“Hey Mercedes, tell me a joke”

“I’m sorry, my engineers were German”

Honestly was expecting a worse version of the CLA with a slightly nicer interior. What I experienced was way better than a CLA in every way.

The interior is nicer. The transmission is smoother. The voice control, while not as good as Siri, is still pretty good, like on a level with a smartphone instead of on a level with a car. It has real buttons. But it also has touchpads, which I still strongly dislike but they’re better than the previous version as seen in 205's etc.

Another huge improvement, you can actually see out of it unlike the CLA with it’s stupid roofline and B-pillars too far forward.

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It’s not fast, but it also doesn’t feel slow. The ride is better than a CLA. Handling was fine, I guess. Nothing too inspiring. But it had the skinny 17's with all season tires and some sidewall. I’m sure a different wheel and tire package would improve it significantly. It was still agile and fun enough though.

The augmented reality navigation was cool. It uses a forward facing camera to display the road ahead on the center screen and overlays direction arrows, street names, and house numbers over that image.

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You can control pretty much any vehicle function easily with voice control. Even something like changing ambient lighting brightness and color. Power sunshade. Whatever.

I had it navigate to multiple locations just by saying their names and it would quickly pull them up without trouble or confusion. The telematics in this car are a huge leap forward for us. I didn’t even feel the need for Apple car play or Android auto.

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It’s not perfect, but it finally feels like we have an entry level car that’s worth the money (as long as you don’t get it fully loaded, that’ll easily top $45k, my tester was right at $35k).