Based on the MFA2 vehicle platform for transverse applications, the A-Class Sedan and company have been hit with a safety recall in the United States of America. No fewer than 42,742 vehicles are recalled, including the coupe-styled CLA, crossover-bodied GLA, and the GLB.
It all started in February 2020 with a report from the quality assurance department over a missing brake inspection gauge for the rear brakes. Mercedes-Benz AG was further notified that information for using said inspection gauge isn’t featured in the owner’s manual. In other words, the aforementioned vehicles may fail to comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 135.
Mercedes promptly started investigating said concerns, determining that it’s no biggie. Even with the rear brakes completely gone, Merc says that the front brakes provide sufficient brake force to meet the legal performance requirements for stopping distance. On September 4, 2020, the Stuttgart-based automaker deemed the noncompliance as being inconsequential with regard to motor vehicle safety. What a cheapskate, right? The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, however, denied the three-year-old petition for inconsequentiality in October 2023.
Given the federal watchdog’s reply, Mercedes-Benz USA didn’t have a choice but to issue safety recall number 23V-732 for the A-Class Sedan, CLA, GLA, and GLB. Adding insult to injury, Mercedes changed the documentation of the production control system back in May 2020. Affected vehicles were assembled for the 2019 through 2020 model years, ranging from lowly specifications (such as the A 220) to go-faster versions (such as the CLA 35 and CLA 45).
Production dates range from August 20, 2018 through May 15, 2020. Dealers have already been told to add the rear brake inspection gauge and enclose the supplemental owner’s manual information for using said gauge. Of course, dealers will also check the wear of the rear pads.
Owners will be notified by first-class mail before December 31, 2023. In the meantime, owners can determine whether their vehicles are included in this recall or not by entering the VIN on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s website. The VIN look-up tool for recalls is free of charge.
The most affordable Mercedes intended for the US market, the A 220 Sedan carries a starting price of $33,950 at press time. $2,000 gets you 4MATIC all-wheel drive rather than front-wheel drive. Being the 220, this version makes do with 188 ponies and 221 pound-feet (300 Nm) of torque.
The CLA starts with the 250 at $39,350 for 221 horsepower and 258 pound-feet (350 Nm), whereas the 382-horsepower AMG CLA 45 is available at $57,800 sans freight charge. At $37,500 right off the bat, the GLA 250 is the Stuttgart-based marque’s most affordable crossover.
Offering three-row seating, the roomier GLB is understandably pricier than its two-row sibling. The 250 stickers at $39,800, boasting the same 221 horsepower and 258 pound-feet as the aforementioned GLA 250. Once again, 4MATIC all-wheel drive is a $2,000 optional extra.