Photos of the new Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG surfaced on the internet today providing us with our first camouflage-free look at the German brand's high-performance hatch, designed to challenge the 315hp (320PS) BMW M135i and 335hp (340PS) Audi RS3.
We don't have the official release in our hands yet, but Mercedes-Benz confirmed the A45 AMG's basic specifications last November.
The hottest addition to the A-Class family of hatchbacks makes do with a heavily revised version of the brand's 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four petrol rated at 350-horsepower and 332 lb-ft (450Nm) of peak torque.
An AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7-speed sports transmission with dual clutch technology transfers power to Mercedes' new 4MATIC all-wheel drive system tailored for FWD models (you can read more details here).
In addition, the automaker's engineers have tweaked the chassis of the A45 AMG that features new suspension and steering system settings and components, wider tracks, reworked electronic aids and stronger brakes.
If you're having a hard time telling the A45 AMG apart from the regular A-Class hatchbacks with the AMG Sport styling package, you're not alone, as the differences are limited to the alloy wheel design, the glossy black front lip spoiler and side trims, the twin-bar grille and the trapezoidal (instead of oval) tailpipes.
The new A45 AMG hatch will break cover at the Geneva Auto Salon next month, and while it won't be offered in North America, it's powertrain will be used in the upcoming CLA 45 AMG that will go on sale on this side of the Atlantic.
Photos: Mercedes-Benz via Autowp