Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG (2015 - 2018) review - engine and gearbox

Dramatic performance and plenty of grip for AMG's smallest offering, but you can find more fun for less money elsewhere

Evo rating
Price
from £41,830
  • Blisteringly quick everywhere
  • Not as rewarding as some slower rivals

Engine and gearbox

It’s hard not to be impressed with the power AMG’s engineers have managed to extract from a mere 2.0-litres of capacity, even with turbocharging. 376bhp is a lot of power by anyone’s standards, let alone that of similarly-sized cars, and with a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and docile responses at low speeds it’s as easy to drive as an entry-level Mercedes A180. Sending power through all four wheels as part of a 4MATIC all-wheel drive system, the A45’s reserves of traction are never in doubt.

Importantly, it’s also a ‘proper’ AMG. Just like other models so-badged, the A45’s engine is hand-assembled by one person from start to finish. Such a procedure was always a highlight of older AMGs, but it’s somehow more impressive still with the A45, given the comparably huge numbers the smaller car sells in.

The A45’s headline power output is developed at 6000rpm, with 350lb ft of torque on offer on a 2250-5000rpm plateau. Some may point out that Mitsubishi once produced Lancer Evolutions with greater specific outputs, but realistically the cars are beyond comparison - the AMG not only produces impressive power, but does so with a three-year warranty, 12,500-mile service intervals, and combined economy of 40.9mpg - figures in the 30s are entirely realistic.

Most Popular

Audi RS4 and RS5 Competition revealed – key chassis upgrades for Audi Sport’s BMW M3 rival
Audi RS4 Avant – front quarter
Audi RS4

Audi RS4 and RS5 Competition revealed – key chassis upgrades for Audi Sport’s BMW M3 rival

RS4 Avant and RS5 Coupe and Sportback soon to be available with limited-build Competition packs
17 May 2022
Viritech Apricale – deep dive on the first hydrogen-powered hypercar
Viritech Apricale
car technology

Viritech Apricale – deep dive on the first hydrogen-powered hypercar

This is not another heavyweight battery-electric hypercar, rather it’s a showcase for a new hydrogen fuel-cell technology that can deliver 1200bhp in …
18 May 2022
McLaren 600LT v Porsche 911 GT3 v Nissan GT-R Nismo
McLaren 600LT v Porsche 911 GT3 v Nissan GT-R Nismo
Supercars

McLaren 600LT v Porsche 911 GT3 v Nissan GT-R Nismo

What will it take to expose any weaknesses in the new 911 GT3? Nissan’s brutal GT-R Nismo and McLaren’s ballistic 600LT should have the power and poli…
14 May 2022