First leaked images of the Mercedes-Benz CLA compact sedan image

Mercedes’ long anticipated A Class-based CLA compact sedan is here, with the first official photos having surfaced on a French car forum.

The five pics, three exterior and two interior images, show a regular CLA model fitted with the AMG design package. Although Mercedes-Benz hasn’t yet posted photos of the new CLA, the images look to be as official as they can be. And since the 4.6-meter long sedan will be offered in the U.S. as well, the official debut of the car is likely to happen at the Detroit auto show in January.

The CLA is the first ever front-wheel drive Mercedes-Benz sedan. If we’re to believe the information posted on the Forumpro, the CLA will be offered with four engine options, with other variants to follow in the fall of 2013. There will be three petrol units: the CLA 180 BlueEFFICIENCY (122 HP), the CLA 200 BlueEFFICIENCY (156 HP) and the CLA 250 4MATIC BlueEFFICIENCY (211 HP), with all-wheel drive. The only diesel engine to be offered at the beginning will be the CLA 220 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY (170 HP).

Later, Mercedes-Benz will also offer the CLA 45 AMG 4MATIC model with 350 horsepower and 450 Nm of torque. Three more diesels will follow in 2014, the CLA 180 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY with 109 HP, the CLA 200 CDI 4MATIC BlueEFFICIENCY WITH 136 HP and the CLA 220 CDI 4MATIC BlueEFFICIENCY with 170 HP.

The CLA order books open on January 14 2013, with market launch to follow on April 13 2013. The base price for the entry-level model should be around 28,000 euros. The CLA will be built exclusively at the Kecskemet plant in Hungary.