You’ve probably heard Mercedes say it will discontinue some of its compact cars after the current-generation model runs its course. While models like the A-Class Sedan, B-Class minivan, and the CLA Shooting Brake are in jeopardy, it makes sense for the GLA to stick around given how crossover-obsessed people are right now. A series of new spy shots give us an early glimpse of the next GLA, disguised as a test mule using an existing body.
While there’s no point in talking about the looks of the car, we noticed this test mule sitting slightly higher than normal. There’s a good reason for that because we can see a large battery under the vehicle. According to our friends at Motor. es who were kind enough to share these spy shots with us, the next GLA will drop the plug-in hybrid setup in favor of a self-charging hybrid system.
In fact, they claim a self-charging hybrid will be the only way to buy the new GLA as Mercedes allegedly intends to discontinue the petrol and diesel variants altogether. The all-electric EQA will once again be offered, although it could go by a different name as the German luxury brand will reportedly start phasing out its EQ branding starting in 2024.
As radical as the change may be to limit powertrain offerings to hybrid and electric versions for the new GLA, we can’t say we were surprised. After all, the Euro 7 standard will enter into force in the European Union in 2025, and that will make it more difficult for automakers to comply with emission regulations. Separately, Mercedes has said it will be ready to offer an electric-only lineup in Europe by 2030 “wherever market conditions permit”, so the writing on the wall is for a pure ICE model.
In November 2020, Mercedes and Chinese automaker Geely announced a partnership to develop a hybrid powertrain together. It makes sense that the next wave of compact cars will benefit from this technology, and we’ll get our first look at it in the updated CLA debuting in 2024. Since this GLA is an early test mule, logic tells us that the production model won’t be launched until later in 2025. Geely’s Volvo will also use this hybrid powertrain, which will be produced in Europe and China.