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Thursday 28th March 2013

Mercedes CLA45 AMG: New York Motor Show

Can't take the idea of an AMG hot hatch? Try the A45-based 'baby CLS' CLA45 AMG instead...



The new A45 AMG is a big step for Mercedes' performance brand and if you can't quite stomach the thought of a hot hatch here's the coupe/saloon version, the CLA45 AMG making its debut here at the New York show.

One exhaust pipe per cylinder for CLA45
One exhaust pipe per cylinder for CLA45
We knew it was coming of course, AMG development man Tobias Moers confirming as much as he talked us round the A45 at Geneva but New York is an earlier debut for the hot version of the CLA than we expected. And, yes, it's basically a shrunken CLS AMG. With a four-cylinder turbocharged engine and four-wheel drive of course.

Like the A45, the CLA45 gets a 360hp turbo four-cylinder built under AMG's 'one man, one engine' policy and driving through a Haldex style four-wheel drive chassis. As previously described, AMG is confident it's got around the 'reactive' style of power distribution usually associated with such systems and Moers and his team has been working hard to ensure the kind of response and, yes, sideways ability for which AMGs are known. Up to a point of course.

Halving the traditional cylinder count is a huge emotional leap for AMG of course, the seven-speed dual-clutch transmission at least less of a question mark for a brand that's only ever offered self shifters. Downsizing it may be but if lacking in displacement the new engine hits back with an astounding 180hp per litre specific output, 0-62mph coming up in 4.6 seconds and top speed limited to 155mph. With, of course, 39.7mpg and CO2 of 165g/km.

Squint hard and it could be a CLS63...
Squint hard and it could be a CLS63...
In the flesh the AMG additions - traditional quad exhausts included - bulk out the slightly under-wheeled lines of the base CLA and as conventional market boundaries blur and the tuning division breaks into new sectors the CLA45 is the car to do it, especially in a market where hot hatches are still a novelty. Will American AMG customers buy into turbo four-cylinder saloons though? Stateside AMG product manager Rob Moran says yes, the sub-$50,000 price point at least $10,000 less than the existing 'entry level' to the brand, the C63. And accessibility to an AMG for a new, younger wave of customers is, reckons Mercedes, the way to guarantee a steady flow of customers further up the range into the V8 cars.

Dan Trent
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911F

Original Poster:

2,806 posts

76 months

[news] 
Wednesday 27th March 2013 quote quote all
I'm sure this has been answered before.

Why is it A '45'

Why not A35 or A40 or A43? or even A36

A3tdi

268 posts

69 months

[news] 
Wednesday 27th March 2013 quote quote all
911F said:
I'm sure this has been answered before.

Why is it A '45'

Why not A35 or A40 or A43? or even A36
I would assume its for Marketing purposes.

Sub5s

65 posts

39 months

[news] 
Wednesday 27th March 2013 quote quote all
45 years AMG

Amirhussain

8,102 posts

49 months

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Wednesday 27th March 2013 quote quote all
Just those rear lights I don't like. They look like their melting.

Jakestar

354 posts

77 months

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Wednesday 27th March 2013 quote quote all
I miss the time where the number actually meant something about the engine..
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breadvan

381 posts

54 months

[news] 
Wednesday 27th March 2013 quote quote all
I miss the time where the number actually meant something about the fuel efficiency..

bobberz

1,743 posts

85 months

[news] 
Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
Didn't know they were going to sell it in the U.S., especially since we don't get the A class here. Seems like it could be a very interesting car, though I'm still partial to the traditional AMG V8 noise.

What does that specific output relate to? Is must be pretty high up there among the list of production cars. I mean, 180bhp/litre, isn't that superbike territory? I'd like to know how that compares to sports/supercars.

neiljohnson

10,892 posts

93 months

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Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
A car for me in the future I think but I can't afford one new frown

bakker110

21 posts

29 months

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Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
Equivilant of £40000 for a C63! I know its in dollars but thats so cheap!

MonteV

348 posts

146 months

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Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
AMG's "one man one engine" policy. Aston should have service marked and registered that brilliant concept. Those little brass plaques with "Bert Nash" on them certainly attracted me to the Aston brand.

Today it must be a gimmick, as everything is ruled by standardized method, and they want to remove anything that suggests statistical variation in performance due to human intervention. Now, I guess it's just the possibility to trace any mistakes made by human hands to specific individuals, although they market it as "hand made." Not a bad strategy, but it is different today from what it used to be.

If I wanted hand built I'd get my engines from either Barton or Black, BTW.

ZesPak

14,343 posts

82 months

[news] 
Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
360bhp, 39.7mpg and CO2 of 165g/km. Is there anything out there that comes close to this that isn't some sort of hybrid? eek

That's properly amazing and could make it even acceptable as a company car over here hehe

Scott_Mac

14 posts

144 months

[news] 
Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
ZesPak said:
360bhp, 39.7mpg and CO2 of 165g/km. Is there anything out there that comes close to this that isn't some sort of hybrid? eek

That's properly amazing and could make it even acceptable as a company car over here hehe
And i'm quite sure that this one won't get anywhere near the middle stat either....

As for others, BMW 335i isn't a million miles away....

ZesPak

14,343 posts

82 months

[news] 
Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
Scott_Mac said:
And i'm quite sure that this one won't get anywhere near the middle stat either....

As for others, BMW 335i isn't a million miles away....
Meh, it's the government that is concerned about those stats as a company car, not me.

As in "not a million miles away", I do hope you're not serious?
It's about 20% down on power, and 20% up in emissions.

It's a six in line and will probably be the more pleasant engine, but on paper it's totally obliterated by the Merc's engine.

hillchilly

38 posts

91 months

[news] 
Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
911F said:
I'm sure this has been answered before.

Why is it A '45'

Why not A35 or A40 or A43? or even A36
I thought Jim Clark learnt to drive properly in an A35 or am I showing my age?

Krikkit

5,144 posts

67 months

[news] 
Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
$10k more for a C63... Is that still a choice? This looks fantastic, but that's a no-brainer in a country where fuel is hilariously cheap.

loveice

355 posts

133 months

[news] 
Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
Two back seats or three?

AndrewSV

91 posts

35 months

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Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
loveice said:
Two back seats or three?
Merc call it a 2+1

ge0rge

1,299 posts

91 months

[news] 
Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
Meh, bloody haldex ruining things again !

TheOrangePeril

352 posts

66 months

[news] 
Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
911F said:
I'm sure this has been answered before.

Why is it A '45'

Why not A35 or A40 or A43? or even A36
So people don't mistake it for a baby Austin...

mackie1

7,285 posts

119 months

[news] 
Thursday 28th March 2013 quote quote all
I'm guessing the number is a proportional thing. If a 63 has 500bhp and the same ratio would give a 45 near enough 360bhp.
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