RE: New Mercedes-AMG A45 and CLA45 - official!

RE: New Mercedes-AMG A45 and CLA45 - official!

Thursday 4th July

New Mercedes-AMG A45 and CLA45 - official!

421hp, a drift mode, a new dual-clutch transmission and more - the AMG mega hatch is back with a vengeance



For a first effort at a hot hatch, for a first effort at a four-cylinder car no less, the original Mercedes-AMG A45 was a devastating device. Not without flaws, sure, but blessed with a great engine, superb brakes and phenomenal cross-country pace. Now we have a new one, alongside a CLA45 saloon, ready to build on the success of the old car and set a fresh precedent for what can be achieved with a series production hatchback.

The engine is of course the big news, the 2.0-litre turbo four available in two states of tune: 387hp for the standard car, and the 421hp S. Even the very slowest derivative of the new model - the base CLA45 - is capable of 0-62mph in 4.1 seconds, the A45 S carrying the honour of dipping below four seconds for the benchmark sprint. All will do 155mph; with an optional AMG Driver's Pack the standard cars will do 168mph, the top speed of the S models.


You might remember that AMG is so proud of what's been achieved with this new engine that it released all the key details recently. So if you want to swot up on the M139, its electronically controlled wastegate, Nanoslide cylinder coating and the new turbo, see here.

Paired to that mighty engine will be a new eight-speed dual-clutch transmission; the old seven-speed was never the sharpest DCT out there, so hopefully this unit can improve that. Mercedes claims it "contributes to the agile and dynamic character", with "fast shifting and optimum connections when shifting up."


Another predicted area of improvement for this range of 45s is the chassis; while tremendously able before, the old cars could feel a little one-dimensional in their handling balance. This should be improved now with the introduction of AMG Torque Control to the Performance 4Matic+ all-wheel drive. Previously power was only split front to back (and then across the front with the introduction of a limited-slip diff), but now it will be split across the rear as well. The new diff features a pair of electronically controlled multidisc clutches, each connected to a driveshaft, giving individual control of those wheels. Mercedes believes it results in "optimum traction, even in adverse road conditions and during extreme cornering manoeuvres". Speaking of which...

Both A45 and CLA45 will feature a Drift Mode (optional on the base cars; standard on the S). Given Mercedes form, we'd assume this is a system that fully decouples the front driven wheels, rather than a Focus RS-style system. One to investigate. AMG states that the system "makes powersliding possible for even more driving pleasure." Jolly good!


Keeping everything in check is a thoroughly overhauled chassis, the 45 range boasting McPherson struts at the front and a multi-link rear, both using aluminium components to reduce unsprung mass. Standard suspension is by frequency-selective damping that will provide a more comfortable ride than before (good news) as well as improved dynamism and stability owing to "perfectly coordinated" longitudinal and transverse dynamics. An optional AMG Ride Control adaptive damping system has three modes, contributing to both further improved ride comfort and agility.

Attached to that suspension, funnily enough, are the wheels and brakes. In the regular A45 and CLA45, an 18-inch wheel sits ahead of four-piston calipers and 350x34mm discs, backed up by 330x22mm rotors behind. The S cars (or base cars with the AMG Dynamic Plus box ticked) get six-piston calipers with 360x36mm discs at the front. 19-inch wheels are also standard on the S, as are red calipers, though there's no mention yet of a ceramic option.


Steering those wheels is a speed-sensitive, electro-mechanical PAS system, with two maps offering either "taut and sporty or more comfort based steering feedback." The extensive chassis stiffening (including a front shearing plate) should create a more connected feel, though it's hard to recall a car improved by steering modes - let's see.

Elsewhere it's standard new-school AMG fare: six drive modes (Slippery, Comfort, Sport+, Individual and Race, presuming it's an S, or optioned 387hp car), controlling all manner of parameters. Ready? It's powertrain (including throttle response, shift times and timing, four different engine sounds), transmission, exhaust system, chassis if the optional dampers are fitted and the AMG Dynamics. For those who've forgotten about AMG Dynamics (us included), it's described by its maker as "integrated vehicles dynamics control extends the stabilising functions of ESP with agility-enhancing intervention in the all-wheel control, steering characteristics and additional ESP functions." It can brake an inside wheel, for example, to further help agility. It works exceptionally well in the C63, so expect more of the same here; AMG Dynamics is split across four modes, roughly correlating to the drive settings: Basic, Advanced, Professional and Master.


