This is good news, if you like small, light weight sports cars like I do. It seems that Mercedes is considering building a small, open-topped car based on its A-Class platform. The A-Class is unknown here in the U.S., it’s a small, urban kind of car, that sort of resembles a shrunken minivan, and is more well known, in an engineering sense, for its powertrain packaging.
It also turns out that the A-class might provide a transportation option of more interest to the car enthusiast like us.
The proposed car would be even smaller then the SLK, and, assuredly, lighter. Although the SLK is a fun car, it IS a Merc, which means it is heavier than if it was made by, say, a Japanese company. Not so with the new A-class based roadster.
Part of this grows out of the fact that Mercedes is updating the A, coming out with a completely new model. This presents them with certain opportunities. To wit:
“It is part of the regular new-model review at Mercedes-Benz to look at ideas from the past,” a senior Mercedes-Benz official told AutoWeek. “When the SLA was originally proposed at the end of the last decade, we didn’t have a suitable platform; the sandwich platform is too high and too heavy. This problem will be alleviated with the arrival of the next A-class, whose new platform provides much greater scope in terms of the sort of variants it can support.”
In other words, they ain’t sayin’ yes, but they ain’t sayin’ no either so … we can still hope.