With 416 bhp on tap, the A45 could be the new king of the hot hatch scene.
There have been official teasers for the Mercedes-AMG A45 hot hatch since December, and the brand has continued to show off the model since then without revealing much about it. The latest photos appear to come from the recent promotional video showing the model sliding on the ice.
Gallery: Mercedes-AMG A45 teaser
The A45 will come standard with 382 bhp from a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder, and there will be a more potent S model with 416 bhp. Both variants use an eight-speed dual-clutch gearbox. While the A-Class rides on a front-wheel-drive focused platform, the A45's high-tech all-wheel-drive system has a Drift mode that makes the tail very easy to slide. Activating it is a little complex by requiring the driver to enter the Race mode, deactivate stability control, pull both paddles, and then pull the right one.
When you're not drifting, the all-wheel-drive system should be surefooted on the road because there's a clutch for managing the power to each wheel. The setup can send all of the output to a single corner, if necessary.
Unfortunately, there might be a whole lot more A45 teasers before the debut because current speculation puts the unveiling in September at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Sales in Europe should start before the end of the year. Americans need to be patient for the performance model since the A-Class hatch isn't available there. The high-output four-cylinder should eventually arrive in the U.S. in the CLA-Class, but sales don't seem likely to start this year.