Merc’s smallest AMG model packs a mean punch. Forbidden fruit at its finest.
The Mercedes-Benz A-Class is not something most Americans are familiar with, but the latest generation has evolved into a very capable premium hatchback and seeing as it will form the basis for a number of upcoming models we will get, such as the new CLA-class sedan, it is definitely worth a look.
The hottest version so far is the AMG A35 4Matic, revealed online just ahead of the Paris Motor Show it is now finally on display at the event.
This is the first of the AMG-fettled A-Class variant and comes kitted out with an aggressive front grille, larger wheels and a big rear wing that gives it a far sportier look than the Golf R and Audi RS3 that it will be going up against.
Under the hood is a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four engine putting down 302 horsepower and 295 lb ft of torque to all four wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. Performance figures are very impressive for what is essentially an entry-level AMG model, the 0-62 mph time is dispatched in 4.7-seconds and the top speed is limited to the usual 155 mph.
The brakes and suspension have been uprated to cope with the additional power and the driver-selectable modes come with the usual settings as well as one marked 'slippery' which smooths out the power delivery and gearchanges to keep the car stable in less than ideal road conditions.
The interior is much the same as the rest of the A-Class range which is a good thing, there are some unique AMG touches such as the sportier front seats and trim details while the MBUX widescreen infotainment system dominates the view ahead of the driver.
There is no word yet on pricing but European customers will be able to order their AMG A35 later this month with deliveries scheduled for January 2019.