The second generation A-Class, the W169, was unveiled at Mercedes' Stuttgart factory on June 28, 2004 and was available from early September. It has been designed according to Mercedes-Benz concept of 'Touch And Feel' (TAF). The multi-function steering wheel features controls for the radio, telephone, and other systems, which are accessible to the driver from the thumbs. All models come fitted with power steering, and the behaviour of the car varies according to its speed.
The car can be specified with optional Mercedes COMAND APS navigation system which gives directions via SMS, whilst the radio unit also provides DVD and telephone functionality, with various versions available (standard Audio 20 radio/single CD, Audio 50 APS or COMAND APS). Parktronic can be fitted, which provides audio and visual signals to indicate the distance from an obstacle.
A "Light & Sight" package is available, encompassing bi-xenon HID headlamps with gas-discharge bulbs; cornering lights (main-beam headlamps at road junctions and tight corners); "Headlamp Assist, which automatically turns on the lights when needed; and a rain sensor that adjusts wiper speed depending on rainfall intensity. Also, when entering a tunnel or an underground garage the car automatically goes into "tunnel mode", with all windows and the panoramic sliding sunroof being closed.
The standard temperature control system provides separate temperature settings for driver and front passenger sides, and includes a "Heater Booster System" that can fill the interior of the car with hot air.
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