Mercedes’ AMG division has called on the services of its High Performance Engine (HPE) offshoot in Brixworth, Northamptonshire, for engineering help in the development of the upcoming A-class AMG’s turbocharged 2.0-litre, four-cylinder engine.

Set to make its world debut at the Paris motor show in September, the four-wheel-drive mega-hatch is set to receive a heavily reworked version of Mercedes’ existing M271/M274 petrol engine.

The unit features the same 7mm wall thickness and 90mm bore centre space as Mercedes-Benz HPE had envisaged for its stillborn turbocharged 1.6-litre Formula 1 engine. This powerplant was under development before the world motorsport governing body, the FIA, ratified conflicting turbocharged 2.4-litre V6 engine rules for the 2013 F1 season.

AMG’s decision to involve HPE in the development of the engine follows tough engineering targets laid down by its boss, Ola Kallenius — a former head of HPE. He has insisted that the turbocharged 2.0-litre unit produce more power than the 335bhp turbocharged 2.5-litre, five-pot engine in the Audi RS3 Sportback and the 316bhp turbocharged 3.0-litre straight six used by BMW’s forthcoming M135i hatch. The new BMW hot hatch is earmarked to make an appearance at the Geneva motor show in March.

Further details remain scarce, although Autocar sources suggest the engine will receive a bore and stroke of around 83mm x 89mm, hinting at a capacity of 2.0-litres.

Despite earlier plans to provide the new engine with pressure-wave turbocharger technology from Swiss firm Hyprex, it is now set to run a more conventional exhaust gas-driven twin-scroll turbocharger in combination with the latest in piezo-guided direct injection.

As well as appearing in the A-class AMG, the new engine is earmarked for the larger CLC AMG and CLC Shooting Brake AMG, both scheduled to be launched next year. The engine and running gear are being tested in a B-class test mule, the B-class sharing its underpinnings with the CLC.

Renowned for turning out Mercedes’ F1 engines, as used by McLaren, Force India and its own factory-backed team, HPE is becoming increasingly involved in the engineering of the German car maker’s production car engines. Along with the A-class AMG’s engine, HPE has been approached to help in the development of the upcoming SLS E-Cell’s all-electric driveline.