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Used Mercedes-Benz A-Class Review

30 Sep 2022

If you’re in the market for a used Mercedes-Benz A-Class, you clearly know a good car when you see one. With its stylish exterior and an interior packed with premium features, the A-Class is a family car at heart - although it’s the sort of car you won’t want to let the kids in, particularly with muddy shoes.

Available as a hatchback or saloon and with a full range of engines - economic diesels, cleaner plug-in hybrids and high-performance AMG versions - you’re sure to find an A-Class to suit you. But what’s the best used Mercedes-Benz A-Class to buy and how much should you expect to pay?

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Advanced safety features
  • Fantastic looks for an entry-level car
  • Comfortable ride

Cons

  • Some rivals are more fun to drive
  • Expensive to buy
  • Could be more boot space

How does it look?

Before 2013, the Mercedes-Benz A-Class was a rather stubby, upright affair. It was safe and space-efficient but it couldn’t compete with its sporty and more stylish rivals like the Audi A3 and the BMW 1 Series. The third generation, launched in 2013, changed all that. It was longer, lower and infinitely more stylish, giving it a much broader appeal. 

The Mk3 (from 2013-2018) and Mk4 A-Class (from 2018 to present) are smart, classy family hatchbacks. Although they both look very similar, the Mk3 has slightly more rounded features, while the Mk4 is sleeker and sharper. 

Inside, the onboard fittings and fixtures ooze quality, with lots of premium materials and supportive, comfortable seats. As you’d expect from a Mercedes-Benz, everything is nicely put together, and although the materials differ depending on the trim level, even the entry-level spec is at least as good as the rivals. That said, some of the other cars in its class have more spacious rear seats and boots. If you’re set on an A-Class and interior space is a priority, it’s worth stretching your budget to a Mk4 A-Class if you can. 

What’s it like to drive? 

The Mk3 Mercedes A-Class is very capable on the road without being spectacular. Its firm suspension doesn’t quite deliver the sporty ride you might expect - unless you opt for the A45 AMG. However, it grips well and feels flat and stable. The driving position is low and the firm seats hold you securely through the bends. 

If you’re on the lookout for a used Mk4 Mercedes-Benz for sale, it’ll cost you more but you’ll benefit from a better driving experience overall. The suspension is less firm and more giving, and while you will feel the bigger bumps, the ride quality is better. 

On the whole, the A-Class engines are very good, although you may have to work some of the lower-powered petrol engines if you’re in a rush. You won’t have that problem with the A35 and A45 AMG performance models, both of which are electric to drive. The A45, in particular, is one of the fastest, most powerful hot hatches ever made.  

Which is the best used Mercedes-Benz A-Class to buy?

If you’re looking for a Mk3 used Mercedes-Benz A-Class, you can’t go too far wrong with the 1.6-litre petrol-engined A180. You might find that its 122bhp leaves you a little lacking in power at times, but it’s economical enough and more refined than the diesel engines. The A200 provides some extra power, with its 156bhp version of the same engine, but it’s also quite a bit thirstier. If you are going to be covering plenty of miles, it’s worth switching to the diesels, although you will have to contend with their relatively loud engines. 

The trim levels for the Mk3 A-Class are straightforward enough, with the pre-2015 facelift models having air-con and rear and front electric windows as standard. The SE brings 16-inch alloys, sports seats and satnav, while the Sport adds 17-inch rims and cruise control. The post-facelift cars get better equipment as standard, with active brake assist, keyless-go, cruise control and 16-inch alloy wheels all at entry level. 

When shopping around for a used Mk4 Mercedes-Benz A-Class for sale, it’s worth looking out for the A250e plug-in hybrid, which delivers a pure-electric range of 45 miles to keep your fuel bill down. The A180d is the most economical diesel, delivering over 50mpg on average, while the A180 petrol will give you economy in the 40s. Buy an A35 or A45 AMG and you’ll be lucky to get fuel economy in the 30s, but let’s be honest, you’ll be having too much fun you won’t care.  

All Mk4 A-Classes are well equipped, with the entry-level SE coming loaded with cruise control, DAB radio, keyless go, 16-inch alloy wheels and a 7-inch touch-screen display. The Sport adds LED headlights, 17-inch wheels and dual-zone climate control, while the AMG Line models include body styling, sports seats and 18-inch rims.   

How much is a used Mercedes A-Class?

Used Mercedes-Benz A-Classes are generally more expensive than their premium-badged rivals, with prices starting at around £7,500 for the earliest Mk3 A-Class from 2013. We think it’s worth spending up to £10,000 to get lower a mileage model with a full service history. You can expect to see used A-Classes for sale from 2015 for between £11,000 and £13,000, while upwards of £15,000 will buy you a nice 2017 or 2018 model.  

If you want a used Mk4 Mercedes-Benz A-Class, expect to part with over £20,000 for an average mileage 2019 model, more than £25,000 for a 2020 car and upwards of £30,000 for something from 2021. 

Want a little more fun in your life? Used A35 and A45 AMGs start at around £25,000 for post-facelift Mk3s and rise to £50,000 for low mileage models from 2021.

 

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