Mercedes-Benz A 180 CDI ECO SE: 78.5 mpg

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Mercedes Benz A Class

The new Mercedes-Benz A 180 CDI ECO SE offers fuel economy of 78.5 mpg, with CO2 emissions of just 92 g/km.

There’s also the new Mercedes-Benz B 180 CDI ECO SE, which returns 74.3 mpg, with CO2 emissions of 98 g/km.

The ECO SE vehicles, available from January 2014, both feature weight-saving measures, powertrain refinements and improved fuel consumption – with no impact on performance – and improved aerodynamics, with the A 180 CDI ECO SE offering a class-leading coefficient drag of 0.26.

These changes include the use of an aerodynamic grille element, coupled with underbody panelling and lowered suspension (-10 mm front and 15 mm rear for the A-Class, and 20 mm at the front and 15 mm at the rear for the B-Class).

Both vehicles feature manual transmissions with longer ratios in the higher gears, an improved energy recuperation system and make use of a lightweight fuel tank to save on weight.

Replacing the current A 180 CDI SE and B 180 CDI SE manual variants, CO2 emissions on the A 180 CDI ECO SE have been reduced by six per cent to 92 g/km, with combined fuel consumption increased to 78.5 mpg, compared with 74.3 mpg on the outgoing model.

B 180 CDI ECO SE emissions have also reduced to 98 g/km CO2, a reduction of nine per cent, with the combined mpg increasing by eight per cent to 74.3 mpg. For both models the power, torque, top speed and 0-60 mph acceleration remains unchanged.

Both vehicles are free from road tax and the Benefit In Kind company car tax band for the A-Class is just 13 per cent, with qualification for 100 per cent capital allowance until 2015.

The A 180 CDI ECO SE is priced from £21,965, with the B 180 CDI ECO SE from £22,950.

In addition to the new ECO SE models, the advanced four-wheel drive system first seen on the CLA 250 4MATIC also comes to the A- and B-Class from January 2014.

4MATIC all-wheel drive ensures optimum traction and driving dynamics in all road conditions, with torque ideally distributed between front and rear axles by an electro-hydraulically controlled multi-disc clutch with variable torque distribution, which allows as much as 50 per cent of power to be sent to the rear wheels.

The A 250 4MATIC is available in both AMG Sport and Engineered by AMG trim, with the B 220 CDI 4MATIC exclusively in Sport trim.

The A 250 4MATIC is available from £28,985 for the AMG Sport trim and £30,905 for the Engineered by AMG trim, whilst the B 220 CDI 4MATIC stars at £28,135 OTR.

Read our Mercedes A-Class review