2020 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class

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$34,250 - 36,250 MSRP

2020 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class Review

The 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLA is athletic and offers a user-friendly infotainment system, but it’s slow to accelerate from a stop, and its cabin has some subpar materials. The GLA doesn’t have an overall score in our luxury subcompact SUV rankings because it has not been fully crash tested.

Pros & Cons

  • Straightforward infotainment system
  • Sporty handling
  • Good fuel economy
  • Great predicted reliability rating
  • Harsh ride
  • Slow acceleration from a stop
  • Low-grade interior materials
  • Minimal passenger and cargo room

Research & Ratings

The 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class is unranked in Luxury Subcompact SUVs due to missing safety data. Currently, the Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class's overall score is not available, though its Critics' Rating, Performance score, and Interior score are based on our evaluation of 32 pieces of research and data.

N/A

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 6.9
Performance: 7.0
Interior: 6.0
Safety:
This model has never been fully tested for safety. As a result, it doesn't have an overall score and cannot be ranked against other luxury subcompact suvs.
N/A
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

 Is the Mercedes-Benz GLA a Good SUV?

The GLA is an OK luxury subcompact SUV. Its agile handling and direct steering help deliver one of the most engaging drives in the class while also providing good fuel economy. It has a generous list of standard features as well.

However, this Benz's transmission can struggle to find the right gear, and its ride can be harsh, which is unbefitting of a Mercedes vehicle. The GLA's cabin also fails to live up to the brand’s standards, and passenger and cargo space are tight, even for the class.

Should I Buy the Mercedes-Benz GLA?

The GLA seems appealing at first blush, thanks to its fair price and engaging ride. However, most of its competitors offer more features and provide better value. Both the BMW X1 and the Audi Q3 have similar driving dynamics as the GLA, but they provide a more comfortable ride, and their cabins are more refined.

Compare the GLA, X1, and Q3 »

Should I Buy a New or Used Mercedes-Benz GLA?

The 2020 Mercedes GLA is part of a generation that began with the 2015 model year, and there have been some notable changes since then. For 2016, push-button start and dual-zone automatic climate control became standard, a 180-degree rearview camera was made available, and the AMG model gained 20 horsepower. For 2017, remote start became standard, and Android Auto and Apple CarPlay were made available.

Mercedes redesigned the front and rear bumpers for 2018 and added a rearview camera, a high-definition infotainment display, and 18-inch alloy wheels to the standard features list. For 2020, the AMG variant is unavailable.

We recommend shopping for a used 2018 GLA. You’ll get a vehicle that’s very similar to a new GLA but likely less expensive.

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2017 GLA, 2018 GLA, and 2019 GLA reviews to help make your decision. Also, check out our Used Car Deals page to learn about savings and discounts you can find on used vehicles.

Compare the 2018, 2019, and 2020 GLA »

We Did the Research for You: 30 Reviews Analyzed

To give you a complete overview of the 2020 GLA – and make your car-shopping experience easier – we analyzed 30 Mercedes-Benz GLA reviews alongside performance specs, interior dimensions, and more.

This 2020 GLA review incorporates applicable research for all models in this generation, which launched for 2015.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News Best Cars has been ranking and reviewing vehicles since 2007, and our crew has more than 75 years of combined experience in the auto industry. To ensure our objectivity, we do not accept expensive gifts from carmakers, and an external company manages the ads on our site.

How Much Does the Mercedes-Benz GLA Cost?

The base 2020 GLA 250 has a starting price of $34,250, which is about average for the class. The GLA 250 4Matic, the all-wheel-drive version of this vehicle, starts at $36,250.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Mercedes-Benz dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Mercedes-Benz deals page.

Mercedes-Benz GLA Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Mercedes-Benz GLA or BMW X1?

The BMW X1 is a more well-rounded luxury subcompact SUV than the GLA. Both vehicles deliver engaging rides, but the X1 does it without sacrificing comfort. The X1 also has a livelier base engine and a more refined transmission, which helps it accelerate quicker. To top it off, the X1’s cabin is filled with higher-quality materials than the GLA’s, and it features more back-row space and about 15 additional cubic feet of cargo room.

Which Is Better: Mercedes-Benz GLA or Audi Q3?

The Audi Q3 is a smooth riding and fairly agile crossover. Its engine has some turbo lag, but this Audi still delivers quicker acceleration than the Mercedes, and it comes with a smoother-shifting transmission. All-wheel drive is standard, which is a rarity among the competition. Additionally, the Q3 has one of the most lavish interiors in the class and comes standard with leather upholstery, which you'll have to pay extra for in the Mercedes. The Q3 is a far better option.

Compare the GLA, X1, and Q3 »

GLA Interior

How Many People Does the GLA Seat?

There's seating for up to five in the GLA. The spacious front seats are supportive and comfortable, even for taller folks. Plus, this Benz comes standard with 14-way power-adjustable front seats with memory settings that help the driver find a comfortable position. However, there isn’t much head- or legroom in the back seat. Opting for the panoramic moonroof further limits headroom.

GLA and Child Car Seats

The GLA has two complete sets of LATCH connectors for the rear outboard seats, as well as an upper tether for the rear middle seat.

GLA Interior Quality

This Mercedes has many soft-touch surfaces that are of premium quality, but there are hard plastic trim pieces that make the cabin feel less luxurious than many competitors.

