The 2019 Mercedes-AMG A35 Is 306 Horsepower of Hot Hatch Fun

Don't expect it to come to the US anytime soon, though.

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Mercedes-Benz

Ever since Mercedes-Benz revealed the new A-Class hatch earlier this year, we've been patiently waiting to lay our eyes on the hotted-up AMG version. Now, that day has finally come. Meet the 2019 Mercedes-AMG A35. It's not the replacement for the wonderful full-on A45 AMG—that'll come later. But it does sound like a whole lot of fun.

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Let's start with the powertrain. Under the hood of the new Mercedes-AMG A35 is a 2.0-liter twin-scroll turbocharged four-cylinder engine based on the standard A-Class engine. It makes 306 horsepower and 295 lb.-ft. of torque via a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and an AMG-tuned 4Matic all-wheel drive system. AMG says the AWD's torque distribution is "infinitely variable" to suit all sorts of handling situations. It can go from purely front-wheel drive all the way to an even 50-50 split depending on where the power needs to be. AMG's "Race-Start" launch control function is standard.

As with most other new performance cars these days, the Mercedes-AMG A35 has a bunch of different drive modes to choose from. There are five in total: Comfort, Sport, Sport+, Individual, and Mercedes's newest mode, Slippery. Comfort works exactly as you'd expect, turning down all the inputs to make them as effortless as possible, while also being fuel efficient. Sport mode turns everything up a notch to focus on driver enjoyment. Sport+ takes it one step further, going as far as to double-clutch on downshifts and a "partial cylinder cut-off via a brief and precisely defined retardation of ignition and injection at full load." We suspect that's for making pops and bangs. Slippery mode is for low-traction situation (think heavy rain or snow), reducing power, and providing a flat torque curve. The Individual mode allows the driver to customize settings like steering and engine response to their liking.

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The suspension is a McPherson setup up front, and a four-link out back, supplemented by an optional adaptive damping system with three different modes. The brakes are four-piston units up front, and one-piston in the rear. As far as chassis dynamics go, Mercedes-AMG head Tobias Moers claims the A35 is on par performance-wise with the last-gen A45 AMG.

Visually, the car gets a new, meaner fascia with a splitter and dive planes, as well as 18-inch alloy wheels, a diffuser, and a nice big spoiler on top of the hatch. It also gets all the neat new tech found in the regular A-Class, such as the new MBUX infotainment system with two big dash displays and a fully digital instrument cluster. The A35 even gets an "AMG Track Pace" data recorder as an option. It tracks things like speed and acceleration via GPS to give drivers as much information as possible to improve their times around a track.

The 2019 Mercedes-AMG A35 will make its public debut at the Paris Motor Show on Ocotber 2nd, 2018, and will go on sale in January 2019 in Europe. Like the rest of the A-Class hatch line, we don't expect it to come to the US. Instead, we'll likely get a sedan version, though that's yet to be confirmed. Stay tuned.

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