Automotive.com has, for months, been covering the upcoming Mercedes-Benz A-Class, a compact hatchback scheduled to arrive here in the states sometime next year along with the slightly larger B-Class.
Now it looks like a third vehicle is in the works. Mercedes announced that production of the A-Class has begun at its manufacturing plant in Rastatt, Germany. Three vehicle lines are scheduled to be built there: the A-Class; the B-Class, which started production last September; and a compact crossover. States Daimler Chairman Dr. Dieter Zetsche, “This start of production marks a further milestone in our Mercedes-Benz 2020 growth strategy. The A-Class represents our offensive in the compact segment. And there is more to come: The compact SUV will be the third model we will build here in Rastatt.”
No details have emerged about this new compact crossover which may not be crossing over here to the states. Because it’s being built in the same plant as the A-Class and B-Class, the compact crossover/SUV will most likely share the same platform as the other two vehicles. The platform, called the Mercedes Front Architecture, or MFA, is a new front-wheel drive chassis which the automaker hopes to build future vehicles priced less than $30,000. Right now, the Mercedes-Benz C-Class has the least expensive vehicles with the C300 starting around $36,000.
Besides the crossover/SUV, a MFA-based coupe is also in the works. It will most likely be built at the Mercedes-Benz plant in Kecskemet, Hungary.