You probably don't need us to explain the A45 and CLA45 look for a decision to be made on whether you like it or not, but there are a few worthwhile points to explain. That jazzy MBUX infotainment now features AMG specific displays (with stuff like oil temp, g-meter, race timer and so on), the S models feature yellow accents said to evoke motorsport and the AMG Performance wheel will provide the "perfect symbiosis between the driver and vehicle." Naturally, a whole host of seat, material and equipment options will be offered, but we'll come to those when prices are announced.

As before, these AMG 45 models are actually quite modest looking for the performance they boast, only differentiated from AMG Line cars with a little extra aggression in the bodykit and more prominent exhausts. However, also like the first 45s, an aero kit will be offered for those who want "optimised aerodynamic balance" ...

Sounds a pretty formidable package, then, this second generation of AMG 45. Given what Affalterbach has also done since the first car's introduction in 2013 - think turbo'd C63, AMG GT and the current E63, stunning cars all of them - there's every reason to be optimistic about this A- and CLA-Class. Still, the only proof is in the pudding (or the driving, to be strictly accurate), which will take place later this month. Stay tuned!











Author
Discussion

wab172uk

Original Poster:

1,333 posts

170 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
Once the options are ticked (if similar options to the A35) then were looking at a £60k+ Hot Hatch.

For that kind of money, I'd want more than an A-Class. No matter how fast it is.

cookington

78 posts

85 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
The new A Class is much nicer to look at with the A35 sporting things up a bit.

I was hoping the A45 and more so the CLA45 would improve on this but they do nothing for me in the pics in the article.

Onehp

1,056 posts

226 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
Looking forward to the shooting brake / estate version.

"Both A45 and CLA45 will feature a Drift Mode (optional on the base cars; standard on the S). Given Mercedes form, we'd assume this is a system that fully decouples the front driven wheels, rather than a Focus RS-style system. One to investigate."
Given the different layouts, the answer is no, I can't see how they can decouple the front only (unless using additional clutch packs again - realistically no space for that in front, although theoretically it could replace the front lsd - not been done yet). It are the rear wheels that each are 'clutched onto' the driveshaft running straight from the gearbox, instread of the fronts on FR cars. So basically it's mirroring the Focus RS system with slightly oversped gearing to give true rear end push, but hopefully with an even better calibration.

Edited by Onehp on Thursday 4th July 14:10

je777

291 posts

47 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
Instead of the typical 'phone glued to dashboard' Mercedes effect, they've gone for 'giant phone glued to dashboard'.

How are they getting away with this?

(Is it just badge snobbery? If Peugeot do this, all and sundry would - rightly - cry 'Halfords'.)

Ultrafunkula

620 posts

48 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
I think they look bang on, the CLA looks much better than it did.
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Electronicpants

1,877 posts

131 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
421 Bhp!

The German horsepower war continues, where will it end?

BMW engineers footage below after releasing the new 4 pot M135i figures. biggrin



Shiv_P

1,985 posts

48 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
421bhp........wow

Trophy Husband

1,403 posts

50 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
wab172uk said:
Once the options are ticked (if similar options to the A35) then were looking at a £60k+ Hot Hatch.

For that kind of money, I'd want more than an A-Class. No matter how fast it is.
Hang on! A 4 seater that likely may leave a 911 Carrera S for dust down the lanes? What more do you expect?
I'd have the AMG A45S in a heartbeat. Ace motor!

Edited by Trophy Husband on Thursday 4th July 14:49

cerb4.5lee

11,878 posts

123 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
I think that the A45 looks really purposeful, fast too! driving

I can almost forgive it for having only two pedals I think.

