We knew it was coming, but now it’s official – this is the Mercedes GLA 45 AMG, revealed at the 2014 Detroit Motor Show.
When it goes on sale in the UK in June, it’ll cost around £43,000, the same price as its only rival, the Audi RS Q3.
a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine developing an impressive 355bhp and 450Nm of torque – bettering the Audi’s 2.5-litre five-cylinder by 49bhp and 30Nm respectively.
Power is sent to all four wheels via an AMG-tuned, seven-speed, twin-clutch box. Launch control is standard, so the 0-62mph sprint takes just 4.8 seconds – seven-tenths quicker than the Audi, but two-tenths down on its A45 and CLA 45 sister models. The GLA’s top speed is limited to 155mph.
The Merc’s engine is also cleaner, returning a claimed 37.6mpg and emitting 175g/km of CO2, versus 32.1mpg and 206g/km for the hot Audi.
As well as a power upgrade, the GLA’s chassis has been retuned, with stiffer sports suspension, thicker anti-roll bars and revised steering calibration all included. A high-performance braking system has been added, and 19-inch alloys are standard.
Other exterior styling touches include a redesigned front grille, chunkier bumpers, a sports exhaust and ‘TURBO AMG’ badging. Inside are supportive sports seats and AMG instruments, including a lap timer.
If you fancy making your GLA 45 stand out from the crowd, Mercedes will offer a whole host of options so you can make your car look like the Concept GLA 45 AMG that was shown at the LA Motor Show last year.
These add-ons include bright decals, a huge carbon fibre rear wing, bigger alloys and carbon fibre turning vanes for the front bumper. Red-painted brake calipers are also on the options list.
A Night Package will be available, which swaps chrome exterior trim for black, while a full carbon fibre package for the interior will also be available.
The GLA 45 will be available to order in June, with the first cars arriving in the UK later that same month. The standard GLA is on sale now, starting from £25,850, although the first cars don’t arrive in the UK until late June, either.