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New Mercedes-AMG A35 teased before Paris debut - AMG’s direct Audi S3 rival

Mercedes-AMG will aim its new A35 AMG at the Audi S3, but don’t worry, the RS3 rivalling A45 is still on its way

Mercedes-AMG has teased the first AMG version of its all-new A-class, due to be revealed at the upcoming Paris motor show. In line with AMG’s new twin-pronged approach, the next AMG A-class will be available in two flavours, this A35 is the milder version before a significantly hotter A45 replacement arrives in 2019.

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Noted for its aggressively tuned turbocharged four-cylinder engine and hardcore demeanor, the previous Mercedes-AMG A45 was a bit of a brute on the road, and lacked the wider appeal of more accessible, and crucially cheaper rivals like the VW Golf R and Audi S3. So it’s those hot hatches that AMG is now directly targeting, with this new circa-300bhp A35.

> Click here for our review of the Audi RS3

As seen in these pictures, the design is predictably familiar, adding the usual array of subtle AMG design cues to the new A-class’ distinctive body. Changes at the front appear to include a redesigned front apron and grille with AMG’s distinctive double-bar design. The rear apron is also familiar, but with new exhaust tips and an AMG badge on the tailgate. Also obvious in this new model is this car’s stacked rear wing and front bumper-mounted dive planes, both of which will likely be available on an optional aero package, much like the current A45.

The new A35 will be based on the all-new A-Class, with power expected to come from a revised version of the previous A45’s turbocharged 2-litre four-cylinder engine, mated to a dual-clutch gearbox and 4matic all-wheel drive. As previously mentioned, its power output is likely to hover around the 300bhp mark, keeping it in line with the S3 and Golf R.

The new A-class’ more rigid chassis should provide a better basis for tuning the A35’s suspension, not to mention the standard car’s wider tracks and lower centre of gravity. But as the A35 is not the performance flagship of the A-class range, we’re expecting a slightly more subtle set-up, with slightly softer and more approachable demeanor.

We’re also expecting the usual AMG upgrades inside, made up of colour coded stitching, sports seats and a new AMG steering wheel building on the A-class’ techy, modern interior. 

Due for its full reveal at the 2018 Paris motor show, it’ll soon be followed up by a new A45 model, which we’re expecting will break the 400bhp barrier and in the process retaking its crown as the most powerful hot hatch on sale from the Audi RS3.  

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