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#UrbanDiscovery. Memories for life with CLA Shooting Brake and CLA Coupé.

Guest article: #UrbanDiscovery – Memories for life.

With CLA und CLA Shooting Brake from Milan to Paris.
Text: Zaid Hamid

Memories and stories for everyone.

Making memories is what I live for and there is nothing more special than sharing them with those around me. Stories made with people that the audience have never met, countries foreign as well as those I consider home. There is nothing I want to do more than invite people in to view the show reels of my memories, something that social media has revolutionised. Mercedes-Benz is unique in a number of ways, but there is one particular reason why I have such a soft spot for the brand. They want to make memories that we can share across the world so millions of you can share these moments.

#UrbanDiscovery: In July automotive and beauty bloggers met in Milan to go on a very special roadtrip.

What memories? And who are “we”? The answer, in this instance, is the #UrbanDiscovery roadtrip and a collection of unique individuals that all create memories and share them with the masses.

The #UrbanDiscovery roadtrip starts with Mercedes-Benz CLA Coupé and CLA Shooting Brake in Milan.

A special kind of road trip.

In July, a handful of beauty and automotive bloggers such as myself, Zaid Hamid – editor at GTspirit.com, gathered in Milan to embark not only a roadtrip, but a journey of creating memories and sharing moments with millions across the globe. The cars we would be using were CLA Coupé and CLA Shooting Brake – no surprise given their nimble handling traits and slender dimensions that suited #UrbanDiscovery in cities such as Milan, combined with the luxury and comfort that are desired for such long journeys.

Having greeted my fellow participants, many of whom I have previously had the pleasure of completing other MB roadtrips with, it was time to leave Milan. The city is alive, famous for its narrow streets lined with beautiful architectural marvels such as Piazza Duomo, home to a Mercedes me store, as well as dozens of fashion icons including Prada. Switzerland beckoned, more specifically, the natural beauty of the Alps.

CLA 250 Sport 4MATIC Shooting Brake: Fuel consumption combined: 6.9 l/100 km; combined CO₂ emissions: 160 g/km.*

Driving pleasure at highest level.

A couple of hours and espressi later, we crossed the Swiss border. Immediately the scenery became more dramatic. As we peeled off the smooth silk of the tarmac and started to ascend up steep narrow mountain passes, the car started to prove just how well it could handle hairpins and harsh gradients as well as it did pot holes and parallel parking in an urban environment. The prescribed route was astonishing, the views were unbelievable, complimented by waterfalls and dramatic jagged cliff faces.

Stopping for lunch under the immense heat of the sun still taken aback by the views and the competency of the CLA 250 Sport 4MATIC Shooting Brake, it became apparent that this was not a day that I would forget anytime soon. However much I would have liked to dwell on the contrast of the day’s scenery and sip Swiss apple juice, we had another country to reach before the day was done – France.

With the remarkably refined CLA 250 4MATIC you reach the French border very quick.

Brilliant car for a road trip.

Just a couple of hundred kilometres away was the French border which was a breeze to reach in the remarkably refined CLA 250 4MATIC. Another great feature of the CLA, which comes courtesy of its elegant design, is the absence of almost any wind noise. The sleek lines of the car result in a segment leading drag coefficient that allows the car to cut through the air when cruising. Paired with the quality of the cabin and technology such as DISTRONIC PLUS cruise control the CLA, once again, proved itself as a brilliant car for such a journey.

Brilliant car for a road trip.

Just a couple of hundred kilometres away was the French border which was a breeze to reach in the remarkably refined CLA 250 4MATIC. Another great feature of the CLA, which comes courtesy of its elegant design, is the absence of almost any wind noise. The sleek lines of the car result in a segment leading drag coefficient that allows the car to cut through the air when cruising. Paired with the quality of the cabin and technology such as DISTRONIC PLUS cruise control the CLA, once again, proved itself as a brilliant car for such a journey.

With the remarkably refined CLA 250 4MATIC you reach the French border very quick.

Cappuccino, cheese and lots of hp.

Milan seemed a distant memory as we entered the third country of the day. Gelato and Cappuccino had been swapped for cheese and baguettes as we neared our destination for the evening, Beaune. Having arrived in the capital of the Burgundy region ahead of schedule, we had the opportunity to explore the walled town famous for its wineries and 15th century architecture. In the evening we were joined by a special guest, a futurist and specialist in luxury, who discussed with us how the concept of luxury changed in the past and how Mercedes-Benz anticipates the perception of luxury in the future.

Ice cream, cappuccino, cheese and lots of hp. On the way to Beaune with the CLA 250 4MATIC.
If ever a car could be said to be wearing a tuxedo, it would be the CLA Shooting Brake.

All’s well that ends well.

All good things must come to an end and #UrbanDiscovery was a very good thing. I was somewhat looking forward to the final evening of the roadtrip as the destination was, like the city where we had started our journey, a fashion capital and icon of the world – Paris. Travelling from the south to almost northern France would be the longest leg of the trip. As a result, I opted to swap the matte silver CLA for a smart looking CLA Shooting Brake. If ever a car could be said to be wearing a tuxedo, this would be it. The added space of the Shooting Brake was a very welcome addition, the CLA has a reasonable amount of rear space, but the Shooting Brake had that little bit more … that I immediately filled with chocolate bars and fizzy drinks – road trip fuel.

Paris is a city that is constantly buzzing. They say New York is the city that never sleeps but Paris is not far off. In such a busy city, it was great to see that the sharp lines and unique design of the CLA and CLA Shooting Brake still managed to turn heads. Past Louis Vuitton and Goyard stores, the CLA felt at home in such esteemed company.

Memories for life.

From one urban environment to another, across three countries with dozens of coffees in between, the CLA never felt out of its depth. We discovered corners of Milan that I had never previously seen, then climbed up and back down then Alps onto endless highways and into yet another urban environment with such ease and enjoyment.

It was here at the final destination for the cars that #UrbanDiscovery began to mean something to me as a participant. Many reels of memories will continue to play in my mind for years to come. Behind each one I will remember that the Mercedes-Benz CLA made it all possible.

Memories for life – The Mercedes-Benz CLA was there to make it all possible.

All statements in this article are personal opinions and impressions of the respective author and not those of the Daimler AG.

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