The smallest AMG model to carry the Panamericana grille has been caught testing in a right-hand drive configuration, so folks from the U.K., Australia, and other RHD markets can rest assured the new A45 has been engineered for those countries as well. What we don’t know for sure is the car’s name, with some saying it will stick to the “A45” moniker while others are suggesting it will be promoted to the “A50” badge or even “A53.” The latter seems unlikely as “53” is used for bigger hybridized performance cars such as the E53 and the CLS 53.
Naming aside, Mercedes-AMG has already confirmed the next generation of its hot hatch will feature not only a completely new engine, but also a newly developed 4Matic setup. It will pack more than 400 horsepower from a turbocharged 2.0-liter gasoline unit and we’ve been hearing rumors of an even hotter version with an electric boost, but we’ll believe it when we’ll see it.
Bear in mind the new A45 or whatever it will be called is not going to be launched anytime soon. That’s because the first order of business for Mercedes is to introduce its most affordable AMG model, the A35. It will likely debut in the months to come and the three-pointed star has already promised it will have approximately 300 hp and will spawn a sedan version bound to be sold in the United States.
If you would rather patiently wait for the top dog in the A-Class family, expect an official debut to occur in the first half of 2019, although sales might not start until the latter half of the year. Should that juicy rumor about a hybrid A45 pan out, it will likely debut in 2020 at the earliest. It’s worth noting the five-door hatch won’t be offered at all in the U.S. where most likely an A45 Sedan will be available.
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