GLA Cargo Space

With just 17.2 cubic feet of space behind the rear seats and 43.6 cubic feet with the back row folded down, the GLA has less cargo room than most luxury subcompact SUVs. It does come standard with a power liftgate, and an available hands-free liftgate makes it easier to load cargo when your hands are full.

GLA Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The GLA comes standard with the COMAND infotainment system and an 8-inch screen that's operated with a rotary controller on the center console. There are also physical controls for the audio and climate functions. The system is intuitive and easy to use.

This Mercedes also comes standard with HD Radio, two USB ports, and Bluetooth. Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, a Harman Kardon premium audio system, satellite radio, navigation, and voice command are available.

For more information, read What Is Apple CarPlay? and What Is Android Auto?

Read more about interior »

GLA Performance

GLA Engine: Leisurely Acceleration

A 208-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder engine comes standard in the GLA 250. It's paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. The base model has enough power for your daily travels, but it takes a while to accelerate from a stop, and the GLA’s transmission can struggle to find the right gear.

GLA Gas Mileage: Better Than Most

With front-wheel drive, the 2020 GLA delivers 24 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway, which is above average for the luxury subcompact SUV class. All-wheel-drive models deliver 1 less mpg in the city and 3 less mpg on the highway.

GLA Ride and Handling: Fun but Uncomfortable

The GLA has sporty handling and is easy to maneuver. That said, the GLA has a firm ride and doesn’t do a great job smoothing out bumps in the road.

Read more about performance »

GLA Reliability        

Is the Mercedes-Benz GLA Reliable?

The 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLA has a stellar predicted reliability rating of 4.5 out of five from J.D. Power.

Mercedes-Benz GLA Warranty

Mercedes-Benz covers the GLA with a four-year/50,000-mile warranty.

Read more about reliability »

How Much Does It Cost to Insure a Mercedes-Benz GLA?

The cost of insuring a Mercedes-Benz GLA will depend on a variety of factors, including your deductible, the level of coverage that you want, and the type of insurance that you choose. Your age, gender, location, credit score, and driving record can also have an impact on your insurance rates. Check out our car insurance guide to find the best policy for you.

GLA Safety

GLA Crash Test Results

Neither the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration nor the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has crash tested the 2020 GLA. This is common for luxury vehicles.

GLA Safety Features

The GLA comes standard with a rearview camera, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, driver drowsiness monitoring, and rain-sensing windshield wipers. Available safety features include a surround-view parking camera system, blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, adaptive cruise control, and automatic parking assist.

Read more about safety »

GLA Dimensions and Weight

The GLA is about 14.5 feet long. Its curb weight ranges from 3,164 to 3,340 pounds.

Where Is the 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLA Built?

Mercedes-Benz builds the 2020 GLA in Germany.

Which Mercedes-Benz GLA Model Is Right for Me?

The 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLA is available in two trims: GLA 250 and GLA 4Matic. Both models come with a turbocharged four-cylinder engine and a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

The only reason to upgrade to the 4Matic is if you want all-wheel drive. Aside from the drivetrain, there aren’t any noticeable differences between these models.

Mercedes-Benz GLA 250

Starting at $34,250, the GLA 250 has synthetic leather upholstery, 14-way power-adjustable front seats, a power liftgate, dual-zone automatic climate control, push-button start, and proximity keyless entry. It also comes standard with the COMAND infotainment system that includes an 8-inch screen, two USB ports, Bluetooth, and HD Radio.

Several safety features are standard, including a rearview camera, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, driver drowsiness monitoring, and rain-sensing windshield wipers.

The Premium package costs $1,900 and includes blind spot monitoring, heated front seats, and satellite radio. The $400 Convenience package features a universal garage door opener and auto-dimming mirrors. The Multimedia package costs $2,300 and comes with Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, navigation, and voice command.

The $1,500 Driver Assistance package adds active safety features like adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, and lane keep assist. The Parking Assistance package is $1,400 and includes automatic parking assist, a surround-view parking camera system, power-folding side mirrors, and auto-dimming mirrors.

Standalone options include a Harman Kardon premium audio system for $850 and leather upholstery for $1,650.

Mercedes-Benz GLA 250 4Matic

The GLA 250 4Matic starts at $36,250 and adds all-wheel drive. All other features are nearly identical to the base model's.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Mercedes-Benz dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Mercedes-Benz deals page.

See 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLA specs and trims »

The Final Call

The 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLA is an OK luxury subcompact SUV. It offers sporty handling, good fuel economy estimates, and a solid number of standard features, but its powertrain is unrefined, its ride can be rough, and classmates have nicer cabin materials.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • With its diminutive size and nimble demeanor, the GLA-class feels more like a hatchback than many of its crossover competitors." -- Car and Driver
  • "Based on a platform used to build small cars for Europe, the GLA combines performance and Mercedes luxury at the price of an average family sedan." -- Edmunds (2019)
  • The 2019 Mercedes-Benz GLA250 straddles that vague ground between crossover SUV and hatchback. This subcompact vehicle has the much-loved raised driving position and offers all-wheel drive. But whereas most crossover SUVs tend to be a bit more (or a lot more) imposing, the GLA250 makes a little less of a splash." -- Kelley Blue Book (2019) 

Buying

Expert Advice

Last Updated: January 24, 2020

Declining Demand: The Mercedes-Benz GLA was the second-best selling luxury subcompact SUV in 2018, and it maintained that position through to the end of 2019. However, dealerships moved 8.3 percent fewer GLA models last year compared to 2018.

Research more buying advice »
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2020 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class

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