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The long-wheelbase variant has been developed exclusively for the Chinese market.

Mercedes-Benz has revealed the A-Class L, a stretched variant that makes its debut ahead of the standard-wheelbase edition.

When viewed from the front, the 'notchback' sedan closely matches the redesigned A-Class hatchback that recently debuted in Geneva. The long-wheelbase sedan provides much more room for rear-seat passengers, however, catering to Chinese buyers who prefer to be chauffeured.

The A-Class L wheelbase is nearly 2.5 inches longer than the hatchback, maximizing rear knee-room, while the roofline does not follow the CLA's steep rearward slope.

"With our Chinese customers' wishes and needs in mind, we developed the A?Class L Sedan for the local market, which is the first and only long wheelbase model in the premium compact car segment," says Daimler's China head, Hubertus Troska.

The China-exclusive A-Class L previews the appearance of the short-wheelbase model, which will be available in Sedan and Sport Sedan versions. The latter will be visually distinguished by power domes on the hood.

The shorter A-Class is said to be on track to launch in the second half of the year.