Welshbeef

36,993 posts

141 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
wab172uk said:
Once the options are ticked (if similar options to the A35) then were looking at a £60k+ Hot Hatch.

For that kind of money, I'd want more than an A-Class. No matter how fast it is.
Nearly the same BHP as the current BMW M3 (give or take) and it being AWD it will show its pace wipe it away in the real world.

Merc are storming these days just like in F1.

RudeDog

1,477 posts

117 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
This will be a nice car for the wife. Proper fast car with enough space for the kids.

Edited by topsey.mod on Thursday 4th July 20:10

mikey k

12,288 posts

159 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
wab172uk said:
Once the options are ticked (if similar options to the A35) then were looking at a £60k+ Hot Hatch.

For that kind of money, I'd want more than an A-Class. No matter how fast it is.
Yep
I was looking at the out going gen to replace an M140i but even those are crazy expensive
For the base price of one of thise you could get a used current gen C63S!

wab172uk

Original Poster:

1,333 posts

170 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
Trophy Husband said:
wab172uk said:
Once the options are ticked (if similar options to the A35) then were looking at a £60k+ Hot Hatch.

For that kind of money, I'd want more than an A-Class. No matter how fast it is.
Hang on! A 4 seater that likely may leave a 911 Carrera S for dust down the lanes? What more do you expect?
I'd have the AMG A45S in a heartbeat. Ace motor!

Edited by Trophy Husband on Thursday 4th July 14:49
That's my point though. If `I` were spending £60k on a car, I'd want something more `special` than an A-Class. For me, I'd rather spend that amount of money on a second hand 911 (yes I know New V Old debate is wrong) and enjoy the car and the specialness of it every time I drove it.

More to life than 0-60 times

Now if the A45 was in the £40k bracket fully loaded? Then it make more sense.

Again, If I was to buy an A-Class, (money aside) I'd honestly choose the A35 AMG over the A45 AMG.

Welshbeef

36,993 posts

141 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
mikey k said:
Yep
I was looking at the out going gen to replace an M140i but even those are crazy expensive
For the base price of one of thise you could get a used current gen C63S!
I wonder what a 316D could be specd to for maximum cost we could then probably say by C7 RS6 for the same if not less

Onehp

1,056 posts

226 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
One point missed is that a transverse 420hp four pot 4wd is rougly 250-300kg lighter than the same car (interior space) with longitudinal engined 4wd layout. Being heavier, it then needs a bigger engine and almost 500hp to keep power to weight intact...

NicoG

516 posts

151 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
is there some new EU legislation that I have missed that stipulates all new cars must have (mainly) black wheels?

NicoG

516 posts

151 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
wab172uk said:
Again, If I was to buy an A-Class, (money aside) I'd honestly choose the A35 AMG over the A45 AMG.
me too - the A35 looks like a very good value package and does nearly everything this A45 does.
Quality interior (notwithstanding extensive iPad use), 40 MPG, seat 4, and pretty rapid.

Is half a second less to 60 really worthy £25K in the same car? Not to me it isn't
It's all become a bit of a spec-sheet pissing contest hasn't it....

Jon_S_Rally

418 posts

31 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
It may be fast, but it's still ugly as sin in hatchback form.

The CLA looks better, though I still think I prefer the A saloon. Sadly, the interior of all of them is gross. And the yellow accents on the S make it look like it's worth about a quid.

Not for me this one. Mercs are a bit tasteless these days.

Onehp

1,056 posts

226 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
NicoG said:
Is half a second less to 60 really worthy £25K in the same car? Not to me it isn't
It's all become a bit of a spec-sheet pissing contest hasn't it....
Bit unfair, the chassis and drivetrain are suitably different and should appeal to driving enthusiast. It's the main reason I'm paying attention, there aren't (m)any practical (estate) cars with 4wd that are proper dynamic and that don't weigh 1900kg+. If that doesn't interest, well then basically most cars other than the base Skoda's and Fords, and Dacias, are in some kind of pissing contest...

Greenmantle

418 posts

51 months

Thursday 4th July
quotequote all
Is it false exhaust tips again!