The high-performance compact 'four-door coupe' becomes the flagship model in the recently launched Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class line-up, and offers a sedan-based alternative to the mechanically similar A45 AMG hot-hatch that’s headed our away in September.
Destined for Australian showrooms in early 2014, the Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG will carry an approximate $5000 premium over its five-door sibling, suggesting a starting price close to $80,000.
Like the A45, the Mercedes CLA45 AMG teams the most powerful series-production four-cylinder engine in the world – a turbocharged 265kW/450Nm 2.0-litre – with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic and all-wheel drive. It’s a combination that catapults the four-door from 0-100km/h in 4.6 seconds (identical to the hatch) and on to an electronically limited top speed of 250km/h.
In more relaxed driving conditions, the CLA45 AMG consumes 6.9 litres of fuel per 100km on the combined cycle (again matching the hatch) and emits an average of 161g/km CO2
The AMG SpeedShift transmission facilitates double-declutching, ‘Race Start’ launch control and features three drive modes: Controlled Efficiency, Sport and Manual.
The stability control system gives drivers more freedom to personalise the car’s set-up, offering ESP On, ESP Sport Handling and ESP Off settings.
The AMG sports suspension has been stiffened and retuned for greater agility and feedback, increased high-speed stability and control, and reducing rolling through corners.
Ventilated and perforated discs measuring 350mm at the front and 330mm at the rear are responsible for braking the CLA45 AMG. The red-calipered items sit behind 18-inch lightweight grey alloys that are shod with 235/40-profile rubber (the A45 AMG gets 19-inch alloys and 235/35-profile tyres).
Appearing almost identical to the hatch inside the cabin, expect the Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG to come standard with the COMAND online infotainment system, Harmon/Kardon stereo, leather-upholstered heated and electrically adjustable seats, as well as blind spot warning, lane departure detection, an intelligent lighting system, and front and rear parking sensors when it arrives in Australia early next year.