$24,048 - $37,654

2016 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class was new.


Interior: 7.6

The Mercedes-Benz GLA has a posh interior filled with high-end materials, according to auto journalists. They say the seats are comfortable, although they note that the rear seats are short on legroom. Some like the dashboard’s layout, while others find the infotainment screen obtrusive. Most agree that the central controller makes the infotainment system easy to use. The 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLA offers less cargo space than nearly every rival.

  • "If you liked the interior of the CLA compact sedan, so too will the GLA strike your fancy. With a design language similar to that found in the sedan, the SUV carries forth with well-executed materials that clearly label this as a Mercedes-Benz. Soft-touch materials abound with single-needle tailoring." -- Left Lane News (2015)
  • "There's lots of room inside, a handsome interior with loads of X-shaped vents to ensure your climate-controlled comfort, and a large monitor that sits proudly atop the center column." -- Road and Track (2015)
  • "The cabin is modern Mercedes-Benz, closest to the CLA-class in terms of overall design, with which the GLA-class shares a platform." -- AutoWeek (2015)
  • "[T]he GLA serves up a rich and well-appointed cabin. The uniquely styled dashboard fascia and trim materials are on par with those of the CLA sedan in terms of quality." -- Edmunds (2015)
  • "[T]his bubble-like greenhouse is bestowed with poplar, burl walnut, or aluminum trim options which make it feel rather upscale in spite of its accessible price point." -- Kelley Blue Book (2015)


The 2016 GLA seats five and comes standard with vinyl upholstery and a power-adjustable driver's seat. Leather upholstery, a power-adjustable passenger’s seat, heated front seats and sport seats with extra support are available.

Test drivers praise the comfortable seats, saying they are great for long drives. They add that finding a comfortable driving position is easy, and visibility is good. Critics find ample headroom throughout the vehicle, but some point out that legroom is cramped in the rear seats.

  • The GLA's fourteen-way power seats offered hours of comfort on the twisty turns of backroad Vermont. Combined with the tilt and telescoping three-spoke steering wheel, virtually anyone can find a good seating position....as long as you can stay out of the rear seat. Since this is a compact SUV, chances are, most will find the rear seat legroom um, rather challenging. On the other hand, they do fold down in a 60-40 split." -- Left Lane News (2015)
  • "Without the [CLA-Class] sedan's sloping roofline, the GLA is less cramped inside-its A-pillar doesn't crowd the driver and rear-seat headroom is adequate for adults." -- Automobile Magazine (2015)
  • "Though the 2015 GLA-Class feels somewhat coupe-like from the front seats (which is no accident - after all, it's essentially based on the so-called 4-door coupe format of the CLA), rear passengers are met with more generous headroom thanks to the GLA's 3.5-inch-taller SUV profile." -- Kelley Blue Book (2015)
  • "Visibility is quite good and folks of average stature should have plenty of headroom in the back." -- Motor Trend (2015)
  • "The seating position in the GLA is well thought out, and despite the relatively high shoulder line it's easy to spot objects when maneuvering though a parking lot." -- AutoWeek (2015)

Interior Features

Standard features in the GLA include push-button start, dual-zone automatic climate control, Bluetooth, HD Radio, a USB port, automatic pre-collision braking, driver drowsiness monitoring and an infotainment system with a 7-inch display screen and a central control knob. The mbrace Connect package, which allows drivers to remotely access their car from their smartphone or computer, is also standard. Available features include a panoramic sunroof, a Harman Kardon sound system, TuneIn world radio, satellite radio, an in-vehicle Wi-Fi hot spot, voice recognition, an SD card reader, three additional mbrace packages, blind spot monitoring, lane keep assist, a rearview camera, adaptive cruise control, front and rear parking sensors, parallel park assist and an upgraded infotainment system with navigation and an 8-inch display.

The central controller makes using the infotainment system a breeze, according to reviewers. Some find the display screen's conspicuous location atop the dash distasteful. Critics add that the available sunroof makes the interior feel open and inviting.

See 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLA specs »

  • "The interior of both versions is straight-up CLA, with a pair of easy-to-read gauges in the instrument panel, five round air vents, and the ‘third eye’ infotainment screen that sits prominently atop the dash." -- Car and Driver (2015)
  • "The latest version of Mercedes-Benz's infotainment system, being a relative of the system that debuted in the mid-2000s, is still easy to use via the Comand controller on the center console, similar to BMW's iDrive." -- AutoWeek (2015)
  • A spartan, no-nonsense gauge binnacle offers driver information, including a central TFT screen that can be changed to display navigation, audio, trip and performance information. The freestanding seven-inch display holds sway atop the center console and to us is one of the least desirable features of this interior." -- Left Lane News (2015)
  • "Epic sunroofs are fine and dandy on larger vehicles, but where you really appreciate their airy touch is on smaller cars like the GLA. In this application, the big expanse of glass opens up the cabin and makes it a more pleasant space." -- Kelley Blue Book (2015)


The Mercedes-Benz GLA has 14.9 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats up and 43.6 cubic feet of space with them folded down. Both estimates are below average for the class. A power liftgate and a fold-flat passenger seat are standard. Automotive writers report that loading heavy items is difficult because of the cargo area's high liftover height.

  • "Unfortunately the liftover is set quite high, making it a chore to load heavy luggage." -- Edmunds (2015)

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