Mercedes Benz India has commenced bookings for two of its upcoming models – the new GLA compact luxury SUV as well as the diesel version of the S-class, the S 350 sedan.
The Mercedes GLA compact luxury SUV is based on the front-wheel-drive MFA-platform that also underpins the A- and B-class. The SUV is comparable in size to the Audi Q3 and is expected to go on sale in India around the festive season. Mercedes dealers are currently taking orders for only one variant of the GLA, the GLA 220 CDI diesel. Mercedes Benz had showcased the GLA SUV at the Auto Expo 2014 earlier this year.
The Mercedes GLA 220 CDI is expected to come with a 2143cc diesel motor good for 167bhp. This is the same motor that does duty on the Mercedes A-class hatchback where it is detuned to put out 107bhp. The booking amount for the GLA 220 CDI is Rs 50,000 with deliveries being promised around September-October 2014.
Mercedes Benz has also started taking bookings for the diesel-powered S-class sedan. The S 350 CDI will be manufactured locally and will officially launch on June 5, 2014.
The Mercedes-Benz S 350 CDI will have similar equipment levels as the locally-made S 500, although it will skimp on certain features available on the range-topping version. The Burmester sound system will come without 3D surround system and there’ll be plain leather upholstery instead of nappa. The rear seat will be a bench instead of two individual seats. The S 350 CDI won’t have centre-armrest mounted tables for the rear passengers, nor chilling and heating cupholders. It will get a normal reversing camera instead of the 360-degree unit on the S 500. The Mercedes night-vision package also won’t be on offer on the S 350 CDI.
Mercedes is expected to price the S 350 CDI at around Rs 1.25 crore (estimated, ex-showroom). The Merc S 350 is a fair bit more expensive than direct rivals like the A8 L 3.0 TDI (Rs 1.12 crore), BMW 730Ld (Rs 1.02 crore) and the recently launched, locally assembled Jaguar XJ 3.0 TDI (Rs 92.1 lakh). The premium Mercedes is asking for over rivals can be put down to the fact that the S 350 is a whole generation ahead in terms of tech on offer. The booking amount for the S 350 CDI is Rs 5 lakh with deliveries being promised by end-June or early July.
(All prices, ex-showroom)