A warm welcome to the Mercedes-AMG A45 S a.k.a. the cars that well-heeled bengs have migrated to now that the Evo is no longer with us. Seriously though, it’s the new range-topper in Mercedes’ A-Class lineup and easily one of the wildest hot hatches you can buy today. In fact, it boasts the most powerful production four-cylinder engine ever.
Before we talk about the engine, let’s go through what else is new. The standard A-Class bodyshell has been strengthened while front and rear tracks have been widened to accommodate bigger rubber and larger brakes. If you really want to stand out, you can also spec it with a rear wing. Notice also the larger tailpipes for more noise.
Inside, the A45 S is suitably high-tech. It features Mercedes’ new MBUX infotainment system which eschews traditional analog dials and instead uses dual 10.25-inch digital displays powered by NVIDIA. There's also a USB-C port in the center armrest for charging your mobile devices, which probably also means you'll need a new charging cable or at least a USB-C to USB-A adapter.
The engine is codenamed M139 and produces a whopping 416hp and 500nm of torque. To produce this much power from a small engine, the turbo is nestled against the firewall to reduce pipework. It also has enlarged exhaust valves and ports, direct fuel injection, and nanoslide-coated cylinder bores. Each engine is assembled from start to finish by a single technician.
Performance is naturally astonishing. 0-100km/h takes just 3.9 seconds. To put that number into perspective, that’s as quick as the legendary Ferrari F40 and Porsche 959. Top speed is limited to 280km/h.
And if you want to go sideways, the A45 S also features a Drift Mode. In this mode, clutch packs integrated into the rear differential overspeeds the rear wheels to break traction, helping you live out your Ken Block fantasies. Unfortunately, all these goodies won't come cheap. Expect the A45 S to cost over S$300,000 when it becomes available.