Mercedes-Benz Concept A Sedan debuts in Shanghai
The Mercedes-Benz Concept A Sedan has debuted as the latest in a line of concepts that Benz has been unveiling for the past year. It's more purist and complete than previous designs have been, and it's currently being showcased at Auto Shanghai.
The Mercedes-Benz Concept A Sedan is a more complete look at the Aesthetics A Concept shown in January 2017. Where that design was more opaque and less readily defined, the Concept A Sedan is definite.
Indeed, the A shows that Mercedes is serious about dropping the hard lines and well-defined edges of past design languages. Clearly "the time of creases is over," says Gorden Wagener, Chief Design Officer of Daimler AG. Mercedes-Benz is calling this "Sensual Purity" and it seems to work – especially on the compact sedan being showcased in China.
The Concept A Sedan is a small four-door design that measures 179.9 inches (456.9 cm) in length and 73.6 inches (186.9 cm) in width. It stands 57.6 inches (146.3 cm) high and creates a proportional look at a small sedan in a "three box" language. Short overhangs and a high belt and low roofline create a sporty look that counteracts the near-vertical rear pillar and wider windows.
The most striking part of the Concept A Sedan is its overall curve, which is similar to current Mercedes-Benz designs (as seen on the C300) without the heavy lines and creases that normally emphasize that curve. Simple lines on the hood (Mercedes calls these "Powerdomes") and across the beltline create the curve, but the body panels and rear quarter remain largely unadorned. Bone lines underneath the curving bodywork can be detected, though, subtly pulling the eye across the curve.
It's a beautifully understated look that allows the front fascia and its dominating grille centered by a three-point Mercedes-Benz star to define the car's curb presence. Lighting helps to bolster this powerful, but not overbearing, presence through slim LED headlamps that are coated in a special UV paint which creates a colorful "glow" when light shines through. The rear lamps use the same tech.
Nowhere, in fact, is the new simplicity of Mercedes-Benz design language more obvious than at the rear of the Concept A Sedan. The usual lines and opposing creases have been eliminated, along with the gaps they often create, in favor of a flatter visual. The bumper is defined as the apex of a sideways V at the rear, with one end being the integrated spoiler on the deck lid and the other being the rear diffuser with integrated exhaust ports. The rear window cants in fastback coupe style with a slight crease from the pillar adding a bit of speed to the look.