them videos and explain difference between AMG models and non-AMG. Many people in this country aren't familiar with this name and they straight away compare them to the regular versions of the same car available for half the price. I knew that within a week, my car would be home and all questions will be answered by themselves.

After such waiting for close to a MILLION seconds (every second of wait counts when you wait for your car to arrive), my rocket was home.

I present to you, My Pocket Rocket
Mercedes Benz W117 CLA45 AMG 4matic.
Mountain grey color
AMG sports package
Multimedia Package
Drivers aid Package
AMG sports exhaust
AMG sports seats & sports steering with alcantara.
All the options you could possibly have in this car

LIKES
Great looking car, coupe like and frameless doors.
360 HP, one of the most powerful 2litre engines ever made.
Fully loaded car bought here by the dealer. (probably to justify the high price)
Value for money compared to other over priced cars available here.
3 years standard on all AMG's, for peace of mind.
Soft suspension for a sports car, which is actually a good thing when used on our kind of roads.
Has 4 seats as compared to other cars in the segments with strict two seats or 2+2 seats configuration.

DISLIKES
COMAND system is pretty slow and feels old.
Gearbox could have been better.
Soft suspension (not so good for high speed cornering)
It's a front wheeler, 4 matic hardly kicks in for stability in extreme cases.



Delivery picture taken by T&T guys, it's not very clear as it was already around 9pm and pretty dark outside.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9220.jpg
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_6482.jpg


Day 1 pics
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_6483.jpg
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_6485.jpg
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_6484.jpg

Got this at the time of delivery, It's very very heavy than it may seem in the picture. It sports the Affalterbach logo which is the hometown for AMG. The same is placed on the key as well which differs from the other non-AMG variants.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_6487.jpg
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_7261.jpg

As some of you may have spotted something parked right next to my car in the delivery image above. A very special car waiting to be delivered.
Cheers to the guy who specially ordered the G-wagon in this brilliant green colour.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_6463.jpg

Last edited by VSD : 9th August 2015 at 01:56.
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Old 7th August 2015, 04:06   #2
VSD
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Default re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

The car cost me close to Rs.77lacs on road Faridabad, excluding star ease package worth 2.55lacs for 3 years/60k kms. I think it's good price when compared to other cars available in this segment today.
Also, this had to be my daily driver, even though my daily run is not more than 2 kms in total from home to office and back. So no other car seemed be as practical as this (in my opinion), it seats 4 easily, small in size for daily use in the city and 360horses from that engine meant i could get some kick out of it on good roads/highways as and when required.

I wasn't kidding when i said my daily drive is just 1km. Pic taken on my way back from work.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9181.jpg


Some exterior pictures of the car.
Love the ribbed hood.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_8622.jpg

Boot with built in lip spoiler.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_8621.jpg

Frame less doors look great.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_8239.jpg

That back end !!
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_8472.jpg

Personally, these lights look awesome at night. You can spot them on all the new Mercedes cars, but these look the best of them all.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9176.jpg

The vent in the rear bumper is actually just for show, it's not functional. (i found this out recently)
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9333.jpg

I don't know what this is, it's on the rear wheel arch. Does it have any aerodynamic effect, or it has some other function?
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9334.jpg

18 x 8j AMG wheels in graphite finish with 235/40 continental contisportcontact tyres. They do a good job, though I'd prefer Michelins. (sorry about the dirty tyres, will post better ones later)
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9335.jpg


Interior:

The build quality is what you'd expect from any Mercedes labeled product, all things fit well in place and have very nice feel to them. Although at some places you can make out the cost cutting done for the baby AMG like the dash trim has a very plastic feel to it when you touch it or knock on it, somehow feels that it may start rattling after spending time on our horrid roads.

The interior is done completely in red & black including the sports Recaro bucket seats, red seat belts & red accents on the ac vents look fantastic with the overall interior. They give you that sporty feel as soon as you get in. Though it took me a while to get used to the red seatbelts, now I just forget they're even there.

Full interior in red & black.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9324.jpg
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9331.jpg

Front Recaros are great with adjustable sides and thigh bolstering. I keep them fully stretched out as they get too stiff for city drive.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9325.jpg

Sports steering with Alcantara inserts.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9329.jpg

Illuminated AMG door sills.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9185.jpg


The Multimedia package includes a bigger screen, with navigation as standard. The screen size good but it sticks out on the dash and it feel 'in your face' design to me. The COMAND system is actually really complicated and slow as compared to i-drive from bmw and the MMI from audi. This system is something that got me thinking twice about picking up this car in the beginning. After using the car for few months now, i've got used to the system but still something or the other pisses you off. Like, the system just completely shuts off if i use a 16gb usb and it keeps turning on and off until you remove the drive out of the port while the same usb works in every other vehicle. Steering controls are slow to navigate from one place to another like getting from driving details to maybe radio or media interface on the MID. ALL in ALL it's just crap, Mercedes needs to work in this section and i feel in today's time having brilliant multimedia system is necessary. MERCEDES, please fix this.

One good thing about the system is the rear view camera and it's the best i've seen till date. Super clarity even in pitch dark conditions. It has two viewing modes too.

