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Car and Driver: Extra, Extra: Which Vehicle Models Get Fitted With the Most Options?

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2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA250 4MATIC

2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA250 4MATIC

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From the February 2016 issue
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When Mercedes-Benz brought out the CLA compact sedan for 2014, the company made a lot of fuss about how buyers could now get a sparkly new Mercedes for less than $30,000!* (*Not including the destination and delivery charge, natch.)

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But nobody was buying CLAs for even the $30,825 that a base model really cost. Optional powertrains, trim packages, and other extras are a tractor beam moving transaction prices further and further from the advertised base price. Last year, the CLA left dealer lots at an average price of $37,786. We got curious: Which other cars were also carrying big upcharges? With help from price-information clearinghouse TrueCar, we compiled a list of the car lines whose average transaction prices exceed their root car’s base price by the greatest margins. Then, because the top of the list heavily favored specific vehicle types [see “For Work and Play,” above right], we sorted the data by vehicle class. These are presumably the mainstream biz’s biggest money makers:

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Extra Extra

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For Work and Play

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By far, pickups and sports cars average the heartiest option bills. Here, a snapshot of the 20 highest average transaction prices relative to base MSRP by vehicle type:

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For Work and Play

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