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The Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG is like forbidden fruit here in the U.S. Yes, we get its sibling, the equally powerful CLA45 AMG, but there’s something about a 355-horsepower hot hatch that just feels so right. Of course, Mercedes-Benz isn’t alone in playing “keep away” with muscle-bound hatchbacks from America; Audi keeps its RS3 Sportback off our roads too.

With those grievances laid out, Mercedes-Benz has updated its A Class for 2016, and turned up the heat on its A45 AMG to new levels. Instead of 355 HP, the face-lifted version now makes 376 HP and 351 pound-feet of torque. With a 21 HP and 18 lb-ft of torque bump over the current generation, the 2016 A45 AMG moves past the new Audi RS3’s 362 HP and regains the title of most powerful production hatchback. Its turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder doesn’t have an equal in the market right now.

Performance figures have been improved accordingly. Zero to 60 mph takes just 4.2 seconds now, an improvement of 0.4 seconds, while top speed remains limited at 155 mph. It’s not just the extra power that has helped its acceleration; the seven-speed dual clutch automatic transmission has been retuned for quicker shifts and shorter gear ratios.

A new Dynamic Plus Package adds a mechanical front-axle locking differential and AMG Ride Control sport suspension with two-stage adaptive damping. Also new for 2016 are driving modes: comfort, sport, sport +, and individual modes.

Styling tweaks are minimal, including a revised front fascia, standard diamond grill, LED headlights, and new graphics. Inside, the infotainment system has been increased to an 8.0-inch display with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality.




If 376 HP just isn’t enough for you, an AMG S version is reportedly in the works with almost 400 HP. No doubt, Mercedes-Benz is putting on a strong front for incoming rivals like the Ford Focus RS and Volkswagen Golf R400. And while its absolute torture to only be able to hear about these super-powered hot hatches for the European market, I still firmly support these activities.

The 2016 A Class goes on sale July 3 with deliveries starting in September.
 

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The Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG is like forbidden fruit here in the U.S. Yes, we get its sibling, the equally powerful CLA45 AMG, but there’s something about a 355-horsepower hot hatch that just feels so right. Of course, Mercedes-Benz isn’t alone in playing “keep away” with muscle-bound hatchbacks from America; Audi keeps its RS3 Sportback off our roads too.

With those grievances laid out, Mercedes-Benz has updated its A Class for 2016, and turned up the heat on its A45 AMG to new levels. Instead of 355 HP, the face-lifted version now makes 376 HP and 351 pound-feet of torque. With a 21 HP and 18 lb-ft of torque bump over the current generation, the 2016 A45 AMG moves past the new Audi RS3’s 362 HP and regains the title of most powerful production hatchback. Its turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder doesn’t have an equal in the market right now.

Performance figures have been improved accordingly. Zero to 60 mph takes just 4.2 seconds now, an improvement of 0.4 seconds, while top speed remains limited at 155 mph. It’s not just the extra power that has helped its acceleration; the seven-speed dual clutch automatic transmission has been retuned for quicker shifts and shorter gear ratios.

A new Dynamic Plus Package adds a mechanical front-axle locking differential and AMG Ride Control sport suspension with two-stage adaptive damping. Also new for 2016 are driving modes: comfort, sport, sport +, and individual modes.

Styling tweaks are minimal, including a revised front fascia, standard diamond grill, LED headlights, and new graphics. Inside, the infotainment system has been increased to an 8.0-inch display with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality.




If 376 HP just isn’t enough for you, an AMG S version is reportedly in the works with almost 400 HP. No doubt, Mercedes-Benz is putting on a strong front for incoming rivals like the Ford Focus RS and Volkswagen Golf R400. And while its absolute torture to only be able to hear about these super-powered hot hatches for the European market, I still firmly support these activities.

The 2016 A Class goes on sale July 3 with deliveries starting in September.


Been in North America now for over 25 years and still can't understand the NA mentality when it comes to not accepting the design etc of the small European models, many of which would leave half of the big muscle cars in their wake. Is there a restriction on import numbers etc? or is it that the European manufactures look at the market and guesstimate that there won't be enough sales for a particular model?
 

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Hot hatches seem to be a particularly European thing - although I guess there are some Japanese ones too. What is it about them that doesn't appeal to the USA? That said looks like the USA will get the RS3 in Saloon form - wish that was coming to the UK.

Four of the newest hot hatches went up the hill at Goodwood Festival of Speed last weekend - the Mercedes, the Audi RS 3, the Ford RS Focus and the Honda Civic Type R. And the R400 was on the Volkswagen stand. Mercedes didn't take long to trump Audi power wise.
 

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Hot hatches seem to be a particularly European thing - although I guess there are some Japanese ones too. What is it about them that doesn't appeal to the USA? That said looks like the USA will get the RS3 in Saloon form - wish that was coming to the UK.

Four of the newest hot hatches went up the hill at Goodwood Festival of Speed last weekend - the Mercedes, the Audi RS 3, the Ford RS Focus and the Honda Civic Type R. And the R400 was on the Volkswagen stand. Mercedes didn't take long to trump Audi power wise.

Perhaps some of our US members can answer that question but I think that as a NA car buyer you tend to be situated in 3 camps..GM, Ford, Chrysler gradually the imports are making in roads into the younger NA market when it comes to cars, however I would suggest that given the demographics over here the Truck and SUV market must have the bigger share of the market...I think the F150 sells a truck every couple of minutes! and that is a market not yet entered by the Euro makers although I read on this forum that MB are building a truck so I guess will be see how that goes.
 
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