Mercedes-Benz has revealed how much its new 'baby CLS' is going to cost when it goes on sale here in early November.

However, the sleek, low-slung metal that adorns the company's first-ever front-wheel drive sedan comes at a premium:

THE BILL

CLA180 - R348 700

CLA200 - R372 700

CLA220 CDI - R397 600

CLA45 AMG - R674 400

GENEROUS SIZE

So yes, it costs somewhat more than the new A-Class, which starts at R275 257 in A180 form. Yet although the CLA shares its platform with the A-Class, it's worth noting that the CLA is somewhat larger - slightly larger than the C-Class, in fact.

Where would this leave the C then? Well, word on the street is that the next generation of Merc's smallest rear-driven sedan, due next year, will undergo something of a growth spurt.

Back to the CLA, the initial South African range offers four models, kicking off with two turbopetrol models powered by a 1.6-litre engine. When beneath the bonnet of the CLA180, it's tuned to produced 90kW and 200Nm, while the 200 models are good for 115kW and 250Nm.

Topping the 'sensible' range for now is a 2143cc turbodiesel model (CLA220 CDI), credited with 125kW, 350Nm and a combined-cycle consumption figure of 4.5 litres per 100km.

The big gun, of course, wears an AMG badge and has 265 killer-watts to share between all four wheels.

We've just driven this mini-monster on its international launch and you'll see our impressions on the site later on Thursday.