THE vaunted AMG badge is set to become even more accessible, with AMG chief Tobias Moers confirming the Affalterbach-based performance arm of Mercedes-Benz is preparing a set of lower-cost, lower-output companions for its A45, CLA45 and GLA45 models.
Expected to wear a -35 suffix, these cars will follow the template set by the recently-arrived C43 and E43 by trading outright performance for a more affordable price point – yet still rock bona-fide AMG DNA. Precisely how many kilowatts they’ll have is still secret, but expect output to fall somewhere between the current-gen A250 Sport’s 160kW output and the A45’s rip-snorting 280kW.
Like the C43 and E43, the A35’s 4Matic drivetrain, suspension, exhaust and brake package will also receive the AMG treatment. It won’t be as extreme as the -45, but it apparently won’t be wanting for bark either. If you thought the A250 Sport was too gentle, the A35 should satisfy.
The expanded AMG A-series family will roll into showrooms when the line-up changes over to the new MFA2 architecture - the next evolution of the platform that underpins the current range. There will, however, be a wait.
Benz has already previewed the next A-Class in the form of the Concept A sedan (above) which debuted at the Shanghai motor show in April, but production versions of the new A-Class hatch won’t start rolling onto Australian soil until late 2018.
The sedan will likely wait until the following year, and there’s no official word on the future of the CLA either.
As for power outputs for the A35, we can only speculate. 220kW would be a reasonable guess - especially as the A45 looks set to breach the 300kW barrier - and allow AMG to parry the 213kW Audi S3 sedan and hatch. With the current Mercedes-AMG A45 retailing at $78,315, the incoming A35 could conceivably be priced in the same realm as the $62,900 Audi S3 as well.
“It’s still some time away before we know exact details, but it would make sense for the A-Class to follow in the steps of the C-Class with regard to offering an entry AMG below the A45,” Mercedes-Benz Australia spokesman Jerry Stamoulis told Wheels.
“However, the way the nomenclature will work and how it will all pan out is still very early to commit to.”
Expect to hear more detail of the new A35 range as its 2018 launch approaches.