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Image credit: Chris Velazco/Engadget

Mercedes' connected A-Class sedan will start at $32,500

It's the first Merc with the MBUX interface in the US.
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Chris Velazco/Engadget

Ever since Mercedes-Benz unveiled the first A-Class destined for the US, there's been one question on would-be drivers' lips: just how accessible is this tech-savvy Merc, really? Now you know. The brand has revealed that the 'entry' 2019 sedan will start at $32,500 for the base A220, while the AWD-equipped A220 4MATIC variant will begin at $34,500. That's not as inexpensive as it could be (Canadians pay the equivalent of $27,000 for a hatchback), but it's still relatively accessible for the first US-bound car to run Mercedes' smarter MBUX platform.

The centerpiece feature is, as you might be aware, standard voice control. Say "hey Mercedes" and you can tweak the temperature or adjust the radio without taking your hands off the wheel. If you don't care to talk to your car, MBUX still provides a highly digital interface between the 7-inch screen-based instruments and a similarly-sized touchscreen for the infotainment system. We found it surprisingly intuitive in our hands-on last summer, and its behavior evolves with your habits.

You'll also get an unusually wide repertoire of safety features. The core A-Class touts assists for braking, crosswinds and hill starts, while you can spring for more luxurious technologies like distance keeping cruise control (aka Distronic) and steering assistance. Yes, t he price is likely to climb quickly if you tick all the option checkboxes, but this beats having to buy a costlier Mercedes just to relax when you're behind the wheel.

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