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For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Mercedes AMG CLA have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The Cadillac CT4 V-Series doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.
The AMG CLA’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The CT4 V-Series doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.
To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the AMG CLA. But it costs extra on the CT4 V-Series.
The AMG CLA offers an optional Surround View System to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The CT4 V-Series only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.
The AMG CLA’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The CT4 V-Series doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
Both the AMG CLA and the CT4 V-Series have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Mercedes vehicles are better in initial quality than Cadillac vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 12th in initial quality. With 6 more problems per 100 vehicles, Cadillac is ranked 17th.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Mercedes vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 13th in reliability, above the industry average. With 32 more problems per 100 vehicles, Cadillac is ranked 23rd.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Mercedes vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Mercedes 9 places higher in reliability than Cadillac.
The AMG CLA 45’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 57 more horsepower (382 vs. 325) than the CT4 V-Series’ 2.7 turbo 4-cylinder.
On the EPA test cycle the AMG CLA 35 Auto gets better fuel mileage than the CT4 V-Series AWD (23 city/29 hwy vs. 20 city/28 hwy).
The AMG CLA offers a standard sequential manual gearbox (SMG). With no clutch pedal to worry about and a fully automatic mode, an SMG is much more efficient than a conventional automatic but just as easy to drive. The CT4 V-Series doesn’t offer an SMG or a conventional manual transmission.
For better stopping power the AMG CLA’s brake rotors are larger than those on the CT4 V-Series:
AMG CLA 45 opt.
The AMG CLA’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The CT4 V-Series doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the AMG CLA is 3.1 inches wider in the front and 1.7 inches wider in the rear than on the CT4 V-Series.
The AMG CLA has .2 inches more front headroom, .5 inches more rear legroom and .1 inches more rear shoulder room than the CT4 V-Series.
The AMG CLA has a larger trunk than the CT4 V-Series (11.6 vs. 10.7 cubic feet).
To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, just kicking your foot under the back bumper can open the AMG CLA’s available trunk, leaving your hands completely free. The CT4 V-Series doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.
The AMG CLA uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The CT4 V-Series uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.
Unlike the driver-only memory seat and mirrors in the CT4 V-Series, the AMG CLA has standard driver and passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.
The AMG CLA’s front and rear power windows all open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The CT4 V-Series’ rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully.
If the windows are left open on the AMG CLA the driver can close them all from a distance using the remote. On a hot day the driver can also lower the windows the same way. The driver of the CT4 V-Series can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
The CT4 V-Series’ optional cornering lamps activate a lamp on the front corner when the turn signal is activated. The AMG CLA’s optional adaptive cornering lights turn the actual headlight unit up to several degrees, depending on steering wheel angle and vehicle speed. This lights a significant distance into corners at any speed.
The AMG CLA’s optional Active Parking Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, starting, stopping and changing direction automatically. The CT4 V-Series doesn’t offer an automated parking system.
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