AMG builds some of the most special Mercedes-Benz models on the planet. In 2017 the two companies are set to mark 50 years of high-performance, high-profile partnership by way of completing an 18-model lineup of their finest produce.
The introductions have started last year, and among the latest unveiled were the Mercedes-Benz A 45 AMG and the CLA 45 AMG. Last week, the distributor of the brand in the Philippines, CATS Motors Inc., pulled the covers off these exact models to shout out their arrival in the country.
Among the littlest in the AMG litter, the 45 pair promises the same potent performance the brand has been known for for nearly half a century but comes in a new package that’s aimed at a younger set. The cars, according to CATS Motors President Felix Ang, “provide an exciting introduction to the world of AMG.”
The A 45 AMG and CLA 45 AMG buck tradition by arriving with four-pot engines—the first of such type to wear the AMG badge. Despite their “45” nomenclature, the engines actually spin out a 2.0-liter displacement, deviating from AMG’s “55” or “63” models whose number tags suggest their engine sizes (or, at least, used to). But the 45 does spew 355hp at 6,000rpm and—closer to its designation—450Nm of torque from as low as 2,250 revs. Credit to the inline-four’s output, besides that going to AMG engineers who adhere to a one-man-per-car rule when it comes to hand-building engines (which are affixed with a signed plaque of the engineer that brought it to life), rests on Mercedes-Benz’s BluDirect twin-scroll turbo and other exotic AMG bits. Mercedes said the 45’s power ratings are “unmatched by any other mass-produced turbocharged four-cylinder engine” and that its power density figure of 181hp equals that of the world’s most powerful sports cars.
Sending the grunt to the cars’ AMG 4Matic all-wheel drive train is the brand’s SpeedShift DCT seven-speed automatic transmission that can be rowed through via paddles on the steering wheel.
Oh, and what grunt. Both the A 45 AMG and the CLA 45 AMG can sprint from naught to 100kph in 4.6 seconds and on to a top speed of 270kph. Despite such heady numbers, Mercedes-Benz rated the cars’ fuel consumption at 6.9 liters of gasoline for every 100 kilometers travelled—segment-leading, according to the carmaker.
As members of the three-pointed star stable, the cars mix high levels of craftsmanship and individuality with potent power. Mercedes-Benz said the younger set of buyers that the A 45 AMG—a hatchback—will attract are urbane while those likely to be drawn toward the CLA 45 AMG—a four-door sedan—add “tech-savvy” and a “flexible attitude to life” to their profile.
The two cars’ arrival in the Philippines throws a spotlight on programs like the AMG Driving Academy and AMG Private Lounge. Mercedes-Benz explained that the former offers training courses and events at racetracks around the globe where people can hone their skills aboard AMGs from race drivers like Bernd Schneider, Karl Wendlinger and Bernd Mayländer. The latter is a marketing pitch targeted at AMG owners who are interested in accessing AMG stuff like articles, pictures, videos and membership into the brand’s official online community—an entry into the high-performance world of AMG, in short.