The four-wheel drive model has also received a revised seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox with shorter ratios for third to seventh along with new software for what AMG officials describe as “improved response and shift action”.
In combination with a new Dynamic Plus package that brings a mechanical locking front differential, the facelifted A45 AMG is claimed to hit 62mph from rest in just 4.2sec. This is 0.4sec faster than the pre-facelifted model and 0.1sec faster than the official claim for the latest Audi RS3. Top speed, combined cycle fuel consumption and CO2 emissions remain the same as before at a limited 155mph, 40.9mpg and 162g/km respectively.
The 180 diesel engine benefits from the most notable fuel economy improvement, with official combined consumption now rated at 80.7mpg. The CO2 emissions have been reduced by 9g/km to 89g/km.
The A220 diesel now comes with more power, with 175bhp on tap, up from the pre-facelift version’s 168bhp.
The A-Class range also adopts Mercedes’ new naming structure. Petrol models now just have a number to denote their variant, but diesel models will have a ‘d’ after their name. Previously, diesels were identified with a 'CDI' badge.
As well as the visual changes, the 2015 Mercedes-Benz A-Class features an optional adaptive damping system in a bid to improve the model’s ride quality.
The adaptive system, called Dynamic Select, has been honed at the premium German car firm’s Sindelfingen research and development facility, where a prototype A-Class was subjected to 10 weeks of testing on a ride simulator during the early stages of development. However, Mercedes has admitted that the new set-up has not yet been tested in the UK.
There are three modes on the adaptive damping system: Comfort, Sport and Eco. The Comfort setting allows more travel and elevation, while ironing out smaller, harsher bumps in the road.
Sport offers less travel and sharper responses, but smaller bumps are more apparent. Despite this, Mercedes-Benz says its engineers have tuned the Sport setting to be softer and more compliant than the Sport settings of its key rivals. Sport trim models will get the system as standard, while it is also offered in combination with the 7G-DCT dual-clutch automatic gearbox.
The trim levels will remain unchanged, although all models will come with a reversing camera as standard and Sport models will come with climate control included.
A new ‘Motorsport Edition’ has also been created, inspired by the company’s Formula 1 team. Parts of the car, including sections of the alloy wheels, are painted in the same shade of green that features on the F1 car. The colour also features on the sports seats and dashboard. It is set to be offered on the A220d model upwards, and is pitched as being a rival to the likes of the VW Golf GTI.
The revised Mercedes A-Class is available to order from 3 July, with the first cars heading to customers in September. Prices will be announced closer to the car’s on-sale date, but they are not expected to vary wildly from the current line-up, which starts at £20,715 for the A180 SE.
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