Normal rear view
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9179.jpg

Extended view, where you can see both ends of the bumper which you can say is the blind spot for rear view cameras.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9180.jpg

Last edited by VSD : 9th August 2015 at 01:50.
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Old 9th August 2015, 02:08   #3
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Default re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

DRIVE:

I've covered just about 6k kms till now, mostly in the city and personally speaking, the car has fared better than i thought. No issues in the traffic or feeling scared about bad roads etc. I have only once clipped the speed bump in Gurgaon which was just too huge and no space to go sideways either. I'm mostly driving in sports mode as they car gets too quiet in comfort mode. Sport mode has a deep growl on acceleration over 2k rpm and pops & crackles over 3k rpm. I love the sound so much that i just can't drive in comfort mode at all. I'm sure future exhaust mods will just make it better, can't wait to complete 15k/first service to go for exhaust mods.
One issue in the city for me is the fuel tank capacity, mere 50litres. It only covers 250kms on full tank, whereas I've been used to 700kms from my bimmer. I'm now getting used to fill every time I go to Delhi because there's just one fuel pump in Faridabad that carries speed petrol, let alone 97octane.
F.E in city is 5kmpl max.

I've done two long drive highway trips till now, one to Jaipur and another to Ajmer. Route from Faridabad-Jaipur isn't that great at all though Jaipur-Ajmer is just awesome stretch of road. You can just drive like you're in another country altogether. Six lanes and mostly empty with trucks sticking to left most lane. leaving the other two lanes for us car people to use.
F.E on highway is about 10-11kmpl.

Few pictures from my trip to Jaipur
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_7113.jpg

Late night drive to Amer fort with my rocket and it's garage companion 'Not so AUDI-NARY Q5'.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_7619.jpg
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_7592.jpg

Lastly I'd like to thank Steffen Bahr for personally handcrafting this brilliant engine for me.
My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG-img_9211.jpg


I have tried to cover everything in this review. I hope you guys like it, please let me know if you guys want to know anything else about the car or how the drive is (or anything that I may have missed). I'll be doing some mods in the near future, both cosmetic and performance mods. Will keep you posted.

Cheers !!
VSD

Last edited by VSD : 9th August 2015 at 02:25.
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Old 11th August 2015, 15:13   #4
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Default Re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Initial Ownership Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 11th August 2015, 15:37   #5
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Default Re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

Whoa!!. Ah My God!! Let me be the first to congratulate you. Great car. Great color. Drive safe.
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Old 11th August 2015, 15:52   #6
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Default Re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

@VSD - Congratulations on the purchase of this beauty. Its an absolute stunner like you said and even moreso in this shade.

You'd also mentioned bout the E63 AMG, that would've been a hoot to drive too. But is the difference in sizes really all that much. Anyway I am sure you're a better judge.

Congratulations again, have fun and be safe.
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Old 11th August 2015, 15:58   #7
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Default Re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

Thanks for sharing the ownership experience of your pocket rocket. and congratulations.

No complaints on delaying it, Better late than never

Your car look superb in the grey color and the tail light in night looks sexy .

Have fun, Drive safe

Asish.
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Old 11th August 2015, 16:12   #8
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Default Re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

Awesome Thread. Many Many congratulations, Sir! This is one beast of a car you own

P.S - The first pic from your jaipur trip looks like a pic from Need For Speed :O
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Old 11th August 2015, 16:31   #9
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Default Re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

Awesome. Many congratulations for the new car. Drive safe.
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Old 11th August 2015, 16:35   #10
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Default Re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

Congratulations to VSD on the AMG. The interiors look absolutely stunning.

Now waiting for regular updates on the car as to how practical is it to live with.
Cheers!
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Old 11th August 2015, 16:45   #11
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Default Re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

Excellent choice, congrats. 360bhp from a 2L engine . I am sure it must be a hoot to drive. A remap can make it even more powerful.

Quote:
Originally Posted by VSD View Post
I don't know what this is, it's on the rear wheel arch. Does it have any aerodynamic effect, or it has some other function?
Attachment 1401398
Some european contries have rules that certain percentage of the tyre should be covered. Thats why these flaps, even eco sport has these.
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Old 11th August 2015, 17:16   #12
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Default Re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

Dear VSD, now that I have got over my pangs of envy let me congratulate you on your new set of wheels. You wrote a informative thread on your BMW 5 over its life. Request you to keep updating this thread too. I am particularly interested in the service standards of T&T and after sales service attitudes of Mercedes. Best wishes - Narayan
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Old 11th August 2015, 17:46   #13
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Default Re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

Wow....awesome ride.
And pretty great value too if you look at it.
I mean cars like 530d are goin on for 70 lakhs OTR now. For seven lakhs more you got a 360 bhp hand built mini monster. That's a sweet deal.
If anybody's reading this thread and has got 80 lakh to splurge on a car, they should buy this car now ASAP, before Mercedes jack up the price.
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Old 11th August 2015, 17:48   #14
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Default Re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

Congratulations on the baby AMG. I did get a chance to drive it in Mumbai right after the launch. We were 4 adults in the car but it didnt affect the power delivery much, she still pulled well (apart from very low rpm throttle response).

What i also quite liked was that because of the compact size, finding space in traffic via steering and throttle is good fun.

However, there is a difference in the kind of fun in driving the CLA compared to other cars (63's) in the AMG family.

Have fun.
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Old 11th August 2015, 20:20   #15
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Default Re: My Pocket Rocket - Mercedes CLA45 AMG

Congratulations VSD!

Boy what an awesome buy. I have to say for a self drive this one makes way more sense than the 530d / A63.0 TDI / E350. The normal car looks brilliant this one looks smashing inside out. Can only imagine how much fun the 2 km daily commute would be.

Have only one question, do you absolutely need 97 RON fuel or does she work well even on normal petrol? If not then that would seriously limit the usability of this beauty.

Given the ridiculous prices of certain germans the CLA and GLA in AMG guise seem like a decent bargain for someone in the market for a stylish self drive vehicle!

Wish you many happy and safe miles with this one!
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