The W177 A-Class was revealed a few years ago and it now serves as the entry-level Mercedes luxury sedan/hatchback. The A160 is the entry-level Mercedes A-Class which means that the A160 is the cheapest entry into Mercedes Benz ownership.
The A160 is being offered with a 1.3L 4-cylinder turbo engine with 109hp and 132lb-ft of torque. This might be considered weak, but for a city car, the 43MPG the A160 offers is perfect. It comes with the Mercedes 9G-Tronic Automatic transmission that is both smooth and seamless.
Even though the W177 is a fairly new car, it does come with its fair share of issues. The most common ones are engine-related such as the engine shutting down or being unable to restart. Owners have also reported issues with the electronics, particularly with the exterior lighting.
The 1.3L 4-cylinder is known to leak oil while the battery housing is also known to get damaged due to water ingress. Finally, owners have also reported issues with the DCT gearbox where due to a manufacturing mishap some DCT gearboxes might come with a bit too much oil in the gearbox.
Back in Mach of 2019, Mercedes issued the RC2647 recall because the engine in the new A-Class was prone to issues such as shutting down or not being able to turn on. The issue was down to software as the powertrain control unit was not able to prompt the engine warning light if someone goes wrong. This meant that the control unit could cause issues that typically result in an inoperative engine.
These issues affect A-Class models built between 22 May 2018 and the 4th of February 2019. If you are interested in buying the A-Class, be sure to cross-reference the VIN in order to find out of the car you are looking at was built in this period.
Mercedes A160 electrical issues
The new A-Class was also part of a recall due to an issue with the headlights. This issue meant that the automatic high beam headlights tend to stay on even when they should turn off which means that they were dazzling oncoming drivers and thus increased the chances of having an accident. Additional electrical issues were associated with the airbag control unit and the emergency call system.
Most of these are easy to repair and they don’t tend to reappear. Mercedes even issued a nationwide recall for the high-beam headlight issue because many cars were affected.
Mercedes A160 oil leak issues
The 1.3L 4-cylinder engine was also part of a significant recall, the RC2819. The issue here was that the oil makes its way out through the turbocharger oil feed line and it then leaks onto the underfloor paneling. Depending on the severity of this issue, the oil could even go further than that, and if it came in contact with hot components a fire might be caused.
Furthermore, the oil eventually exists from the underfloor paneling and it finds its way onto the road surface which is obviously a huge safety hazard as cars are unable to maintain traction on an oily road. Issues such as these need to be checked if you are after an A160 Mercedes because they are indeed dangerous.
Mercedes A160 water ingress issues
The Mercedes W177 also comes with a specific problem in which the battery housing seals tend to let water in after a while. This tends to cause battery corrosion which inevitably affects the performance of the battery which starts causing all sorts of electrical issues down the line.
This was also part of a major A-Class recall, the RC2970. A corroded battery is not able to maintain its current, especially if the terminals are affected. This also poses a risk that the battery might completely die without any warning signs.
Mercedes A160 transmission issues
The Mercedes A160 equipped with the DCT transmission is also known to experience issues such as too much oil in the transmission or the fact that the transmission is unable to shift the gears as intended. Given the fact that this transmission issue was down to a manufacturing fault, Mercedes also issues the R2838 recall because of it.
With too much oil in the transmission, the transmission tends to foam up and it starts leaking which can cause a myriad of different problems. As such, be sure to investigate if the A160 you are looking at had these issues.
Is the Mercedes A160 a reliable car?
It seems like the Mercedes A160 is indeed a fairly reliable car, especially compared to the previous generation A-Class which was not. Mercedes has made sure that the new A-Class is leagues above the older one because the older one was not really able to compete with the Audi A3 and the BMW 1-Series.
The A-Class needs, just like any other Mercedes, constant and thorough maintenance in order to be as reliable as it can be. If you do that, you are likely going to enjoy a trouble-free experience for quite a while.
Is the Mercedes A160 slow?
109hp is a bit weak for a car such as Mercedes, no matter if it’s a hatchback, a sedan, or an SUV. A 0-60mph time of 10.9 seconds is slow indeed, but most people don’t really care about that. The top speed of the A160 is 124mph which is also something most people don’t care about as no one is going to drive at such speeds anyway.
What is important is the overtaking capability and it’s safe to say that the A160 does lack when it comes to overtaking. This is not all that necessary if you are primarily driving around town, but if you go on a highway often, you should go for a more powerful A-Class model.
Should I buy the Mercedes A160?
The Mercedes A160 is a true Mercedes experience car, yet it is rather a bit too slow for many. As such, if you spend the majority of time in town and you don’t really care about speed and acceleration, the A160 is likely one of the best smaller luxury cars you can buy.
The A-Class offers a gorgeous class-leading interior design, a premium badge, and enough space for up to four moderately-sized adults.