Hot new Mercedes-Benz A-Class
As statements go, Ola Källenius' (Chairman of AMG) revelation that the new A 45 AMG will have the highest specific output of any manufacturer's mainstream engine is an interesting one. What it means is that AMG is planning to extract more than 325hp from an all-new 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol unit, making the A 45 AMG the most powerful car in its class.
Along with variable four-wheel drive, 'considerably' more than 400Nm of torque from only 2,000rpm and an all-new seven-speed Multi Clutch Transmission (MCT), there should be no doubt that this new A-Class will be a proper AMG car. You'd have to go back to the 190E from the eighties to find another bona fide four-cylinder AMG model, but it was an obvious choice for the firm. Space beneath the A-Class' low bonnet was already tight, and with the Group's strict CO2 and fuel economy targets needing to be met, the possibility of a V6 was quickly dismissed.
It's no ordinary inline four though, with the aluminium sandcast to cope with high pressures and the crank, pistons and conrods all specially designed and engineered for the application. And of course all units are hand-built at the firm's Affalterbach headquarters.
The massive Borg Warner turbo uses twin-scroll technology and an innovative system that sees the engine partially over-fuel to spin the turbine faster - in a bid to reduce lag. Launch control, combined with the variable four-wheel drive, should see the car sprint from 0-100km/h in less than five seconds onto an electronically limited 250km/h top speed. Prices are yet to be released.
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