Had the opportunity to drive the Mercedes Benz CLA 35 AMG 4MATIC last year, which is offered as an attractive entry point to the exclusive AMG brand for younger people. I drove the coupe, but it comes in a hatch as well. Featuring a high-level of performance & style, it looks set to appeal to a section of that market.
Because the development of the A 35 4MATIC was integrated into the development process of the new Mercedes-Benz A-Class from the start, it was developed at the same time as the A 45 S 4MATIC+, making it possible to inject the AMG DNA into every relevant detail. The result can certainly be experienced by the driver in the form of authentic driving performance.
The CLA 35 is an attractive car, and I like the coupe, as it suits my demographic better, also doesn’t seem as hard and bumpy as some hatches can be. It has a nice grille with AMG louvres, and air intakes that are large with with flics on the air intakes, a front splitter and silver chrome trims on the louvres in the outer air intakes are distinguishing features at the front.
It has large wheel arches with the characteristic sloping coupe roof. A sporty picture indeed.
The interior creates a good connection with the driver, with a number of sporty and stylish innovations, including the MBUX multimedia system, with its innovative operating and display concept. MBUX replaces the previous COMAND systems, and creates an even closer connection between the vehicle, driver and passengers.
The Mercedes-AMG 35 4MATIC range also comes with trailblazing voice control, activated with the words “Hey Mercedes”. Thanks to artificial intelligence, MBUX recognises and understands nearly all sentences from the fields of infotainment and vehicle operation, even if they are expressed indirectly.
Built in touch control buttons are a new feature, and various modes can be had by vertically and horizontally swiping the media screen. The customer can choose between three AMG display styles for the optional fully digital instrument cluster. The Supersport mode is particularly striking with a central, round rev counter and additional information presented in the form of bars to the left and right of the rev counter: with a three-dimensional perspective, they reach far into the background to an artificial horizon.
Engine & Handling.
This is where the 35 AMG really comes into it’s own. It comes with a 2-litre four-cylinder turbo engine that generates 225kw, and is smooth as silk from the AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7G dual-clutch transmission, the AMG suspension and the variable AMG Performance 4MATIC all-wheel drive. Driving out to Harties on that narrow, traffic clogged stretch, it was a breeze to ghost past cars and feel the acceleration and verve of this car.
Reaching a 0 to 100km/h in a rapid 4.8 secs claimed, it’s quick, and has great sound as well.
The five AMG DYNAMIC SELECT driving programs – Slippery, Comfort, Sport, Sport + and Individual enable a wide range of vehicle characteristics from comfortable to dynamic. They change relevant parameters, such as the response of the engine and transmission.
Suspension is taken care of by one wishbone below the wheel centre, one spring strut and one tie rod respectively. The special axle geometry reduces the influence of the drive on the steering for high comfort and agile handling. The optional Adaptive Damping System enables the driver to choose between three different suspension control modes, ranging from comfort-focused to sporty.
The high-performance braking system ensures fade-resistant deceleration and short braking distances, with 4-piston Monoblock fixed callipers and 350 millimetre brake discs up front, and 1-piston sliding callipers and 330 millimetre brake discs at the rear. The discs are internally ventilated and perforated to better dissipate heat and prevent brake fading, even with extreme use.
Would not mind testing the hatch to get an idea of the diffrences in dynamics.
Technical data at a glance
|Mercedes-AMG A 35 4MATIC Hatch||Mercedes-AMG A 35 4MATIC Sedan||Mercedes-AMG CLA 35 4MATIC|
|Engine||2.0-litre 4-cylinder in-line with exhaust gas turbocharger||2.0-litre 4-cylinder in-line with exhaust gas turbocharger||2.0-litre 4-cylinder in-line with twin scroll exhaust gas turbocharger|
|Displacement||1991 cc||1991 cc||1991 cc|
|Max. output||225 kW at 5800-6100 rpm||225 kW at 5800 rpm||225 kW at 5800 rpm|
|Peak torque||400 Nm at 3000-4000 rpm||400 Nm at 3000-4000 rpm||400 Nm at 3000-4000 rpm|
|Drive system||AMG Performance 4MATIC fully variable all-wheel drive||AMG Performance 4MATIC variable all-wheel drive||AMG Performance 4MATIC fully variable all-wheel drive|
|Transmission||AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7G dual-clutch transmission||AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7G dualclutch transmission||AMG SPEEDSHIFT DCT 7G dualclutch transmission|
|Combined fuel consumption||7.4-7.3 l/100 km*||7.3-7.2 l/100 km*||7.3-7.2 l/100 km*|
|Combined CO2 emissions||169-167 g/km*||167-164 g/km*||167-164 g/km*|
|Acceleration 0-100 km/h||4.7 s||4.8 s||4.9 s|
|Top speed||250 km/h**||250 km/h**||250 km/h**|
|Retail price||R841 000||R850 000||R948 000|
All fuel consumption figures are claimed by the manufacturer.