No one ever said that the outgoing A45 AMG was slow with 355hp (360PS) and a 0-100km/h (62mph) time of 4.3 sec, but Mercedes never liked the fact that Audi's RS3 was slightly more powerful and faster.
Stuttgart's engineers went back to the drawing board and with the 2016MY facelift for the entire range of the A-Class hatch, they presented an updated A45 AMG 4MATIC that takes back the title of the "most powerful compact performance model" in the world.
"We never rest on our laurels, but constantly strive to develop our products further," said Tobias Moers, Chairman of Mercedes-AMG GmbH. "The A 45 still had so much improvement potential that we felt compelled to realise it to the full. Our brand claim simply obliges us to."
Thanks to a newly configured valve assembly and by reconfiguring timing and turbocharging to optimize the combustion process, AMG engineers managed to harness another 21-horses from the 2.0-liter force-fed four, pushing output from 355hp (361PS) and 450Nm (332 lb-ft) to 376hp (381PS) and 475Nm (350 lb-ft) respectively.
The new A45 AMG completes the benchmark sprint to 100km/h (62mph) in 4.2 seconds, which is 0.1 second faster than the RS3 Sportback, and 0.4 seconds faster than the outgoing A45 AMG, yet fuel consumption has been kept at the previous levels at 6.9l/100km (34.0 mpg US / 40.9mpg UK that corresponds to 162 g/km CO2. Top speed is once again limited to 250km/h (155mph).
Mercedes also revised the 7-speed dual-clutch transmission with shorter ratios in 3rd to 7th and new software, while adding a new AMG Dynamic Plus package that includes a newly developed, mechanical front axle locking differential to "significantly" improve traction.
The AMG model is equipped with the adaptive damping system DYNAMIC SELECT that has four driving modes: "Comfort", "Sport", "Sport +" and "Individual", with the latter allowing the driver to preset the handling characteristics according to personal preferences or the driving situation.
Mercedes improved the A45's aerodynamics too through a new front bumper that gets a new front skirt and canards, a revised rear bumper with four vertical fins, and a new roof spoiler, while other changes on the outside include the new LED headlamps with "eyebrows" as daytime running lights.
Inside, there's a new multifunction sport steering wheel with a flattened lower section, sport seats with cushion depth adjustment as standard, a new instrument binnacle and an updated infotainment system.
The facelifted A45 AMG will go on sale in Europe this September.
We should note that according to a leaked brochure shot that was spot on the technical specs for the base A45, Mercedes plans included an even more powerful "S" version of the 2016MY with 400PS (395hp), and while nothing was mentioned today, we wouldn't be surprised if it comes out later on.