MERCEDES has revealed that an AMG model with over 300hp will sit below the AMG A45, called the A35.
It’ll bridge the gap between the standard A-Class and the high-performance A45, which is due in 2019 and will have more than 400hp.
Thus, Mercedes will introduce a lower-powered model to slot in between it and the rest of the A-Class range.
With competition including the BMW M140i and Audi S3, expect the A35 to offer around 340hp. Initial images released seem to confirm that Mercedes will introduce a hybrid model into the range.
It’s expected to offer an electric range of 31 miles thanks to a 122hp 1.5-litre petrol engine and an 80hp electric motor.
Expect it to be available from the launch of the new A-Class in mid-2018.The released images show an interior that looks far more luxurious than the one in the current A-Class.
The design is similar to that of larger Mercedes models such as the E-Class. The flowing forms seemingly wrap around the driver’s seat and even entry-level cars get two digital displays on the dashboard, arranged side-by-side –one replacing the analogue dials and one for the infotainment system.
They come in three levels, with screen sizes increasing from seven to 10.25-inches. Mercedes says there’s more passenger space in the back of the new A-Class too, with more head, leg and shoulder room.
The boot opening of the older car was annoyingly narrow, and that has been resolved in the new A-Class by using different rear lights.
Boot space is up 29 litres on the old car and now sits at 370 litres –10 more than a BMW 1 Series and 10 less than an Audi A3.
Mercedes’ smallest model will offer largely the same engine choices as the outgoing car – there’ll be four-cylinder 1.6-litre and 2.0-litre petrol engines and a 1.5-litre diesel.
Although the engines are the same, they’ll produce more power and better fuel economy. A 2.0-litre diesel engine is also expected, and you’ll be able to choose from either a seven-speed dual-clutch auto or a six-speed manual gearbox.
The addition of plug-in hybrid and electric versions will be almost inevitable in the next couple of years.